A museum in Xi’an, China, feeling the heat from the internet, has reversed its decision to kick out a litter of stray cats.
According to China Daily, the Forest of Stone Steles Museum came to the initial decision to evict the strays after a visitor complaint was filed on Wednesday, which involved a child that was scratched by a protective mother cat after he tried to play with its kittens.
The stray cats are reported to have made the museum their home, and are regularly featured in tourists’ photos.
Following the scratching incident, the museum quickly put up signs around the site warning visitors from playing with the cats.
One of the signs reads: “Please do not put the cats in danger for your own pleasure.”
The day after the signs went up, it was reported that museum staff were sighted trying to catch the cats so that they could give them away.
Chinese netizens soon caught wind of the museum’s plans and started leaving angry comments on its Weibo page.
One user wrote: “Cats don’t attack people unless provoked, it’s humans that need to keep themselves in check. Don’t blame cats who can’t speak up for themselves!”
Many insisted that the museum keep the cats or face a boycott.
On Monday, after the weekend barrage of negative messages, the museum finally scratched its eviction plans. It shared the news in a Weibo post that said:
“The cats can stay! Thank you everyone for their concern and support over the past few days. The museum will ensure to better supervise these cats, even providing them with vaccinations, insect repellent, sterilisation and continue to put up signs warning visitors about interacting with the cats. We are dedicated to providing a warm and loving environment for the cats and our visitors.”
The post has since received over 10,000 likes and shares. Looks like all is well in the cat kingdom again.