The Blood Lions and World Animal Protection research team reviewed over 90 scientific papers and identified 170 different physical and psychological conditions associated with the keeping of lions in captivity.

Our researchers found that:

  • 124 conditions were in the Health Domain such as disease and injury;
  • 19 conditions were behavioural problems like abnormal pacing or self-harm;
  • 15 conditions affected the lion’s mental state such as fear and anxiety;
  • 7 conditions were linked to the nutrition the lions received, such as too much or too little food;
  • 5 conditions were associated with environmental challenges such as a lack of stimulation. 

These conditions provide us with insight into the significant challenges experienced when keeping lions and other big cats in captivity. 

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