Video of Girl Carrying Struggling Lion Cub Down the Street Goes Viral, Sparking Debate

A video posted on Reddit of a girl carrying a lion cub as it struggled to get away has gone viral.

The video was shared Sunday in the thread r/WTF, and it has since garnered a lot of attention from people online.

The situation occurred in Kuwait City, where environmental police were notified about a lion on a street in the Sabahiya area, according to the Arab Times. The lion's owner, a girl, and her father—assisted by the police and people who had raised the cub—were able to recapture the animal.

The girl in the video, seen on the left, then walked down the street carrying the lion cub by its upper body as it tried to get free and growled. Flashing lights appeared in the direction she was coming from.

She eventually let the cub go, and it got its bearings and sat on the ground before the video cut off.

Declines are being seen in three-quarters of Africa's lion populations, according to the World Wildlife Fund, with only about 20,000 of the animals left in the wild. They are officially classified as "vulnerable," the WWF said.

The viral video has been up-voted over 31,000 times, with some people making jokes and others theorizing about what happened.

Lion cub in Kenya
A video of a girl carrying a struggling lion cub down a street in Kuwait City has gone viral. Above, a lion cub in Kenya. STUPORTS/GETTY

"Looks like a mom dragging a kid way too old to be throwing a temper tantrum out of Game Stop," a Redditor joked.

The jokes didn't stop there. "Had a little too much fun at the cubhouse," another viewer wrote.

A Redditor thought the video might be showing a fire department responding to "where someone had the cat as an illegal pet, and they were trying to hide it from the emergency responders."

One viewer speculated that the animal could have been drugged, adding, "Pretty common for the, uh, less ethical side of the exotic pet trade."

Another Reddit user thought the cub was tranquilized, noting it "doesn't seem like it has full motor control." The person theorized that the medication was wearing off at the time of the video.

A viewer who worked in a veterinarian's office for a few years said: "This does not seem like a normal/healthy interaction between pet and owner, and the cat does not seem to have full motor control. Animals are often very spastic and scared when they first wake up from sedation, and I feel like that is the case here."