Could anger over Cecil the lion lead to more conservation? - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Could anger over Cecil the lion lead to more conservation?

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - On Thursday, outraged continued on social media following the killing Cecil the Lion by a Minnesota dentist.

Cecil the lion was allegedly lured out of a Zimbabwe National Park and killed.

East of San Diego, there's a slice of the Savannah. It's a place where lions, tigers and bears can be found.

Bobbie Brink is the founder of Lions, Tigers & Bears. She opened the wild animal sanctuary because of her love of animals. It's what drives her.

One of the main attractions are the African lions born in captivity and saved from a failing sanctuary in Louisiana.

The news of the death of Cecil the lion, broke her heart.

"It would be like someone coming here and shooting our Bacari. There's so many community people that love this cat. He's protected here. That's why he's here," she said.

The killing of Cecil the lion has sparked a fire storm of anger, and Bobbie hopes it will shed light on a big problem here in the U.S.

"A lot of people don't know that lions are not an endangered species, they're not a protected animal. So believe it or not, there are more lions in captivity in the U.S. than there are in the wild," she said.

Bobbie said dozens of states still allow people to breed big cats for pets. Most of the big cats are usually kept in deplorable conditions.

"It's pretty bad because most of them we get out of little tiny disgusting cages where they just don't deserve to be," she said.

That's where Bobbie's organization comes in to save not just lions, but other wild animals.

She hopes the latest incident will send a message that spreads from America to Africa.

"I think this is a lesson learned for other hunters. That's no way to hunt an animal, that was torture," she said.

Bobbie said there should be no place to breed wild cats as pets.

"They're wild animals not matter what. You can't tame these animals. They're wild, and you can't get rid of their instinct. They just don't make good pets," she said.

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