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Two bloodhound puppies sit in the Barnyard.

Have you met Cindy and Sarah yet?

It’s been about 5 months since we welcomed our newest Barnyard residents, Cindy Pawford and Sarah Jessica Barker the bloodhounds! We’d love to share a little update on how our two 7-month-old pups are doing.

Cindy and Sarah have settled into Barnyard life well, and they are still learning to cohabitate with their fellow Barnyard residents: our four goats, five chickens and one African spurred tortoise (Sahara!). At 60 pounds each, the sisters may look like adults – but they’re very much in the thick of puppyhood!

Two bloodhound puppies race through the Barnyard.“Like all puppies they love to get into mischief- there’s just so much to chew on, so many places to explore, and so many people to meet!” said Madison Polk, our area supervisor of our Animal Ambassadors. “They require a lot of training, exercise, and socialization and the team has been working with them diligently on all of this.”

You may have noticed that our pups aren’t out ALL the time in the Barnyard. Cindy and Sarah participate in daily training sessions that are focused on creating positive interactions with the rest of the Barnyard residents. It’s hard to learn that your fellow animal residents don’t want to play tag when you’re a puppy!

“Both dogs are showing improvement in these areas, but we make sure every interaction is monitored and we give the other animals breaks if we feel it’s needed,” Madison said.

The sisters also enjoy regular training sessions that cover basic behaviors most dogs learn at home: sit, stay, down, recalling when called, and not jumping on people for extra pets.

If you have been able to meet Sarah and Cindy, you know they are very excitable and friendly puppies! They are eager to make friends with everyone and aren’t shy about introducing themselves.

Cindy acts as the big sister and is generally more laid back and confident, especially out walking in the Zoo. One of her keepers’ favorite things about Cindy is that when heeling on her leash, she likes to bring her front legs high and prance with her head held high, almost like a show horse!

Sarah plays little sister well and is more of a troublemaker, but she is eager to please and although Cindy is the more confident of the two, Sarah is more attentive on walks and has excelled at learning to walk on a harness.

“That is, when there aren’t new and scary things on the pathway. Some of the offending items she’s been suspicious of are feathers, wagon wheels, leaves, and a recycle bin.”

With positive training and lots of snacks, her animal care team has been able to build up Sarah’s confidence and she is able to make it past new objects with courage.

Both sisters love to play and sleep together and, despite the myriad of toys we provide for them, there’s nothing better than playing a game of keep away together with a plain old stick.

Brevard Zoo is an independent, not-for-profit organization that receives no recurring government funding for our operating costs. Your generous support enables us to continue to serve our community and continue our vital animal wellness, education and conservation programs.