Source: Imgur

The Mysterious Cat-Men Of Japan

No, no--these are not furry feline half-men who prowl the streets of Tokyo (although would you really doubt that in Japan?), but actually something that gets just as much attention as that would! In the last five or so years, the streets and shopping arcades of Japan have found themselves dealing with old men who take baby-carts loaded with fluffy cats for strolls. Hard to picture? Just look below!


Source: Imgur

It's a phenomenon that has gotten quite a bit of attention. As you can imagine, even if you were out on an errand in the bustling streets of Tokyo, it's very easy to drop what you're doing to hurry over to a baby-cart loaded with sometimes 8 cats--especially since they usually seem to be of the super fluffy variety!

Shoko TTさん(@shoko_tt)が投稿した写真 -

It's believed that the cat-stroller originated in a Kyushuu shopping arcade, but copycats (no pun intended...ok, maybe just a little) have started popping up all over the country.

nmkさん(@namikohno)が投稿した写真 -

People are free to come up and take pictures, as well as pet them.

And hey, sometimes they look quite cozy.

MIUさん(@meeeeeeeu)が投稿した写真 -

And they're super popular...but that's where it gets a bit complicated.

Some Japanese netizens have taken to questioning this act of cat-strolling. From comments on Instagram and Twitter, at least one of the Cat-Men has claimed that he does it simply to excite visitors and tourists, and some of these Cat-Men even have cats for sale. However, that's not all. Take for instance, this annual cherry-blossom viewing:

Cute cats and Sakura--nothing better, right?


Source: Hara 19

It turns out the Cat-Man threw those cats onto the tree.


Source: Hara 19

That's not all--some of the Cat-Men have taken the cats and placed them inside train stations and other crowded places, apparently for the purpose of getting attention. While social media is mostly overflowing with talk of how adorable and funny the cats are, there are many calling for an end to it because it is dangerous and and upsetting for the cats. There is even a Twitter account that decries it called "Cats are not for show."

These poor cats!

Do you really feel better about yourself seeing them like this?

"It's cute"--is that all you think?

Maybe you don't know anything about cats or animals.

So what do you think? It's a hands-down crowd-pleaser, but we just can't help but feel sorry for cats being surrounded in a train station and not knowing what to do.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.

kalix90 / shoko_tt / namikohno / ike_lisa2 / meeeeeeeu / ai1212agn / seishun21 / Hara 19 / @neko1234512345 / Nekomemo
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