Late Night Snuggle! Julie Bowen Gets Friendly with a Lion Cub

10/12/2011 at 04:00 PM EDT

Julie Bowen with Lion Cub on Jay Leno: Photo
Paul Drinkwater/NBC
She came to chat with Jay Leno, but left with cat hair on her dress.

Emmy winner Julie Bowen got up close and personal with an 8-week-old lion cub on Leno's couch Tuesday. The Modern Family star cuddled the adorable baby big cat as animal expert Dave Salmoni explained that the cubs will one day grow to be about 500 lbs.

"Does he want to nurse or anything?" Bowen joked as the cat nuzzled into her chest. "I'm fine, I've just raised a lot of nursers and he's sort of doing that motion."

While she mothered the baby lion, she shied away from a baboon that might have considered her as a threat. Later, she was happy to act like a pelican when the African animal (with a 9-ft. wingspan!) came before the audience.

"I'm doing my job, I'm totally doing my job," she said with her arms spread wide.

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