The keepers at the Saint Louis Zoo work to enrich the lives of the animals in their care every day. They add interesting and complex activities to the animals' daily routine. Enrichment activities are fun for both animals and keepers. Saint Louis Zoo keepers offer animal-safe paints and canvas to some of our species, resulting in beautiful works of art. Every original painting is very different from the next.
Proceeds from the sale of animal artwork benefit the St. Louis Chapter of American Association of Zoo Keepers (AAZK) for projects and programs to save endangered and threatened species from extinction.
Items for sale are listed at the AAZK website.
Animals That Paint
Animals that paint include:
- Sea lions
Occasionally, we have miscellaneous other species' art or receive paintings from our friends at the Endangered Wolf Center. When these are available, you'll see our limited edition section of the store is open, and the species will be listed below.
Please note that not all canvas sizes will be available for each species. For example, the hippo and rhino only paint with 5x7 and 8x10 canvases. Our sea lions do not paint 16x20 paintings.
We also offer art prints of previous paintings for $10. These are done on high quality art paper and are easily matted and framed:
- Grizzly paw
- Tiger paw
- Tiger nose
- Penguin print
- Rhino print
- Hippo print
- Snake print
We occasionally offer limited edition novelty items as well, such as:
- Golf balls collected at the Saint Louis Zoo WildCare Park (formerly a golf course)
- Holiday ornaments
- Tote bags
Click here to shop for paintings and make an order online.
Animal Art FAQs
Thank you for your interest in our animals' art and in supporting AAZK! We hope that this information will be helpful to you in your search for the perfect art piece.
Since our paintings are done as an enrichment activity, and our storefront is run on a "by availability" basis, we cannot accommodate color requests.
Due to the high volume of requests that we receive, our inventory is very fluid. It is not feasible for us to share images of the paintings.
The keepers paint with the animals as a form of enrichment. Keepers are monitor the animal(s) closely during the process and cannot take photos.
Shipping is included in the cost of the painting!
Unfortunately, we are unable to accommodate order pickups due to staffing logistics and constraints. The paintings are only available via mail, but the cost of shipping is included in the price of the painting
As a non-profit, volunteer organization, we are unable to accommodate these requests. We store these paintings off-site, and have a single set shipping date each week.
Unfortunately, not at this time. We are able to accommodate APO boxes.
We do! We offer prints of certain species' paintings for $10 each. They are on high-quality paper and easily matted or framed. We occasionally have novelty items as well – please check our storefront!
There is no dedicated phone line for AAZK or the volunteer-run animal art program, and do not use the phone to discuss orders. Due to the nature of our jobs, we are often not near a phone or computer. Our policy is to communicate strictly by email, in order to keep written record of orders.
For several animal areas, we have opted to provide the general term: snake, primate, insect, etc., so that we can give you a painting that best fits your needs ASAP. We still indicate the species that created your specific painting on the canvas. We try to list species' examples in the storefront header though whenever we can!
Occasionally, we have miscellaneous other species' art or receive paintings from our friends at the Endangered Wolf Center! When these are available, you'll see our limited edition section of the store is open, and the species will be listed below.