Around August of 2017, the zoo finished construction of a yard behind Pelusa’s barn. This was done to give her more space, provide her with trees and clean, unpacked dirt. Unfortunately, she has never used her new space. Her caregivers have tried to get her to go in, but Pelusa would never put more than her front two feet in the space.
And then there was Saturday. Suz was cleaning and saw Pelu pick up a piece of bamboo and head that way. Suz peeked around the corner to find her in the backyard, looking around. Pelusa didn’t spend long in there, but when Suz checked around the yard, she found other footprints indicating Pelusa had explored the yard a bit during the night as well.
The best part that we all agreed on, without talking to each other about it, was that she went on her own. And we’ll use Suz’s words to explain why it’s exciting….
“nobody asked her to go and this means
1) she’s actually truly feeling better
2) when she her basic needs are met and when she is feeling good, there is a deeply curious soul who is willing to explore and try new things on her own… which tells me she just might be way more than ok at sanctuary and willing to explore and go further once she is there… which is just beautiful news!”
Pelusa went back into the yard two additional times that day. The second time is the later part of the video, filmed by a very sweet supporter from Argentina who went to bring Suz a surprise gift and was very excited to get to see Pelusa walk into her new yard. The last, Pelusa went in with no treats waiting, simply spending a few minutes back there.
That night her caregivers left her a trail of goodies leading into the backyard, with food spread throughout. Not only did Pelu eat her trail and most of her treats and hay, but a pile of dung indicates that she spent more than just a few moments there.
Little steps, but little steps that are truly enormous accomplishments.