Zoo School Zookeeper's Day Testimonials

A Typical Day in the Life of a Zookeeper

The day starts early (between 7am and 8am depending on the time of year and weather conditions).  Basic preparations ranging from checking the food for the day to caring for the smaller non-exhibit animals are assigned.  A brief staff meeting follows next to cover any specific health or safety issues for the day.

After the meeting, everyone breaks-up into cleaning teams and begin cleaning the major exhibits.  The zoo grounds, buildings and facilities are also made ready for the day.  Varying weather conditions may call for additional preparations to ensure the animals are comfortable, and  that the guests have a safe & enjoyable visit to the park.

When 10am arrives, the zoo is opened and everyone begins the shifts scheduled for that hour.  Shifts duties could  include a number of duties necessary in the day to day operations of the zoological park.   Ticket Booth and Gift Shop: The park receives no local, state, or federal funding so income generated from admissions and gift shop sales is essential to meeting the financial needs of Cat Tales  

Tour Guide:  The role of our students and keepers in educating the public who visit the zoo is important.  While guests are welcome to walk through and experience the zoo on their own, we encourage them to take one of the many guided tours offered throughout the day.  Not only do the students and keepers provide guests with information about the animal species, they can share the personal stories of how each animal came to be a part of the Cat Tales family.  With so many of our animals coming to us as rescues, this is the best way to educate the public against private ownership of these animals as "pets".   Tours also provide our guests with the chance to see the animals interact with the keepers, making their visit more memorable.

Food Prep:  Proper diet and nutrition are essential to providing our animals the best care possible.  Each animal that lives at Cat Tales has specific dietary needs that are met through the meals prepared by our students and keepers.  While it is not the most glamorous part of the day, it is certainly important ... and very much appreciated by our zoo inhabitants.

Animal Observation: We have taken on the responsibility to provide a safe, loving, and healthful home for every animal at the Cat Tales Zoological Park.  One of the keys to this is through daily observation of each animal.  Their behaviors, food consumption, physical appearance, and more are all noted meticulously each day.  Illness or other issues are often first discovered through changes noted in the observation records of an animal.  These records can then aid us in deciding what steps should be taken to remedy the problem.

General Duties: these can cover a wide area of daily zoo operations.  For the Zoological Park to operate smoothly and successfully there are numerous items that need to be attended to.  Our students and keepers strive to ensure that our animals are happy and well cared for, and that our guests find their visit to be informative and enjoyable so they will want to come visit again in the future.  Whether weeding the flower beds, restocking gift shop shelves, assisting with an animal procedure, or working with an animal for public relations, each and every duty at Cat Tales is neccessary for continued success.

Some times the day will run into night if the project demands, but no matter how long the days are, the rewards are worth it in the big picture.