Lion Cub and Puppy Form Friendship at Zoo
Strange pairing of dog and cat is working at San Diego Zoos Wild Animal Park.
Dogs and cats may not get along well, but apparently dogs and lions can become the best of friends.
Koza, an African lion cub born on Nov. 11 at the San Diego Zoos Wild Animal Park, is getting used to his new playmate, an Italian Mastiff puppy named Cairo.
The unusual pair was introduced because Kozas mother is still recovering from delivering her cub through a Caesarean section. Knowing that lions are social animals that need interaction, keepers decided to find a suitable canine after searching unsuccessfully for another lion cub Kozas age.
Cairo, adopted from a San Diego shelter, was born after her mother was rescued from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
So far the pairing has worked, according to animal keeper Marcia Redding. The young animals were introduced slowly, and Koza was initially shy when Cairo tried to jump on him and wrestle. Now, the friends spend time pouncing on each other and playing with toys.
Koza eventually will go to the parks Lion Camp exhibit, and will join a pride when he is large enough.
Posted: Feb. 3, 2006, 5 a.m. EST
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