10 Things New Zoo Employees Are Not to Do No Matter What

The Bronx Zoo in New York
The Bronx Zoo in New York

Where did the Zoo come from?

  • From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Giants of the Savanna Exhibit at the Dallas Zoo, Texas, October 2011
    A zoo (short for zoological park or zoological garden, and also called a menagerie) is a facility in which animals are confined within enclosures, displayed to the public, and in which they may also be bred.
  • The term zoological garden refers to zoology, the study of animals, a term deriving from the Greek zoon ( "animal") and l√≥gos ("study"). The abbreviation "zoo" was first used of the London Zoological Gardens, which opened for scientific study in 1828 and to the public in 1857. The number of major animal collections open to the public around the world now exceeds 1,000, around 80 percent of them in cities.

Remember the zoo?

Much like bowling alleys I talked about in my last hub being great places for family fun, the same can be said of zoo's. Think about it. Where else can you and your family pay a small admission price and spend the day taking your sweet time talking to each other and enjoying what seems to be an endless parade of animals, both exotic and domestic?

I can think of only one place. Our city parks. But the only two animal species there are squirrels and pigeons. Both have been hooked on popcorn and peanuts by "us" over the years. I find nothing wrong with city parks, it's just that zoos such as the Kansas City and Oklahoma City Zoo's offer huge varieties of animals and animal shows that we can sit and enjoy without an extra charge.

Oklahoma City Zoo entrance
Oklahoma City Zoo entrance
Mother kangaroo and baby (Joey) at Kansas City Zoo
Mother kangaroo and baby (Joey) at Kansas City Zoo

Zoos have pretty much everything for your pleasure

I almost forgot about those tasty concessions available almost everywhere inside these zoos mentioned in above paragraph. What a great day you can have with your wife and kids in these or any zoo that is near your area.

I know that this, so far, sounds much like a commercialized-endorsement of zoos, but really isn't. I had t give you the proper background so you could understand the rest of this story.

Let's pretend for a moment that this poor guy, who doesn't exist, has just been fired from his current job as a pet shampoo telemarketer and now he is the unrecognized record-holder of "Most Jobs Lost in a Single Year," but do not worry about this man. Help is on the way inside his daily newspaper that he always reads the moment he arrives at home, which today will be earlier than usual.

Watching this will put you in the mood for a visit to the zoo

Zoo employee, Yann Gagnon
Zoo employee, Yann Gagnon
The elephants are always an awe-inspiring sight at any zoo
The elephants are always an awe-inspiring sight at any zoo

Miracles do happen

Upon opening the paper on this certain day, he heads straight for the classified ads where he prays to find a job opening that suits him. No sooner than he starts reading the ads under "Help Wanted," he sees it: THE ad to make him feel like a real man again. THE job that he knows that in time, he can master and hopefully retire with a hefty-pension, if one is provided.

The job: "General worker for the city zoo. No experience necessary. Will train. No high school or college degree required. Hourly wage starts at $13.00/hour. Apply in person. Glen Haven City Zoo, Monday through Friday. No calls please."

In this poor man's mind, the word, "ideal" surfaces over and over again. This is THE job he has dreamed of. No more cramped, stressful office jobs. No more cranky bosses. Yes, sir, he thinks. My ship has finally come in. And since he does love animals and working outdoors, he might as well tell people he is the new City Zoo General Worker. He is that confident.

Most every zoo has a fine collection of giraffe to treat the eyes
Most every zoo has a fine collection of giraffe to treat the eyes

You gotta be kiddin' this poor guy

But soon as he passes his interview with flying colors, his bubble is burst on the first day of his dream job. He is feeling down, but not defeated. Then he is hurt again and now he sees this new job as daunting and overwhelming. Plus being dangerous. I wish he had read this list of . . .

10 Things New Zoo Employees Are Not to Do No Matter What

A team of sanitation employees are always at work keeping the zoo grounds very clean
A team of sanitation employees are always at work keeping the zoo grounds very clean
The lovely tiger is always a sight to see
The lovely tiger is always a sight to see
Oklahoma City Zoo outside area
Oklahoma City Zoo outside area
Feeding babies are only a part of a zoo worker's tasks
Feeding babies are only a part of a zoo worker's tasks
A zoo worker inspects a hippo's teeth as part of his duties at the zoo
A zoo worker inspects a hippo's teeth as part of his duties at the zoo
Kansas City Zoo visitor entrance
Kansas City Zoo visitor entrance
The majestic male lion, "King of Beasts"
The majestic male lion, "King of Beasts"
The reptile house is an interesting place to just watch the reptiles, not play with them
The reptile house is an interesting place to just watch the reptiles, not play with them
Rhinos are fun to watch, but do stay away from them for your safety
Rhinos are fun to watch, but do stay away from them for your safety

10.) Leave home without cleaning the smell of bacon off your body.

9.) Make faces (only in fun) to the Silver Gorillas. After all, they are behind bars, so what harm can they do?

8.) Give the lions and tigers a lous wake-up call causing them to lose their temper. And there you stand with that stupid canned airhorn in your hand.

7.) Your buddies show-up to wish you well on your new job, but they have been drinking, so they dare you to walk into the black panther cage and stay for 15 seconds.

6.) Quickly-volunteering for any new task the boss mentions. On your first day, your eagerness takes you to the Reptile House. Not to view and enjoy the snakes and such, but to clean all of their cages which mean you have to hand them out to your assistant who is severely-addicted to "weed" and laziness, and he is the boss' nephew.

5.) On your lunch break, your lunch is suddenly taken from you by a playful chimp named, "Leonard." You try, in a nice way, to get your lunch back for you are famished, but "Leonard," believes that you are attacking him and almost tears your arms off giving you deep cuts and ugly scratches.

4.) On your third day you believe in yourself to the extent that you are not fearful of feeding the seals their daily feeding of fresh fish. Before you know it, the "friendly" seals are smart enough to gang-up on you and almost beat you senseless and to make you look even more foolish, they take all of the fish and your zoo-issued coveralls.

3.) Your boss calls you to his office to reprimand you for some friction you caused with "Gramps," the elderly walrus who has been in the zoo since his birth. The boss says he will not fire you if you will kiss "Gramps" on the lips and not lose your lunch. It was tough kissing the walrus with fish bones and scales all around his mouth, but you did it. And when you were good and out of sight, you not only lost your lunch, but had to be taken to the emergency room for a "mysterious" surge of food poisoning.

2.) On another day, your beer-drinking buddies show-up again and this time, bet you some real money to challenge "Baby," the ostrich, to a footrace winner take all. But "Baby," is not educated on the fun of a footrace, so she attacks you in a violent fashion as you lay on the ground begging your intoxicated buddies to get her off of you. Plus you lost your only $50 you had saved in your wallet for emergencies.

1.) On Monday of the next week, you are minding your own business in the giraffe area leaving feed for them in their feeding areas when one giraffe, who isn't used to you, waits until your back is turned and takes a bite out of your butt and almost taking your "privates" with him.

Hey, fella. Don't feel so bad. Aren't you glad that the subscription to your treasured-daily newspaper has not ran out?

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Comments 10 comments

ologsinquito profile image

ologsinquito 22 months ago from USA

Zoos are a lot of fun, but mostly for the visitors. It's got to be a really tough job unless you're crazy about animals, and will do almost anything to be around them.


Pro Shell profile image

Pro Shell 22 months ago from Vereinigten Staaten

I did a search for the word feed, and I'm happy to say that you only used it five times.

Great work!


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 22 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Pro Shell,

Feed? I wasn't aware. Thank you. And thank you for the comment and compliment.

I have always dreamed of working at (a) zoo. Please visit with me anytime.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 22 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

ologsinquito ,

Thank you lots for your comment which I agree with. As I told Pro Shell, I always wanted to work at a zoo--but only around animals who will loved me back and not hurt me.


Bidd Waxx profile image

Bidd Waxx 22 months ago from Wisconsin

Zoos are very important place to take your growing family. Kenneth you are an amazing writer with the wide range of writings you write, this being, again, another one. Learning experience for new employees, do you think the new employees at the zoo, feel awkward?


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 22 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Bidd Waxx,

Firstly, to respect you, thank you kindly for your nice comment. Thank you also for the nice things you said about me, but Our God gave me these things to talk about.

I have been in a zoo where (some) of the employees could double as circus performers (e.g. daredevils) for how careless they entered the big cats' cages and other things.

The customers loved it, but I thought, wow. How can you do that knowing that any one of these big cats can easily take you out without an effort.

Hopefully, this never happened to any of them.

Just here to help.

Bidd, have a great weekend.


vkwok profile image

vkwok 22 months ago from Hawaii

It's definitely a tough job working in a zoo full of animals.


aviannovice profile image

aviannovice 21 months ago from Stillwater, OK

Pretty darn entertaining, but rest assured, things like this do happen to those that are not used to working with animals...This was a great read, and it was also pretty darn entertaining, but rest assured, things like this do happen to those that are not used to working with animals...


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 21 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Dear aviannovice,

Thank you so very much. I agree with you on the fact that if no one has ever been around animals, they have two strikes against them going in.

Pleas visit me anytime you please.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 21 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

vkwok,

You are so right. Working in a zoo is a job that I would not succeed no matter how hard I tried.

I have learned that all animals and reptiles can sense when we are fearful of them and that can be dangerous.

Thanks, good friend for your great friendship and following.

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