Heroes Learn Troubling Information About An Exotic 'Pet' And Decide To Intervene

By Matt Castoral

For those who can afford them, exotic animals have become a hot commodity for luxury pet owners looking to generate social media buzz. Yet while these animals may look cute and happy in their owners’ photos, their realities are often much bleaker than they appear.

One exotic animal’s life as a “social media pet” proved to be nothing like it looked online. Instead of being treated with love and respect, his owner exploited him for profit and made each day worse than the last. Sometimes it's not so great being King.

The sale of exotic animals as pets has become a major issue. In most cases, these animals live in dirty cages and suffer serious mistreatment. But when a group of animal lovers caught wind of one rare animal being exploited, they quickly jumped into action.
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In late 2017, videos and images surfaced online of a 24-year-old man abusing a wild animal he was keeping as a pet. A number of activists contacted law enforcement to see if this man and his "pet" could be located.
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An investigation soon began, with authorities using the man's posts to pinpoint his location. After weeks of searching, they tracked the man to an apartment in the French suburb of Noisy-le-Sec.

When firefighters arrived on the scene, they found the apartment deserted. However, when they explored further, they discovered a heartbreaking sight in the back room.

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There, huddled in the corner of a small cage, was a tiny lion cub. Judging by his size, this little big cat was no older than one year old.
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But the saddest part of it all was the poor shape they found him in. The cub was severely emaciated, and the many cuts and bruises on his body confirmed the reports that the little guy had been severely abused.
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