Skip to main content

Our Animal Care

We care for animals.

You can see that care every day, from dedicated keepers to highly trained veterinarians. Our animals get regular medical check-ups and cutting-edge treatment. We’re constantly exploring new ways to enrich their diet and play, and help them feel comfortable. 

Caring for animals

It takes a team.
(Vets, techs and more.)
It takes a dedicated and skilled team to give animals the care they deserve. Our veterinarians, veterinary technicians, interns and registrar work with keepers, combining expertise, technology and passion to care for all our animals, large and small.

Meet the Team

Dr. Karen
Dr. Kadie
Julie
Sara
Emily

Why we care

I’ve always been drawn to nature and wild animals. There are many veterinarians that care for domestic animals, but relatively few who care for wildlife. Caring for and improving medical knowledge of wild animals is very important for conservation of those species.
I also love the challenge of zoo veterinary life: There is never a dull day, and you have to think outside the box to give the best care for the unique anatomy, physiology and behavior of wild animals.
And there is nothing in the world quite as awe-inspiring as providing hands-on medical care for animals like walruses, polar bears, tigers and more.

– Dr. Karen Wolf, head veterinarian

Care Stories

Zookeeper Life: Piper

What do you do if your 760-pound male muskox refuses to do what you ask him? Well, if you’re a zookeeper, you have other strategies in your pocket. For keeper Piper, who cares for muskoxen, clouded leopards and an elephant at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, it’s all in a day’s work. 7am Piper’s day … Continued

Read More
Zookeeper Life: Stephanie

Keeper Stephanie’s day involves quite a lot of fish – and shrimp, and clam, and squid. When you care for ten marine mammals and four flocks of seabirds in nine different pools, you do a lot of feeding – and cleaning too. But for keepers like Stephanie at Point Defiance Zoo’s Rocky Shores habitat, creativity … Continued

Read More
Zookeeper Life: Monica

Chef. Dietitian. Physical therapist. Hydrotherapist. Public speaker, cleaner, cricket-handler. When keeper Monica signed up to become a zookeeper, she knew it wouldn’t ever get boring – but caring for animals in Point Defiance Zoo’s Kids’ Zone took it to another level. 7:30am Kids’ Zone keeper days always start with a team meeting in the goat … Continued

Read More
Help us care
You can help us care for animals both here at the Zoo and around the world by giving to The Zoo Society. Donations support health care equipment, enrichment, conservation and more.