But what really sets this venue apart from most local cafes -- aside from the furry cats who live at Crumbs & Whiskers -- is its mission to do good.
Crumbs & Whiskers (3211 O St. NW in Georgetown) serves as a home for 20 rescue cats at a time. Paying customers come in for one-hour sessions to order food and drink -- and frolic with cats who live in the store until they find a forever home.
Crumbs & Whiskers is the brainchild of 24-year-old owner Kanchan Singh. Inspired by a cat cafe she saw in Thailand, Singh decided to pursue a dream of opening her own business..
“When I came back and I was researching it, I realized that I could also use the concept to facilitate adoptions,” Singh said.
The 20 cats who live in the store are chosen from the Washington Humane Society.
“We make sure we select cats that like being around other cats and being around people. That way they’re not stressed out and they love being in the environment,” Singh said.
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In its first week of business, Crumbs & Whiskers helped arrange six adoptions.
Singh said customers who become attached to a cat get to know the animal in her cafe, find it on the Washington Humane Society’s website, fill out the necessary paperwork and applications, and pending approval, pick up their new pet from the Georgetown store.
Walking into the small, three-story building, there is no sign of the overwhelming cat smell one would expect. It is clean and and decorated in white and light colors. Indie rock plays over the speakers, and the staff is welcoming.
The sleepy corner of Georgetown where Crumbs & Whiskers calls home is comfortably distanced from the hordes of slow walkers on M Street. It sits across from a small cafe that provides Crumbs & Whiskers with coffee drinks, milkshakes and snacks that customers order.
A Crumbs & Whiskers experience is ideal for families unsure of adopting. The small space will show you how the animal interacts with other animals and other people.
Be warned: you might fall in love with all 20 of them.