They say opposites attract, but this is a little ridiculous.
Last week, a goat sent to a Russian safari park as live prey for a Siberian tiger has instead befriended the big cat, and the two have reportedly become inseparable ever since.
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The Far Eastern Safari Park in the Primorsky region said it gives predators twice-weekly meals of live animals, but never before have they seen anything like this happen. %shareLinks-quote="Tiger Amur knows very well how to hunt goats and rabbits. But recently he came across a goat that he refused to hunt." type="quote" author="Zookeeper" authordesc="" isquoteoftheday="false"% So when Timur the goat was pushed into Amur the Tiger's enclosure as live prey, everyone imagined that that would have been the end of him. The foolishly brave Timur, unfazed by the situation, entered the enclosure and brazenly confront the tiger head-on.
But in a bizarre, Disney Movie-esque twist of events, Amur backed down from the confrontation. After assessing the situation, Timur proceeded to kick Amur out of his sleeping quarters, "banishing him to sleeping on the shelter's roof." Said a staff member from the safari park:
"The brave goat not only saved his own life. He kicked the tiger out of his bedroom and is sleeping on Amur's 'bed' for the fourth night. We named the goat Timur - he was just a nameless prey at the point when he entered the cage - out of respect his bravery."
Completely baffled by the situation, Russian zookeepers didn't know what else to do except give the two separate sleeping quarters and let the rest pan out.
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Since then, the two have reportedly become best bros, living in the same enclosure, eating and playing together in the snow, and even playfully head-butting each other. According to The Siberian times, they take walks together every day, "as if it were the most natural thing in the entire world."
#PhotoOfTheDay we only believed it when we saw it: this goat was meant to be the tiger's lunch, but now it bosses the big cat
Some animal rights activists have called upon the park to separate the two, posting on the zoo's website that Timur is "sensational" and that "he has earned the right to live." But zookeepers say that separating the two might be easier said than done, considering the protective attitude Amur shows towards his new friend.
%shareLinks-quote="[Amur] hissed at an employee who feeds the tigers, as if to tell him, 'Hey, don't you ever approach my friend.' Before that, he never showed any aggression towards staff." type="quote" author="Zookeeper" authordesc="" isquoteoftheday="false"% Besides, zookeepers don't really seem too concerned that Amur will turn on Timur anytime soon -- or ever, for that matter. Apparently, zookeepers believe that the reason for their friendship actually stems from their inherent differences. Amur the tiger, "quite cautious by his nature," resolved not to go to the trouble of hunting Timur. As for Timur?
%shareLinks-quote="We think that the goat never came across tigers and no one taught him to be scared of them." type="quote" author="Zookeeper" authordesc="" isquoteoftheday="false"% Mutual respect of each other's differences leading to friendship? Interesting concept.
Tigers just love making unlikely friends! Here's another one who is best friends with a German Shepherd:
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