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He saved a lion's cub from certain death - now watch their union four years later





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When he was a child, Valentin Gruener developed a love for cats.

The young German man began caring for wounded animals in his home and dreamed that one day he would become a vet.

Then as he grew older, Valentin, who also loved to travel, decided to combine his two loves.

But he couldn't imagine where those loves would lead him ..

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Valentin traveled to Canada, where he worked in oil fields. But because he always had a passion for cats, he moved to where he knew there were very large cats - Africa.

In a farm in Namibia, Valentin met Mikel Gregor from Denmark. They both shared the same love for wildlife - and especially for large cats - and they became good friends.

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Founded in 2009, the Modissa Wildlife Project works to conserve wildlife in Botswana.

Over the past few decades, the amount of animals in Botswana has decreased by 60% due to illegal hunting, lack of prey, and human exploitation of nature.

Valentin and Mikel are working hard to put an end to this.

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And because of a unique and wonderful relationship, more and more people are becoming aware of the organization.

Four years ago, Valentin found an abandoned lion cub in the wild. She was about 10 days old and her mother abandoned her. If Valentin hadn't found her, she would have certainly died.

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Valentin called the cub 'Sirga'.

She survived thanks to her new "father", who fed her with milk, eggs, and vitamins from bottles.

Over time, the two formed a very special bond, which only strengthened over the years.

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The little cub weighed 9kg when Valentin found her, but today she weighs about 140kg.

But she did not forget her rescuer..

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Is there any doubt that these two are best friends?

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According to Valentin, she was always happy to see him. She probably thinks he's part of her tribe.

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Although Sirga looks like a big cat who likes to cuddle, the reality is quite different.

She doesn't like strangers - and only Valentin can come near her and/or feed her.

"We don't want Sirga to be like other captive lions that receive food from a never-ending stream of tourists", Valentin said.

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She hunts antelopes, and learned how to crawl, how to wait for an ambush, and to be patient - all she needed to be a successful predator.

But when it comes to Valentin, all she wants is love.

"I don't believe she'll try to attack me and I've never been worried..", Valentine said. "We trust each other completely and if I tell her to stay away, she listens."

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It can be whole days that Signa and Valentin don't see each other, but when they meet, it's as if nothing happened.

Watch the video below and see what an amazing bond this person and the lioness have.

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