The Sad Truth Behind The Story Of This Lion Cub Who Can't Sleep Without His Blanket

12/5/2016

Some stories about our animal friends really do bring tears to our eyes. And this one is no exception. MeetLambert, a baby lion cub who was rescued by the wildlife rescue associationIn-Sync Exoticsin Texas, in2014, after he was bought illegally and used like a play-toy before being abandoned by his family, reportsThe Dodo.

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Source: @InSyncWildlife/Facebook

The lion cub was bought illegally by a family whose children, aged 3 and 5, had recently watched the Lion King and said they wanted their own "Simba". So their father bought them a lion.But after only three months, hisfamily got bored of him and decided to surrender the lion cubto the associationIn-Sync Exotics, explains the shelter'sFacebook post.

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Source: @InSyncWildlife/Facebook

Vicky Keahey, veterinarian and founder of In-Sync Exotics, immediately took the lion cub in and named him Lambert.Keahey couldn't believe how tame the lion cub had become since living in his former family's home. And what was more upsetting was how badly the animal took his abandonment.

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Source: @InSyncWildlife/Facebook

The little cub had clearly got used to domestic life and apparently even used to share abed with thegrandfather.Vicky realised that Lambert felt very anxious and disorientated in his new surroundings. He was so upset that he couldn't even sleep...So his rescuer decided to remind him of the comforts of a bed by offering him a cosy blanket. And it worked a charm, after a few minutes cuddling the blanket, he fell asleep.

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Source: @InSyncWildlife/Facebook

From that moment on, Lambert and his blanket have been completely inseparable. And each year, the shelter volunteers offer him a new one for his birthday, which makes him the happiest of felines.

Breeding wild animals is a popular practice in the U.S.

Today, Lambert is a two-year-old fully-grown lionwho lives a peaceful, serenelife at the rescue shelter. Sadly, he can never be released back into the wild as he has becometoo domesticated.The fact that Lambert clings to his blanket each night is a sad reminder of the inhumane practice of breeding wild animals in the U.S.

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Source: @InSyncWildlife/Facebook

According to a survey taken byNational Geographic in 2014, a shocking 66% of wild animals kept in America are privately owned by individuals.Perhaps even more controversial is the fact that it is actuallylegal to keep wild animals captive in 27of the 50 American states.

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Source: @InSyncWildlife/Facebook

Wildlife trafficking: a multi-million dollar industry

Illegal wildlife traffickingis a huge global issue which threatens the existence of many endangered species, particularly tigers, elephants and rhinos.Wildlife crime is sadly an enormous industryaccording to WWF who estimatethat it runs into hundreds of millions of dollars.To find out more about the urgent threat of wildlife crime and to take a stand against it, take a look atWWF’s anti-wildlife trade campaign.Beacuse lions like Lambert deserve to be roaming wild round the savannah, not hugging blankets for comfort.

Source: @The Dodo