The lion was so excited!
After years of physical and psychological abuse, Will, a lion formerly known as Baby, was rescued from a traveling circus. The circus’s name was RioZoo, hailing from Brazil. The lion had been taken to the Rancho dos Gnomos sanctuary for a better environment. Will was never allowed to experience nature itself, apart from floors made out of cold cement caged by metal bars. Will had no freedom for 13 years. The staff at Gnomos pitied Will, and decided to do their best for him.
Returning Will to the wild would be suicidal and extremely unrealistic as the lion had grown up entirely in captivity. Will had no survival skills to aid him either. Staff at the sanctuary built Will a home of his own which was full of grass, stones and plenty of room to roam. When Will enters his home for the very first time, he was too excited! Will also adapted quickly to his new tranquil life.
Watch Will’s adorable reaction when he touches grass below!
Will became a resident of the sanctuary in 2006. For the next 5 years, Will had spent his tranquil days learning how to socialize and behave like a real lion in the wild. According to the sanctuary’s founder, Marcos Pompeo, Will’s favorite thing to do was to lie in the grass and look up into the sky. Sadly, in 2011, Will had passed away. He was 18 years old, but he would always be dearly remembered by the staff.