Lions are incredible animals, majestic, regal and deadly - I can understand why unsuspecting tourists want to get up close and personal with them. Tragically though, the new trend in 'walking with lions' and petting lion cubs cause a lifetime of suffering to these lions and by participating, tourists are helping to fund their ongoing torture. There are of course many ways to see lions in their natural environment; such as on a responsible safari. Here you can see their true behaviours and witness what really makes lions the awe-inspiring kings of the jungle.
The lions that 'walk' with tourists will typically be hand-reared to develop the necessary strong bond with humans (Hunter et al., 2013). They will never get the chance to live as a real lion. They will never learn how to hunt, they will never get to spend hours of the day playing with the other cubs and adults in the pride, and they will not get to spend their adolescence with their mother, learning from her, and being nurtured by her. The result is abnormal adult lions who don't have the necessary social and survival skills for life in the wild (Hunter et al., 2013). So the claims made about these lions being the 'real thing', and 'living as nature intended', couldn't be further from the truth.