Japanese Zoo Is Using Plush Capybaras In Its Restaurant To Encourage Social Distancing

A popular animal park in Japan is keeping visitors apart in the cutest way with the use of stuffed capybaras. Restaurants, non-essential retail stores and even recreational businesses are finally reopening after being closed down for months due to the global pandemic. However, businesses are still required to follow strict guidelines and certain restrictions to keep their customers and staff safe. For example, they require proper sanitization, wearing of protective face masks and social distancing should be observed at all times.

So, Izu Shaboten Zoo reopened its gates to the public on May 16th. While the whole zoo is following the guidelines it seems like one of its restaurants found a clever way to maintain physical distancing for the diners. The restaurant staff have placed stuffed toys on some of the seats to make sure that the appropriate distance is kept among guests. Now, diners can sit next to a cute stuffed toy while they dine.


This restaurant in the Zoo uses toy capybaras to maintain social distancing among diners


Aside from these cute creatures, there are also other plush animals seated throughout the eatery. But the giant rodents are obviously the stars of the restaurant. It is also important to point out that these oversized hamster-like animals are popular in Japan although they are not native to the country.

While, these giant rodents come from the tropical forests of South America, they arrived in Japan over 50 years ago where they were kept in zoos. Owning a capybara as a pet is still illegal in Japan. But zoos that own them are allowing visitors to pet and play with them.





So, the zoo is famous for this type of animals and the zoo has even built a pool where these cute rodents can happily splash and doze in hot spring waters. Visitors can also find them nosing around the zoo premises in search of treats.

Since these lovely rodents are the highlights of the zoo, its capybara-themed events and souvenirs are very popular among guests. So, when one of its restaurants used stuffed capybara toys to occupy some of the seats, the visitors couldn’t be any happier. So, how about going to Shizuoka, Japan for our next trip? Sounds like a great idea.







Source: Izu Shaboten Zoo