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San Diego Zoo Capybaras

 

The Plushes head to the San Diego Zoo

Owner’s Blog:

I was out in California last week to visit my sister and I couldn’t pass up the chance to visit the world famous San Diego Zoo. Last time I was there, about five years ago, they did not have capybaras but I knew that they had a band of them now and I couldn’t wait to see them. Of course, I brought my two plush capybaras, Capycoppy (left) and Super Capy (right) with me. I also brought Double Decoy, the guinea pig in the middle. There’s nothing like going around taking photos of plush animals in a crowded area to make you feel crazy.

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Me and Plush Me


Me and Plush Me

Oh, my gosh! Oh, my gosh! Oh, my gosh! Plush me finally came and he is just the cutest thing ever! Do you see him up there next to me? Don’t we look alike? We are twins, practically, except for the size difference. Come to think of it, he is about the size I was when my owner got me. Can you believe that? I was that small! But I weighed a whole lot more, plush me is as light as a feather. And he’s as soft as one too, which is nice but not very realistic.

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Book Review: Capyboppy by Bill Peet

Capyboppy written and illustrated by Bill Peet

Book type: picture book
Ages : all ages but probably intended for 5-8

A drawing from Capyboppy

A drawing from Capyboppy

Synopsis:
This book tells the story of a pet capybara named Capyboppy that was kept by the Peet family during the 1960s. The story starts with teenage Bill Jr. getting a juvenile capybara to keep as a pet. Capyboppy makes himself right at home, scaring the cats, chewing on things, sleeping on the couch with Margaret Peet and swimming in the pool with Bill Jr. and his friends.

Things start to go bad when the Peets build an pen for Capyboppy out in the yard and Bill Jr. leaves for a long vacation in Mexico. The depressed capybara attacks a local kid who has come into his enclosure to feed him grass. Tommy Peet kicks Capyboppy as hard as he can, sending him to the bottom of the pool.

Eventually Capyboppy recovers from injuries sustained by the kick but the Peets determine that he is no longer a suitable pet. They end up donating him to the LA Zoo where he is put in the hippo enclosure. The book ends with Capyboppy happily eating all the hippos’ food.

Owner’s Review: FiveGreenHands_tiny
The drawings in this book are amazing. Bill Peet managed to capture ever nuance of expression that I see in Caplin’s face every day. In many ways, Caplin acts just like Capyboppy and in other ways not. For instance, Caplin loves his innertube that we got him largely because of this book. On the other hand, Caplin never chews on anything except your occasional cord. Both Caplin and Capyboppy like to sit on the couch but Caplin would never roll over the way Capyboppy is portrayed.

The lesson of the story appears to be that exotic animals don’t really make good pets. This is probably true for most people. The Peets don’t give much thought to the requirements of caring for a large, needy animal like a capybara before they get Capyboppy. They also don’t seem to take their responsibility for the animal as seriously as they should. And after Tommy kicks Capyboppy into the pool to protect the young neighbor, he spends two days doing nothing and yet the Peets do not take him to the vet or seek any veterinary help for him. That seems very irresponsible.

Even with the drawbacks mentioned, I think this is an excellent book. The drawings provide a wonderful insight into capybara behavior.

Caplin’s Review: FiveGreenPaws_tiny

It’s hard to be objective about this book. Capyboppy is my hero and the world’s most famous capybara (although I sometimes claim to have surpassed him). The artwork in the book should be in the Louvre or some similarly prestigious art museum where it can be appreciated by all and preserved for eternity.

Not only is Capyboppy my hero, he is my role model. Every pose I strike is an attempt to copy his elegant style, the sublime cuteness of his expression.

But the tragedy at the end is almost too much to endure. Sure Capyboppy looks happy in the drawing of him at the zoo but how could he be? I could never be happy if I had to go live with hippos instead of with my owner. My little heart would be broken forever.

Book About Capys!

If you’ve always wanted to read a book about capybaras, I have great news for you! My owner wrote a book about me…sort of. It’s actually about three cats who try to capture a capybara that has gotten loose in their neighborhood. The lead cat’s name is Celeste so I didn’t even get top billing. And the capybara is actually name Caplynn and is a girl, so I’m not all that happy about that. But it is a book about capybaras and it is loosely based on me, there aren’t many capybaras who can even say that much. Continue reading “Book About Capys!” »