Behind the Scenes With Big Cats

“My favorite thing is to go where I’ve never been.” – Diane Arbus

big-lion

Yesterday I took my Little Sister on an adventure at our zoo for a behind the scenes tour of Big Cat Country! What a great time! Neither of us had ever done this before.

When we first walked up to the exhibit area with our tour group, we saw this big guy lounging and enjoying the beautiful fall day. His little tongue was left sticking out after a big yawn.

He eyed our small group with only the slightest curiosity. And then, surprise! His female companion slowly raised her head to glance in our direction and see what the fuss was about.

lions

Then we got to go to the restricted area that is typically closed to zoo visitors. My Little’s favorite? The tigers. The male was outside (below).

eva-and-tiger

And the girl was inside. Unlike their lion counterparts, the tigers don’t get along socially. Well, the girl doesn’t like the boy, anyway. But she loves people — especially her keeper. She chirped and rubbed her face on the pen as we approached. She was like a really big house cat. A house cat with paws that are bigger than your face and teeth the length of your fingers.

tiger

This was the female snow leopard. I just thought she was so beautiful. She wasn’t the friendliest creature in the world, but she was gorgeous. She made sure we got to admire her teeth, also. Lots of hissing and growling.

snow-leopard

After the tour, we made our way through the rest of the zoo, taking the train and enjoying the Halloween festival vibe. Lots of mummies and elaborate decorations abounded.

mummy

eva1

My Little’s baby doll is named Silly, a sure sign that we were destined to be friends. I just love this little girl. She’s such a hoot.

zoo

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