South Australian Museum Dogs Exhibition
Review by Susannah Marks
Dogs: A Story of Our Best Friend
The latest exhibition at the SA Museum – Dogs: A Story of Our Best Friend runs until 26 April 2020 – and if you’re a dog lover or have kids who love dogs then make sure you go and see it before it ends.
We are a family of dog lovers so this was the perfect exhibition for us. We headed along and took some photos to share with you. The exhibition is chock-full of information about man’s best friend and also features some fun interactive experiences for smaller museum visitors.
Dog sculptures on North Terrace by Climbing Tree
Outside the museum on the lawn you’ll find a series of super-sized dog sculptures created by Climbing Tree who are the clever people behind several of our favourite nature playgrounds. My children enjoyed exploring these sculptures before we headed into the exhibition itself.
You can buy your tickets at the museum shop. You’ll also find an array of canine-themed gifts available for purchase.
Just outside the entrance to the Dogs exhibition is an interactive station which my little people made a beeline for. You’ll find stuffed toy dogs of different breeds attached by their leads to a “runway” with a touch pad and a screen.
Each dog has a tag attached which you can scan to find out what breed the dog is. When you scan the dogs they announce their breeds to you, sometimes in amusing voices. My son particularly liked the pug’s voice.
Throughout the Dogs exhibition there are a number of places for children to explore.
My smallest person enjoyed crawling through this little ‘dog-door’ in the wall. We also spotted a few high-school students who enjoyed crawling through it! There’s also a dog kennel that children can play in.
And as you would expect there are a number of items such as this statue which are strictly hands-off.
My children enjoyed trying to guess the breed of dog by looking at the skeletons. You can then confirm your guess on the touchscreens.
You can also complete a quiz designed to help you select the ideal dog breed for your family.
3D printed dogs skulls
Learn about dogs’ vision, smell and hearing
Although the science here was at times pitched at too advanced a level for my children, they still enjoyed putting on the headphones, pushing the buttons, and listening to the various sounds.
Zapper augmented reality and fun facts
If you download the Zapper augmented reality app (it’s free to download) then whenever you spot “Jumpy” you can point your phone at the ‘zapcodes’ on the walls within the exhibition and unlock fun facts.
There’s a screen on the wall that gives you a view into the world of stay-at-home dogs who are lucky enough to be left with DOGTV. It’s a 24/7 digital channel with scientifically-developed dog-friendly content designed to make dogs feel less lonely while their owners are left out.
On your left as you walk into the exhibition you’ll find a selection of orange boards with orange lanyards attached to them. Kids are welcome to take them and use them as they wander around the exhibition. They feature prompts designed to help kids to engage more with the exhibition.
Short films about dogs and their owners
You’ll find a selection of short films designed to illustrate the bond between dogs and their owners. My children enjoyed parking up and watching these. They particularly liked watching the behind the scenes footage of a dog breeder getting her dogs ready for a dog show.
Dogs in popular culture
My kids especially enjoyed this part of the exhibition and racing each other to identify the dogs from movies and cartoons.
Members of the public were invited to upload a photo of their dog with #samsbestfriend – you can see some of these photos in the exhibition.
This review was written and photographed by Susannah Marks. Originally from New Zealand, she now calls Adelaide home and loves getting out and about and exploring all the fabulous things for families to do in Adelaide.
For more information and all enquiries please visit the South Australian Museum website
What: Dogs: A story of our best friend
When: 29 November 2019–26 April 2020 | South Australian museum opening hours: 10am to 5pm daily.
Where: South Australian Museum
Who: dog lovers of all ages
At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.
As per all our Play & Go reviews, this is not a sponsored post and our review is done completely independently. All photos are by Susannah Marks for Play & Go. See her blog Seesaws & Cellar Doors for more of her photographs.
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