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A remarkable eleven year friendship between a man and his rescued pet lion

Born in captivity to a lionness named Simba, Zion the gentle African cub was terrified of his father. Scared his father would kill him, Zion had to be separated from his parents. Frikkie Von Solms, a 69-year-old caretaker in Southern Africa, has raised Zion for the last 11 years.

Growing up together, their relationship is a unique one. It’s a friendship. Frikkie has raised several wild animals, but his relationship with gentle giant Zion is one of trust and care. According to Frikkie, Zion is just a big softie. When they walk together, Zion is bothered by noise so much, Frikkie has to walk barefoot.

Frikkie says, ‘It was a once in a lifetime experience to grow up with him and learn and live with him through all of the stages of being a lion. People talk about lions like they are just lions but they have personalities, they have humour and laugh. Zion is a gentle giant. He has never attacked humans and I trust him completely.’

How adorable!

Via Bored Panda

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About the author

She’s a Southerner with a Spanish degree from a Scottish university (of course, that makes sense!) In her spare time, she Instagrams pictures of Brooklyn.