As there are no wild hedgehogs in Japan, seeing one is quite a treat. To fill this gap in the market with some prickly cuteness, a hedgehog-themed cafe has opened in Roppongi District, Tokyo.
Since February, customers have been queuing at the "Harry" cafe to have the opportunity to pet the hedgehogs. The name "Harry" stems from a wordplay on the Japanese word for hedgehog. For 1,000 yen ($9) on weekdays and 1,300 yen ($11) on holidays, the cafe offers an hour of petting and playing with a selection of hedgehogs. There’s even a “menu” of different colors to choose from.
In case hedgehogs aren’t your thing, the same building also has a rabbit cafe owned by the same people.
Mizuki Murata, who works at the cafe, told Reuters, “We wanted to show people the charm of hedgehogs, which give the impression of being hard to handle. We wanted to get rid of that image by letting people touch them.”
She added, “The cutest thing about hedgehogs is getting them to finally open up and show you their face.”
Although some people have doubted the suitability of petting these shy and nocturnal creatures, hedgehogs can be comfortably kept as pets. In Japan, these prickly beasts are particularly popular as tiny companions. That said, if you see a hedgehog out and about in the wild it’s always best to leave them be. However, if you come across one in your garden, it’s advised you feed them meaty cat or dog food and water – not bread and milk.
A photo posted by eko tjoek (@ekotjoek) on Apr 7, 2016 at 4:32pm PDT
A photo posted by Dan the Girl (@lostgirlintokyo) on Feb 8, 2016 at 9:51pm PST