I need some advice. I'm new to this forum, so forgive me if I'm posting in the wrong space, I created this account just to ask for advice on this topic. Back in January, I got hired as an intern at a decent sized, privately owned zoo in Wisconsin. Shortly after I started working, the new zookeeper that had just been hired left leaving a job opening that was then offered to me. I'm finishing my last semester of college, currently driving back and forth between the zoo and school (90 miles) four times a week to finish classes. I've been training as a zookeeper since like the middle or late January and I want to know if the experience I've had at this zoo is typical for other zoos or not because I don't have any prior experience at other zoos. The zoo is seasonal, so over the winter, keepers get two days off a week and work from 7am to 3:30pm. Over the summer, keepers get a day and a half off a week and work from 7am to 4:30pm until the zoo opens at the end of April when there are three shifts: 5:30am to 3:30pm, 7am to 4:30pm, 8am to 5:30pm. We've started spring cleaning our exhibits and public spaces and the owners of the zoo seek absolute perfection in cleaning, scrubbing every speck of fly poop off of surfaces or we have to redo the whole cleaning. I understand that zoo work requires speed, but I want to know if other keepers are dealing with the same standards I'm faced with here because I can't seem to keep up with my coworkers and it's making me wonder if I'm cut out for this work or if this just isn't the right zoo for me. For example, we're expected to clean out (including raking poop out of large yards outdoors), feed and water the zebras, elands, camel and llamas, mouflans, emus, and six big cats in about an hour and a half. I've become very distressed, between juggling work and school while also trying to find a place to live and finance my move and feeling like I'm not progressing fast enough or doing well enough here. I want to know what the experience is like at other zoos, if it's similar, how other keepers felt just starting out and if they went through the same thing. I want to tough it out at least until after school is over because it'll be a different situation then but I'm really wondering if this is the right career path for me.