Remember when we used to be able to take a special day to go to the aquarium (or anywhere else for that matter)?
There’s something really special about getting a glimpse of a world that isn’t ours, where we can’t survive, and where the creatures look nothing like us. And it’s amazing to watch aquatic creatures swim together in relative harmony.
It’ll be a while before most of us humans can do it again thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, but aquarium caretakers — ALL animal caretakers, for that matter — are still on the job, making sure the creatures are healthy for when we can come back. They are the kinds of essential employees we often don’t think about – and their ability to go to work really is a matter of life and death.
So what better way to reward them while drumming up financial support in a time of need than letting loose some puppies and kittens during the workday?!
Carmel and Odie’s trip to the Georgia Aquarium in March went viral for obvious reasons.
The staff at the Atlanta Humane Society and the Georgia Aquarium’s “Ocean Voyager” exhibit decided to see if these two adorable rescues — who were just eight weeks old at the time — would enjoy a day out beneath the sea.
And they did — kind of. (Let’s face it, this was more for our benefit than the dogs’.)
The adorable little terrier mixes certainly enjoyed exploring the new space and running free on their big adventure.
And they did take in some of the sights at first.
But just like puppies, they got bored easily and were far more interested in sniffing around and playing with each other.
These little balls of energy ended up getting plenty of exercise that day.
Then they found the perfect spot to nap it off.
The fish, of course, didn’t care much about the puppies.
The scruffy duo’s escapade has been viewed millions of times on Facebook and YouTube, delighting kids and adults alike and giving some people the prod they needed to consider rescuing or fostering an animal in need while stuck at home.
While it seems as though the world has stopped around us, there are plenty of animals still in shelters who need care.
And there’s no reason for cat-lovers to feel left out of this. We all know that cats are more likely to appreciate this kind of field trip anyway.
In response to dozens of requests, the Humane Society took a litter of kittens on their own adventure to the aquarium.
On April 6, 2020, they posted a new video with the caption “You asked for it… you got it!” and shared footage of the sweet kittens in awe of the whole scene.
Just as you’d expect, the furry felines were VERY impressed.
“They couldn’t get enough of the beautiful Tropical Diver exhibit, and loooooved the jellies! We hope their adorable adventure puts a smile on your face,” the Humane Society wrote in their caption.
The Humane Society also used the viral videos as an opportunity to share tips for pet owners during the COVID-19 outbreak.
“Be sure your pet is prepared and ensure you have multiple caregiver options for your pet in case you become unable to care for your pet,” for example.
While there’s still no evidence that companion animals such as cats and dogs can spread the virus (though there are a small number of cases in which animals have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2), the CDC recommends not letting your pets interact with people outside your home, letting them play with other animals at dog parks, or letting cats outside until we know more.
In other words, they should follow the same social distancing rules as the rest of us.
These adorable kittens on the move remind us just how much responsibility we bear for taking care of our sweet pets, even during hard times.
The Atlanta Humane Society and other animal shelters around the country have been doing a great job of reminding those of us in quarantine that now might be a great time to foster an animal.
Be sure to scroll down below to see both adorable field trips to the Georgia Aquarium.
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