The Cutest Videos and Photos of Animals Celebrating Christmas

From opening gifts to playing with Santa, these animals are in the holiday spirit. A furry koala, octopus, kangaroos and elephants complete this adorable collection

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koala tree
1300Koalaz/ facebook

One Australian family got a particularly festive furry surprise when they came home to find a koala climbing their Christmas tree.

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Gorillas celebrate xmas
ZSL London Zoo

ZSL London Zoo made a special delivery to their gorilla pals in the form of wrapped "Christmas presents" that the animals enjoy playing with, plus exposure to some Christmas music. Their top pick? Naturally, Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You."

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Groot the Octopus, a resident of the Aquarium of the Pacific, loves Christmas goodies as much as anyone else — check out how fast he gets his treats tin open!

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The kangaroos at Zoos Victoria in Australia are bouncing with excitement about their gifts.

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In 2019, Santa visited the Cincinnati Zoo's animals, dropping off gifts for the red pandas and cheetahs, plus an extra-big box for its most famous resident, Fiona the hippo.

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zoo llama eats holiday decorations
Courtesy ZSL London Zoo

Fa la la la llama! The ZSL London Zoo's llamas, Ande and Dainty, made the "naughty list" for digging into the zoo's (edible!) holiday decorations before visitors got a chance to see them.

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The gorillas at Zoos Victoria were such superfans of Michael Bublé's Christmas album that they listened to it year-round. In 2020, the singer visited the primates to give his biggest fan-imals an in-person concert.

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At Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo, even the seals enjoy the annual Zoo Lights exhibit.

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Steve Goodall/Oakland Zoo

Who needs sugar cookies? For the elephants at the Oakland zoo, leftover Christmas trees were the treat.

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Courtesy Dancers and Dogs
Courtesy Dancers and Dogs

Dance of the sugar plum ... puppies? The St. Louis Ballet lent a little Nutcracker magic to adoptable shelter pets in hopes of finding them homes.

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meerkat letters to santa
ZSL London Zoo

The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to meerkat. The furry pals at ZSL London Zoo got their own letters to Santa mailbox to send along their Christmas wishes. (And they'll probably get what they asked for: The mailbox is filled with crickets!)

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We also want a hippopotamus for Christmas after seeing these pygmy hippos munching on evergreens at the San Diego Zoo.

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The Cincinnati Zoo stuffed some stockings for some very curious animals — and our Christmas wish is for even more videos of them being "opened."

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The takins at the San Diego Zoo didn't have to dream of a white Christmas: The zookeepers brought them some ice, snow and edible wreaths!

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The St. Louis Zoo's sea lion seems awfully interested in borrowing that Santa hat.

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At the Brookfield Zoo outside Chicago, children can send letters to the animals. Reindeer Josie and Bunny were there to supervise drop-off in 2020.

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Scuba Santa goes from the North Pole to under the sea with the Adventure Aquarium's hammerhead shark.

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Another aquarium with a Scuba Santa in residence, the Newport Aquarium, shared a video of Santa "scratching the back" of the aquarium's grouper with gravel.

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