By: Bex Rizo(she/her/)
Editorial Team Member

My Trip to the Chicago Zoo

My family loves animals. In fact, we love them so much that we have a total of eleven! Sometimes I think we must be insane to have so many. But I wouldn’t give them up for the world; they are all sweet, energetic, and funny in different ways. They also help me when I am down or sad. I know I can always depend on them. 

 It all started with our first dog Sirius. When I was about eleven or twelve, my siblings and I had somehow convinced my mom to let us have a dog. We were so happy when she finally agreed to get us one. We immediately fell in love with him. He was smart, caring, playful, and the funniest dog you could ever meet. As time went on, we thought he might get lonely being the only dog in our house, so we once again convinced our mom to get another dog that we named Aries. Part Boxer and Great Dane, she was the sweetest dog right from the start. She always knew how to cheer you up when you were sad, and she had a gentle-giant way about her that my other dog did not have. Aries is actually my brother’s Social Emotional support dog. 

At this point, I was okay with just two dogs, but my sister, the animal lover, couldn’t resist getting two Guinea pigs and two geckos. 

Soon after those family additions, a close friend came to visit, and after leaving, we found a note thanking us for having him over. In his message, he included a joke about visiting the “Chicago Zoo” because we had so many animals. I thought it was funny at the time, but little did I know, we would end up getting four more cats!!! We got all four from a rescue shelter, and they are two sets of bonded  pairs. First it was Honey Bee and Bumble, followed by Sage and Inej. My family and I have always had a love for animals, especially animals that need homes. I tend to joke around with my sister and mom; they can’t say no to the cute faces. To be fair, I can’t either, so  I try not to look at how adorable they are. Our latest addition is Simon. Simon is a 10-week-old Goldendoodle, who is in training to be a Diabetic Alert Dog (DAD). 

 I love to poke fun at it and say that maybe we should have stopped with one or two, but I wouldn’t trade any of them for anything. They are each special to me in different ways, sometimes it hurts to think about what I will do when they get older, or I get older and am not around. Although those thoughts can be frightening and sad, I know they will always be with me in spirit, even if they aren’t physically. My family and I are animal lovers, and that’s probably why we’ve had over sixteen pets in my lifetime, and will most likely continue to take in more. which is why I love my “Chicago Zoo” house, filled to the brim with crazy, fun, and cute furry friends. In the beginning it may have been about helping animals that needed homes, but somewhere along the way it became much more to us. They aren’t just pets, they are part of the family.  

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