Monday, February 23, 2009

When a lion attacks

Offer him a foot massage. Works every time....

Most people shy away from giving their partner a foot massage let alone dishing one out to a 40 stone killing machine.

But British park ranger Alex Larenty is made of sterner stuff and has no qualms about gently rubbing the paws of a lion under his care.

The 50-year-old regularly treats Jamu to a foot massage and these pictures make it clear the eight-year-old lion is appreciative.


The shots were taken at The Lion Park, near Johannesburg, South Africa, just weeks before a man who broke into the reserve was mauled and killed.

Mr Larenty, who is originally from Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, said the animal has complete trust in him.

He said: 'The photographs demonstrate how much at ease he is with me.

'Trust me, though, you need to know what you are doing and our relationship is one that has built up over the last six years. Jamu won't just let anyone touch him the way I do.

'We have 75 lions here at the park and I know everyone by name, Jamu is a star in his own right though.

'While these lions know me and they are tame in some way, they are still dangerous to people they don't know or in situations they are unsure about.'

So... you introduce yourself first apparently. Then offer the foot massage....


Coco said...

Amazing! How he do that? That is really a dangerous job... But you know the lion looks so behave and cute...

ellroon said...

I'll let him be cute from a distance!