'Lion King' in real life: 6-week-old cub meets dad for first time

This isn't Simba or Mufasa, but it could be "The Lion King" in real life as a 6-week-old cub meets his father face-to-face for the first time.

The tiny lion is exploring the big world that is his holding area at the Denver Zoo. But until now, the cub and his mother, Neliah, were kept away from the rest of the pride, separated by mesh, KCNC reported.

They could see each other, but not interact.

>> Read more trending news

The cub and his mother were kept away from the others so they could bond and to make sure that Neliah showed traditional nurturing behavior, The Denver Post reported.

But recently Neliah and her unnamed offspring were allowed to interact with his dad Tobias, sister Kamara and his aunt Sabi, KCNC reported.

Once the barriers were removed, the lion was interested in exploring everything he could see.

"Already 12 lbs., this little lion is climbing up the ranks in the world -- as in he literally loves climbing everything and that includes Aunt Sabi and Kamara!," Denver Zoo officials wrote on Twitter.

The little lion now needs help getting his name, KCNC reported.

Zoo officials have three they are considering:

  • Meru (a Tanzanian mountain)
  • Moremi (a Botswanan game reserve)
  • Tatu (Swahili for three)

You vote by pledging money online.

The zoo also set up a lion cub registry as a fundraiser.

Neliah and the unnamed cub can be seen on television screens before they make their eventual public debut, KCNC reported.

About the Author