Ever since college I have wanted to hug a lion. In National Geographic I saw a picture of a trainer hugging a lion and it kind tugged inside of me. I hung on to that picture for years. I loved it!
Anyways we finally got to see a lion up close. No fence! No barricade! Wow! It was kind of crazy because even though it was still a cub, you immediately knew it was "King of the Jungle"! This was no pussy cat! It didn't meow. It growled and while it didn't roar, the sounds that came out of it's mouth were wild, not tame and domestic. It's body and legs were muscular and thick and it could have easily taken down our golden retriever if he had been around.
To be honest I was nervous and watching my kids, who were then 7, 5 and 2, like a hawk. And even though it was only a cub, I couldn't quite manage to slide my arms around it's neck and squeeze!
Just thought I would show you it really happened. And for those that are concerned the family did send the lion back to the zoo, where I think it has stayed since.
Photos from 2007