When German photographer Julia Marie Werner found a scruffy homeless dog hunting for scraps of food in her garage in Spain, she fell in love with him immediately. While other people saw nothing but a homeless mutt, she saw a brave little lion, and she now wants the world to share her vision with this heartwarming series of photographs.
“He already looked like Simba to me,” Julia told Bored Panda. “And I am a big Lion King Fan. A friend of mine had some fabric left over so one afternoon we stitched the mane together.”
The cute canine model is named Tschikko Leopold von Werner, and the project is called Grossstadtlowe, which means “Big City Lion”. And as you can see from these pictures, he really does look like the king of the (urban) jungle!
“In the beginning he was very insecure,” said Julia. “Someone who knows a lot about dogs told me the best thing is “working“ with him and teaching him some tricks. He loves jumping on things and using the mane. The picture are both a game and teamwork between us.”
Julia believes that Tschikko was left to fend for himself after being thrown from a car in Spain. He’s come a long way since then, not just emotionally but also geographically, as after deciding to adopt him Julia brought Tschikko back to live with her in Germany.
“Everybody takes pictures of him,” said Julia. “Little kids often ask me if he is a real lion!”