Rescued 11 years ago during a police drugs raid in Atlanta, Georgia, the three friends were only cubs at the time and barely two months old. They had been kept as status symbol pets by the drug barons.
Delivered to the Noah’s Ark animal rescue centre the decision was made to keep the youngsters together. “We could have separated them, but since they came as a kind of family, we decided to keep them together,” said Diane assistant director. “They are totally oblivious to the fact that in any other circumstance they would not be friends.”
“Baloo and Shere Khan are very close,” says DIane. “That is because they rise early, as Leo being a lion likes to spend most the day sleeping.”
It is wonderful and magical to see a giant American Black Bear put his arm around a Bengal tiger and then to see the tiger nuzzle up to the bear like a domestic cat.
Surprisingly for three apex predators with the power to kill with a single bite or swipe of their paw, they are very relaxed around each other. “They eat, sleep and play together,” said Jama , founder of Noah’s Ark sanctuary. “As they treat each other as siblings they will lie on top of each other for heat and simply for affection. “They are obviously not wild animals any more, Noah’s Ark is their home and they could not possibly be separated from each other. You just have to remember who you’re dealing with when you are with them though.”