Hey everyone! This weekend it was a bank holiday weekend in the UK as well as my partner’s birthday. We have been super lucky with the fantastic summery weather but it has also melted everyone/caused lots of storms/been difficult for my doggo so as nice as it has been I would like a few cooler days off, please!
After having a run of a few years of difficult birthdays, this year me and my partner (Tom) instated a birthday rule of ‘no family!‘ which has really lessened the stress and improved the good times. For my birthday Tom took me the London Aquarium and so for his birthday I treated him to a trip to London Zoo as he had never been before.
Having lived in London for my entire life, I’ve been to London Zoo throughout my 26 years and, as a result, developed a lot of very complicated feelings around zoos. I actually wrote an essay on zoos for my human-animal relations module at university where I explored my conflicted feelings around entertainment and animal welfare. However, I knew that London Zoo had been making a lot of improvements to their enclosures over the past few years and wanted to see for myself.
We were both really happy to see that the enclosures are a lot more appropriate for the animals. Inappropriately large animals have been moved away to zoos with more space, enclosures have been made much, much bigger with more space for the animals to roam around and adapted so they have more privacy from the public, there’s are a lot more educational opportunities, there are more ‘walk through’ enclosures where the animals are free roaming (like birds and small monkeys) and lots more enrichment for the animals.
It was really nice to see how far the zoo has come and we both felt much happier with our visit. We also made some really cute animal friends. In the Rainforest walk-through enclosure a curious, little Tamarind monkey hopped up on the balcony in front of my partner and kept following him around wanting to climb up on his shoulders! I also had a Giraffe pay a lot of interest to me in their inside house, following me around to the different parts and having a right good look at me! All in all, it was a great day out and I’m glad my partner had a good birthday ❤
I also wanted to quickly share some Achilles positivity as well. Many of you probably don’t know but when we first rescued Achilles as a stray 2 years ago he was really struggling with a lot of things. He was SUPER reactive to other dogs (screaming, lunging, etc), couldn’t be left on his own even for a few minutes, and could never ever be let off lead.
He’s made so many improvements with everything and yesterday after work I took him to visit my best friend and her Beagle Lola. She knew of a really nice enclosed area where we could let both of the dogs off the lead so they could play together (which Achilles has sadly never been able to do). I kept him on a long line just for reassurance but he had a great time running around and playing with Lola, and we did lots of recall training while we had the chance. Achilles was so happy and I hope we can find a lot more chances for Achilles to make some nice doggy friends ❤
Read this week
For the first time ever, I have not only almost reached my reading challenge goal but have actually had to increase it! My original goal was 50 books but as you can see I am only 9 books away from reaching that and we’re only halfway through the year. I’ve raised it to 75 for now which would be amazing if I smashed it!