"Lion whisperer" and wildlife conservationist Kevin Richardson has an uncanny ability to relate to his feline friends. He's commonly seen cuddling with the lions, accepted as if he's part of the family. And as shown above, they feel pretty strongly about him.
"I have very close bonds with all of my lions, but I share a very close connection with Meg," Richardson explains in the video description.
Meg seems unconcerned at first when Richardson crawls over for a head nuzzle with Amy, another lioness, but that doesn't last. Feeling a little jealous, she pounces, using the length of her body to block Richardson from Amy. The two settle in for another snuggle.
Generally speaking, it is definitely not advisable (or safe) to have this close of a relationship with wild animals. Although he says he is doing his best to give his captive-born cats a better life, Richardson also cautions against a darker side to life in captivity. He notes on his website that all too often cubs in visitor "petting" programs at parks become prey for canned lion hunts when they're older.
There's no way that the lions in the video above can know the extent of Richardson's advocacy for them, but it's clear that their love is genuine, and the protectiveness mutual. Particularly in Meg's case.
Step back, Nala, there's a new queen in the pridelands. And she wants a cuddle.