Shane Pappas, the manager at the swanky Pantai Inn in La Jolla, California was alerted by staff that the malnourished seal pup had pitched up in the bar.

“I got an email saying that we had a sea lion pup lounging on our patio,” he said.

A quick check of the Inn security camera’s confirmed the bizarre story, “sure enough she waddled her way up to the patio,” said Pappas to reporters after the sea lion had been taken away by staff from San Diego’s SeaWorld.

According to AFP the camera footage shows the young sea lion lounging near guests in the bar before she was eventually netted and taken away.

SeaWorld spokeswoman Terry Kelly told AFP the dehydrated sea lion is “is now on the mend.” Experts have been feeding the youngster through a tube and replenishing her fluids. They plan to release her back into the wild after six or so weeks of monitoring her condition.

A sea lion walks into a bar… Sounds like the start of an excellent joke.

Image: Getty