Tuesday, July 24, 2018

The Petting Zoo & Camp for Traumatized Toys

I've been reading Dispatches [from the Vietnam War] by Michael Herr. Yesterday at work I saw some toy soldiers &, under the book's influence, I thought the toys might want to lay their weapons down & change their poses after all this time....

Naturally the small animals wanted to help too, and thus the Petting Zoo & Camp for Traumatized Toys (PZCTT) was born. 

First step--unburdening the toys of their heavy weaponry. Finished last night around 1 a.m.

Someone slept through it all. This morning on the couch, "What happened here?" 
All the small animals volunteer for this work and are highly trained as well as being naturally gifted.
So far the toys are really liking it and getting a lot of benefit from it.

In other words, it's not really a "zoo"--no one is captive there! 

But the small animals thought the name might have happy childhood associations for the traumatized toys. And they do like being petted.  (They thought a name like "healing center" might be off putting.)

All is not sweetness and light, just because the participants are very small. Someone had to try to ride the giraffe. Luckily, Spot the Giraffe sees it all as part of the healing process.

Exercise has been found to be helpful, but it’s entirely optional at the Petting Zoo & Camp for Traumatized Toys. You can go alone, or you can take a friend.
Nothing is compulsory at the PZ&CTT!

Some toys stay for extended periods, some just come for an afternoon.
All the animals are gentle and entirely used to toys with quick startle reactions. The dinosaurs look fierce but turns out they are especially tender-hearted. 

Practicing listening skills at the Petting Zoo & Camp for Traumatized Toys.