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Bangkok cafe offers up-close encounters with fennec foxes, meerkats

By Ben Hooper

BANGKOK, May 3 (UPI) -- A Bangkok cafe is courting animal fans -- and controversy -- by offering customers the chance to play with fennec foxes, meerkats and other exotic animals.

The Little Zoo Cafe, which opened its doors late last year, allows customers to get up close and personal with cuddle-ready critters including owls, raccoons, fennec foxes and meerkats.

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The cafe's Facebook page contains multiple photos and videos showing patrons handling the exotic animals inside the eatery's glass rooms.

The business does not charge an entrance fee, but customers seeking some playtime with the pets are required to order food or beverages from the menu. Guests are also required to sanitize their hands and remove their shoes before entering the animal areas.

The cafe has raised controversy among animal advocates who argue the exotic creatures are not meant for such an environment and are likely to suffer stress from the interactions with customers.

The cafe warned on Facebook that the animals should not be mistaken for domesticated pets.

"For them to be exactly like dogs and cats as house pets would be difficult," the Facebook post said.

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