This Adorable Lioness Cub Was Abandoned by Her Pride Until a Human Family Decided to Adopt Her
In February 2012, a female lion cub was found on the outer parts of a Botswana farm. The baby lion was starving and near death. She barely had enough energy to move. But luckily for her, a team of rescuers found her right before it was too late. There was no time to feel sorrow…
The rescuers named the lion cub Sirga. They provided her with lots of care and most importantly love in the hopes that she would bounce back. She was so young and yet she’d already experienced so much pain and heartache. She was starting to get better but they were still worried.
Sirga’s Botswana-based pride had welcomed three cubs, and she was one of them. Sadly, the other two didn’t make it. When the other cubs died, Sirga’s health took a turn for the worse. That’s when her pride abandoned her and she was left all alone. Without her family, Sirga’s outcome looked grim.
A conservationist named Valentin Gruener was in charge of the wonderful team that found little Sirga. He also led a campaign to bring the cub to his organization to begin treating the cub for exposure to the elements as well as malnutrition.
Valentin was the co-founder of the Modisa Wildlife Project in Kalahari, Botswana. With the help of a local vet, they discovered that the cub only weighed four pounds and needed to be rehydrated using an IV drip. But that was just the tip of the iceberg. The young cub had been put through the wringer.
Besides the IV treatment, Valentin and the vet fed her a special diet consisting of sunflower oil, calcium, cream, milk, vitamins, and fresh eggs. But only time would tell if Sirga would make a full recovery.
“To this day we believe she is probably the most spoiled and well-fed lion in Botswana,” said Valentin. And everyone at the headquarters was elated that Sirga had survived and she was growing by leaps and bounds. Little by little, she grew stronger every day and she was thriving.
Sirga had packed on 170 pounds in a year and she was looking healthier than ever. So, Valentin and his team discontinued her special diet and started getting her used to the type of meal she would find in the wild—pure raw meat.
Sirga saw Valentin and the others as her family. But at three years old, she had grown so big that the humans who had cared for her just couldn’t play with her the same way they did when she was a cub.
Valentin was the only person who could handle Sirga’s playful spirit because he had been with her ever since he had rescued her. So, she undoubtedly considered him her father, despite the fact he was human. But can lions and humans really become BFFs?