This is the touching story of the 11-year friendship between a lion and his beloved caretaker.
Frikkie Von Solms has dedicated her life to taking care of feral cats in South Africa, and at least 11 of those years taking care of Zion.
Zion is a gentle, tender-loving African lion born in captivity but separated when his father threatened his life.
Since he was born in captivity, he could not be released back into the wild, so Von Solms adopted him.
In the care of his new caregiver, he has transformed into a gentle little softie, surrounded by safety.
So much so that Von Solms’ had to take off his shoes while walking because it bothered the big cat due to the noise they made.
Von Solms said: “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience to grow up with him, learn from and live with it through all the stages of being a male lion.
“People talk about lions as if they were just some African cats, but they have personalities, humor, and laugh.”
“Zion is a gentle giant. He has never attacked humans, and I trust him completely.”
The couple is so close that they share a bed and a truck! Von Solms says he’s raised a total of 19 big cats, but Zion is “special because of the bond we share. I learned a lot from him.”
Von Solms wanted to prove that although lions can be dangerous, some of them are just big softy’s!