Boredom, frustration, neuroticism, irritation, frustration and anxiety are just some of the 15 negative mental experiences of lions kept in zoos, sanctuaries and wildlife parks that our recently published research identified.

These conditions in the Mental Domain can in turn lead to abnormal behaviours and even physical health issues, as chronic stress and irritation can lead to fighting which can result in injuries and other health conditions.

For example, during welfare inspections on commercial captive lion breeding facilities in South Africa, the NSPCA – National Council of SPCAs found that predator and prey species were sometimes kept in adjacent enclosures without partitioning, which can lead to extreme stress and anxiety.

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