A lion without his bite is hardly a lion at all, says Kevin Richardson, the famous Lion Whisperer. Aslan was suffering miserably from rotten and broken off canines, and the pain had changed him for the worse.
Aslan is a 9-year-old white lion that Richardson has known since it was a cub, part of the pride of lions he works with in the sanctuary. The pain in Aslan’s gums and head had “made him more aloof, more agitated, more aggressive, and he isolates himself from the pride…” explains Richardson.
Aslan the white lion goes under onsite surgery to have his rotten, broken canines removed.
After the surgery, Richardson hopes Aslan will wake up a new cat. However, the surgery is much more complicated than originally thought, and there are more dental problems that need taking care of. Check out the giant hole in Aslan’s gums after the canines are cut out!
Dr. Gerhard Steenkamp said in an after operation interview that once he got into the lion’s mouth, it was clear that there had been ongoing chronic infection, and that had burst up into the nose. Aslan spent some time recovering and on antibiotics at the sanctuary before being released back to the wild with his pride.
Now that the pain is subsiding the white lion can have his life back. He can eat well again, nuzzle heads with his favorite lionesses without fear of the pain, and be the lion king he should be.
The Lion Whisperer
If you haven’t heard of Kevin Richardson before, he has amazed the world by developing a very affectionate and trusting relationship with prides of lions in South Africa. He hugs, nuzzles, and play wrestles with them. They live on the Kevin Richardson Wildlife Preserve, a self sustaining carnivore preservation.
Richardson has actually just relocated his sanctuary and all the lions. They are now one hour north east of Johannesburg, and have made their home on part of the Welgedacht Private Game Reserve, which offers safari tours and aims to protect the wildlife there.
This is the video that launched Richardson into international stardom as the Lion Whisperer. He is treated like one of the pride, to a certain extent.
It’s a beautiful documentary, and an important one to share. Lions are being heavily hunted in Africa, and their numbers and habitat are dwindling dangerously low according to Richardson’s website.
“The lion population occupies less than 20 percent of its former range in Africa. Numbers are estimated between 15,000 and 30,000 depending on who is asked. This is alarming on its own. If allowed to carry on declining at the current rate we will have no lions left in the wild in as few as 20 years.”
We are directly responsible as the dominant lives on this planet to make sure they don’t head for extinction.
Richardson has made huge waves with his project, and public awareness and passion for lions and Africa are at an all time high, if judged by the number of people who’ve watched his documentary, which is 25 million on YouTube alone.
His most ambitious filming project so far was producing the feature length film White Lion. It took four years to make. The story follows a white lion cub that faces many odds to become a male lion with a pride of his own. Films like that can really help people to appreciate and love wildlife, and develop a desire for conservation.
Help support Richardson’s mission, share this on Twitter and social media with the hashtag #savingaslan, #savelions, #killthetrade, or #lionwhisperer. Raise awareness about saving the future of lions and other carnivores in Africa.
To make a donation to the sanctuary, click here which takes you to Protecting African Wildlife, the non-profit organization that Richardson works with. There are volunteering opportunities as well.