Christian the Lion.

In 1969 London, John Rendall and “Ace” Bourke were told by a friend about an exotic animal department within London’s Harrods department store. Interested to see such a place the two men quickly visited the shop. When they got there, they spotted a 35-pound lion cub in a tiny cage.

“It was an irresistible sight,” Rendall said. “We were rather shocked when we saw this cub in Harrods in a department store in a very small cage. Not only was he totally entrancing, we must be able to do something better for him. He can’t stay in a cage this size,” he remembers thinking.

The dubbed the lion Christian and took him home to their flat in Chelsea. After a year, Christian had gotten far too big (topping the scales at nearly 200 pounds) and couldnt stay much longer as a house pet. Being in such a small space and being bored can often lead wild animals to create trouble, no matter how much they love their owners.

A chance meeting with the actors in the movie “Born Free”, a real life married couple, lead them to George Adamson. With lots of effort and patience Adamson was able to rehabilitate Christian and eventually released him into the wilds of Africa.

One year later, Rendall and Bourke decided to go see Christians progress. They were told countless times that the lion had become leader of a pride and would definitely not remember them.

They still went. 
(embedded video sometimes doesnt work)

 The obvious question to ask is, werent you scared of Christian approaching you at first in a walk but slowly into a run? What if he didnt recognize you? Did you think he was going to attack you?

Rendall referred to the film in describing the reunion. “You can see in that clip his body language,” he said. “When he first starts seeing us, he’s looking, looking. Is it us? Is it us? And then suddenly, he says, ‘Right, this is them.’ And down he comes. And there wasn’t a moment that we ever doubted that it was going to be a wonderful greeting … we never doubted it.”

This was the first and only reunion with Christian. It was 1974. “He still recognized us,” Rendall said. “He was with wild lionesses. He had a litter of cubs and his genes had been passed on back into the wild. After that time we saw him, he was never seen again. It was like a final farewell … he was completely integrated back into the wild.”


Seriously. True fucking story.

Had to use a clip from The View because I love the music choice. I’ve already seen this video about 15 times (showing it to friends) and with the song added, it nearly made me cry. I’m a girl, I know but the whole thing is just SO sweet and unbelieveable.

Do what the video says, get back in touch with someone today. Tell them Christian the Lion sent you.


“You know you cant raise your voice like that when the lion gets here”


~ by Mathy Shoots People on August 14, 2008.

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