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Wildlife Wish Comes True

Emily receives her honorary doctorate to become a veterinarian at the Pittsburgh Zoo.
Lions and tigers and bears, she’ll find! Emily, a seven-year-old animal lover and aspiring veterinarian from Towanda, Pa., had her wish to be a zookeeper granted at the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium on Wednesday, June 24.

Just before the Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium opened for the public, Emily began her official obligations as zookeeper. In the morning at the Animal Care Center, Emily received an honorary doctorate and joined the team in an exciting alligator exam. Later, she participated in an examination of two ten recs and accompanied Dr. Ginger on a Zoo House Call.  But her untamable fun didn't stop there. After her duties were fulfilled, Emily and her family spent the rest of her wildlife wish roaming the 77-acre facility. 


  • Emily and her family arrive at the Pittsburgh Zoo.

  • Emily holds up her diploma.

  • Dr. Emily charts her patient's progress.

  • Dr. Emily smiles.

  • Dr. Emily watches on as her patient, Hawkeye the alligator, is examined.

  • Examining a ten rec

  • Taking a sonogram of the ten rec

  • Examining a ten rec

  • Emily spots a penguin.

  • Emily meets a penguin.

  • Posing with a penguin.

  • Dr. Emily is sure to snap photos of her penguin patient.

  • Checking in with a sea lion.

  • Sea lion dancing

  • Emily's dad holds up canvas for sea lion to paint.

  • Emily poses for a photo as zoo staff holds up a sea lion painting.

  • Emily smiles as she is introduced by zoo staff.

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