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Animal Entertainment in Wisconsin - Feathered to Furry

International crane foundation

From petting zoos to interactive animal exhibits, you will find some of the most unique animal experiences in Wisconsin right here in Wisconsin Dells. To all of you animal lovers out there, this blog is for you. 

Family of four petting goats at Country Bumpkin Farm

Visit the Zoos in the Dells

Connecting with the natural world has always been a theme in Wisconsin Dells, whether that involves a scenic tour on the Wisconsin River or a hike at an area state park. Let’s add the animal attractions of Wisconsin Dells to that list, shall we? 

Let’s start with petting zoos in Wisconsin Dells and then work our way through the long list of animal entertainment in Wisconsin.

Petting Zoos in Wisconsin Dells

  • Wisconsin Deer Park: This classic attraction opened 70 years ago this year and remains a favorite among visitors. Guests can feed many varieties of deer here as they stroll through the 28-acre forest setting. The photo opportunities are some of the best in Wisconsin. In June, fawns are born nearly every day, giving you one more reason to visit. 
  • Country Bumpkin Farm Market & Lil’ Bumpkin Play Village: While the grown-ups stock up on fresh produce, honey, jams and pies, the little ones can beeline it to the play village where they can visit the sweet farm animals including goats, alpacas, chickens, ducks and their miniature horse Duke. The play village also features play buildings, pedal tractors and lots of classic rides and backyard games. 

Wildlife Refuges and Parks

Timbavati Zoo with kids

  • International Crane Foundation: After a multi-year, $10 million renovation and expansion, the International Crane Foundation recently reopened. This is the only place in the world where you can see all 15 species of cranes, all in a beautiful setting that includes wetlands, restored prairie, and forest ecosystems. Cranes will be “dancing” during the early summer breeding season, making this an exciting time to visit.
  • Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue & Educational Center: Here’s another non-profit group dedicated to educating the public about animals in the wild. Wisconsin Big Cat Rescue provides a safe place and a comfortable home for big cats that have been abused or abandoned. Ask about their morning feeding tour and night tour, or better yet, spend the night in one of the two on-site cabins for an unforgettable experience. 
  • Timbavati Wildlife Park: There are more than 400 animals representing 70+ species at Timbavati. The “Behind the Scenes” education experience is a privately guided tour that brings you up close to the park’s residents, including mammals, reptiles, large felines, and birds of brey. Make time for presentations by professional animal handlers in the Wildlife Education Theater and don’t leave without visiting the animal nursery.

Animal Entertainment in Wisconsin

  • Circus World: Visitors are often surprised to learn that the nearby community of Baraboo was the original winter headquarters for the Ringling Bros. Circus. Here you’ll find the world’s largest collection of authentic circus wagons and stupendous live performances under the big top tent. The inclusion of animals in each performance help tell the story of the American circus. The elephant trio is always a crowd favorite. 

Woman smiling and riding a horse at Woodside Ranch

Animals of Wisconsin Dells Include Mighty Steeds

Horseback riding is such an enjoyable family pastime. Make it part of your Wisconsin Dells vacation tradition when you visit one of these three local riding stables. 

  • Canyon Creek Riding Stables is themed to a western town with a trail that takes you past waterfalls to stunning Lost Canyon. There’s also a free petting zoo there.
  • Red Ridge Ranch Riding Stable offers a guided trail ride through 250 scenic acres of rolling farmland and wooded hills.
  • Woodside Ranch Riding Stables, a century-old dude ranch, is home to just over 100 horses. The trail covers 1,400 acres with scenery that wows. There’s a petting zoo as well with ponies, goats, and llamas. For the young buckaroo, there are pony rides in a covered ring.

Bonus: If you’re an animal lover, we’re betting your pet is part of your vacation pod when you visit Wisconsin Dells. Here’s a list of pet-friendly lodging choices that includes home rentals, cottages, hotels, campgrounds and resorts to make your animal-centric getaway a “sit and stay” kind of success for you and your furry friend.

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