Colorado sanctuary will rescue 30 very expensive lions

The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg will take delivery of a record-breaking 30 lions this April, founder Pat Craig told the Greeley Tribune.

But the lion rescue comes with a big price. The sanctuary estimates that they will spend approximately $250,000 per year caring for the lions. Over their lifetime, 15 to 20 years, the cost could exceed 4 million dollars. And the lions will likely arrive in bad shape, Craig told the paper:

Most will need dental work and will probably be skinny. In another lion rescue, in 2011 from Bolivia, many had never touched grass before. Craig expects the coming lions to be in similar condition.

“There were two [male lions] who kept trying to run and would fall down like they were drunk just because they had never built the motor skills to do that,” Craig said. “It’s not like circuses here where the animals get out and perform everyday. Circuses down there, it’s usually just someone who has an exotic animal and they charge people to look at them.”

Fortunately for the sanctuary, it seems many people have donated money to support their efforts: