When you live in a cramped city like Tokyo, owning a pet is a luxury many people cannot afford. Apartments usually come with strict no-pets policies, and the only way Tokyo dwellers have been able to get their pet-fix is by visiting cat cafes. Sure, it’s nice to sip on a delicious drink while petting a purring kitty, but you can’t stay there forever. What are you supposed to do during those other, horrible cat-less hours of the day?
One company in Japan has come up with a solution. They’re bringing the soothing cat cafe experience to the office by filling their workplace with adorable cats.
The cat-populated workplace is the brainchild of Ferray Corporation, an internet solutions business which mainly deals with webpage construction, application development, and other IT work. The company own nine loveable rescue cats that are allowed to roam the office on a daily basis, sleeping, causing adorable trouble as cats will, and just generally being cute little balls of stress-relief.
▼ Here’s all nine of the cats. We can only assume that each of their names is Kawaii! in a slightly higher pitch each time.
Of course, the cats can be little pranksters sometimes too. Apparently they accidentally switch off computers, chew on LAN cables, scratch the walls, tear up papers, and of course mess up code by walking across keyboards. When clients come over, the cats have a bad habit of exploring their bags by falling inside them, and sleeping right on top of meeting tables.
▼ Well if the humans didn’t want me chewing on their cables then they shouldn’t have made them so delicious.
Still, the employees have said that despite some minor annoyances, the cats have been an enormous net positive. Office communication has increased dramatically, since the cats are a topic that brings employees together, and also lower everyone’s stress. It’s basically just impossible to be upset when there’s a cat just hanging out nearby you, chewing on a toy or chasing a laser.
And the company’s pro-pet policies don’t just end with the nine cats. Every day is Bring Your Pet to Work Day, as employees are encouraged to bring their own pets with them to the office. If they don’t have a pet of their own, then the company pays out a 5,000 yen (US$42) per month “cat bonus” to anyone who adopts a cat in need of a home.
As crazy as it may sound, Ferray isn’t alone in its pet policies. Another company that specializes in pet supplies, Mars Japan Limited, also encourages its employees to bring their pets to work. Other companies offer benefits such as treating the death of employees’ pets the same as the death of a family member, giving them time off, condolence pay, and covering funeral services.
If these kind of working conditions sound like cat paradise to you, well then you’re in luck. Ferray says that the most important quality they look for in new hires is a love of felines. They do ask that you have a minimum level of skill and experience too, but they always prioritize animal-lovers over anyone else.
For the rest of us though, we can just enjoy the Ferray cats’ Twitter account where photos of the nine cats having fun around the office are posted on a near-daily basis. If you like any of these tweets below, then you may way to consider following Ferray so that you can browse through them at work and pretend that your office is just as awesome.
▼ I fixed your hardware issue. Do I get a treat now?
V and Ume (@v_ume) September 11, 2014
▼ What? It’s not distracting me having my tail in front of your screen.
V and Ume (@v_ume) January 31, 2014
▼ Gotta lick your best when the company purr-sident shows up!
V and Ume (@v_ume) October 20, 2014
▼ Nope, you’re done with work. Time for a nap.
V and Ume (@v_ume) July 11, 2014
▼ These 3-D printers are getting more realistic by the day.
V and Ume (@v_ume) June 28, 2014