Play With Otters in Parkland at Debbie Doolittle’s Indoor Petting Zoo

Debbie Doolittle's Otter Experience
You too can have an adorable otter rest his head on your lap. Photo credit: Ily Goyanes

Otter videos are extremely popular on the internet and it is no wonder why. Whether an otter is gobbling up lettuce, taking a bath for the first time or getting a massage, the fact is that they are undeniably out-of-this-world adorable. If they appear so incredibly cute on video, imagine how gosh darn precious one would look sitting on your lap.

Yes, you heard right. Thanks to Donnie Miller, owner of Debbie Doolittle’s Indoor Petting Zoo, you can spend quality time with nature’s lovely, rambunctious water sausages.

We present to you the Otter Experience, a one-of-a-kind encounter — you might even say there is no otter experience like it.

Debbie Doolittle's Indoor Petting Zoo
All these people are here to visit me? Hooray! Photo credit: Ily Goyanes

For the price of $40 per person, you can book an hour with Blossom and Moe, two Asian short claw otters, inside their enclosure. The room includes a couple of chairs, the otters’ wading pool, their food dish, and of course, the stars of the show. The price also includes one cup of food that you can dole out to the other animals at the petting zoo, which, as of the writing of this article, includes a baby capybara and a couple of baby kangaroos. Both are extremely popular with visitors.

We spoke with Debbie Doolittle’s Indoor Petting Zoo employee, Cheyenne Wiegman, who was just as excited as the visitors about having otters around. She also enjoys being surrounded by goats, kangaroos, zebus, sloths, and a very cute four-month-old African sand cat named T’Challa after Black Panther.

“On a scale of one to ten, I enjoy working here like a 12,” Cheyenne says. “I get paid to play with animals all day.”

We totally understand.

Along with Moe (who is four-years-old) and Blossom (who is three-years-old), there is a third otter named Bubbles. Like lobsters, otters mate for life, and when Moe came along he and Blossom fell in love. So if you want one-on-one time with an otter, it is possible to schedule an encounter with Blossom, when circumstances permit.

So what can you expect when hanging out with otters? These otters are only semi-aquatic and both female and male otters are alpha. They are playful in the way cats are, so expect a lot of action. Moe and Blossom like to have fun, although Blossom is more rambunctious. Don’t be surprised if Moe claims your lap as a perch. They each have very distinct personalities.

Cheyenne Wiegman and T'Challa
African sand cat T’Challa happy to hang out with equally overjoyed employee Cheyenne Wiegman. Photo credit: Ily Goyanes

If you’ve been yearning to pal around with the adorable otters you see in YouTube videos, now is your chance. The encounters are available until April and get booked extremely quickly. In fact, within days of the encounters being announced on the Facebook page, over half of the available slots were booked. You must be over the age of five to kick it with the Blossom and Moe or Bubbles, but other than that, just wear comfortable clothes.

While you’re there, make sure to experience all that Debbie Doolittle’s Indoor Petting Zoo has to offer. It truly is a one-of-a-kind wonderland for animal lovers.

“It’s a rewarding job,” says Cheyenne. “Never the same day twice and you never leave with a frown.”

Visit your future four-legged friends at 120 138 Street S in Tacoma. For more information call 253-539-5011 or visit the zoo’s website, where you can book an encounter online.