Tourist attractions across the world are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and for zoos, it’s meant a lot of lonely animals needing a little company. Fortunately, residents at the San Antonio Zoo in Texas got to make a few new furry friends when a local animal shelter brought some of their puppies and kittens for a visit. The result? Tons of adorable images of pets and zoo animals getting a good look at each other.
“These pets, they have the same routine every day, so it’s really nice to break that up and for them to be able to get some new smells and see some new animals,” Michelle Thorson of the Animal Defense League of Texas [ADL] told USA Today.
Kittens Dublin and Chomp got to visit the zoo first, and were joined on a second visit by puppies Ella and Carla. Outside of the obvious cute factor of the field trip, it also created an opportunity for shelter workers to get to know the pets better.
“We get to learn a lot about [the pets’] personalities as well,” said Thorson. “We get to see how they interact with different experiences.”
A Much-Needed Playdate
The zoo animals were also glad to welcome their furry visitors, say employees.
“It really helps to stimulate natural behaviors and keep them happy and healthy,” said a zoo employee in a video posted by the shelter.
The ADL and the San Antonio Zoo hope that the visit will bring awareness to shelter pets in need.
“This is such a fun way to showcase both of our organization’s missions and highlight the care we provide for animals in need and use the zoo’s platform to promote responsible pet ownership and adoption,” said Tim Morrow, CEO of the San Antonio Zoo, in a statement.
“Now more than ever, we require the support of our wonderful community to continue our life-saving work here at the ADL, said the shelter’s executive director, Joel McLellan, in a statement. “Please support our mission by becoming an adopter, volunteer, donor or foster!”
Those interested in adopting or volunteering for the ADL can visit their website for more details.