Live goat meant to be Siberian tiger's lunch is now his best friend

The Touching, True Tale of How a Tiger and Goat Became Best Friends
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.

SEE ALSO: Santa Claus will be delivering puppies to people's houses on Christmas

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. 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.

Related: Click through some adorable unlikely animal best friends:
Unlikely animal best friends
See Gallery
Live goat meant to be Siberian tiger's lunch is now his best friend
(Photo by Inti St Clair via Getty Images)
(Photo by Mark Newman via Getty Images)
(Photo by GK Hart/Vikki Hart via Getty Images)
(Photo by Wayne R Bilenduke via Getty Images)
(Photo by Dorgie Productions via Getty Images)
(Photo by Fuse via Getty Images)
(Photo via Alamy)
(Photo by Gail Shumway via Getty Images)
(Photo by James Balog via Getty Images)
Kruger National Park, South Africa. (Photo by Heinrich van den Berg via Getty Images)
(Photo by Albert photo via Getty Images)
Friends sitting in the sun, Kalahari, South Africa
(Photo via Shutterstock)
A lamb and a cat playing draughts, watched over by a bantam, at Langford, Somerset. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
Dog Poppy and meerkat Timon in the bath at their home on July 14, 2011 in Dronfield, England. This meerkat and dog have been inseparable ever since four-year-old Timon was sent packing by his meerkat mob. The friendly animal found comfort in the arms of owner John Bent's dog, Poppy, and the unlikely pair have formed a mob of their own - which includes John, his wife, Sally, and their two children. You wouldn't expect a meerkat to be friends with a dog, explained hospice service manager Sally. They tend to stick very much to their own kind. The couple, from Dronfield in Derbyshire, has a collection of exotic critters, which started with a pair of skunks three years ago. Since then their menagerie has grown to include meerkats, raccoons, coatis and kinkajous. However, it is the relationship between six-year-old Chihuahua-Maltese Terrier cross Poppy and Timon, which is most surprising. The are inseparable, said John, who owns a surface coating company. Timon came into the house and instantly struck up a relationship with Poppy, who is just about as small a dog as you can get. Now they do everything together. They go for walks together and play together until they fall asleep on the sofa together. (Photo by Nick Obank / Barcroft Media / Getty Images)
Shere Khan the tiger, Leo the lion and Baloo the bear play outside at the Noah Ark Rehabilitation Centre in LOCUST GROVE, GA. Known as the BLT, or Bear, Lion and Tiger, these most unusual and unlikely animal friends are having to go on a diet after being spoilt too much. For not only do Baloo the bear, Leo the Lion, and Shere Khan the tiger have an unnatural bond, they also have a remarkable appetite too. Devouring almost 100 pounds worth of meat and vegetables a week between them, the rescued big beasts had developed something of an obesity problem. Staff at Noah's Ark Animal Rehabilitation Centre in the state of LOCUST GROVE, GA, decided to stop indulging their favoured guests and to put them on a diet after they each gained 100lbs. (Photo by Barcroft USA / Getty Images)
KATMAI NATIONAL PARK, AK - UNDATED: ***EXCLUSIVE***A female coastal brown bear and one-year old grey wolf relax together after fishing for salmon at the Hallo Bay estuary in the Katmai National Park, Alaska. In the seemingly most unlikely animal partnership ever this wild brown bear and grey wolf look just like they are fishing buddies. Showing a heartwarming moment when the pair - both wild -decided to forget their differences, the bizarre duo took an end-of-day break together just three feet apart. Both had spent hours trying to land a big catch during the first day of the annual salmon run in the remote Alaskan wilderness at Hallo Bay estuary, Katmai National Park. The pair - a 700lb female bear and one-year-old wolf - were both spotted by photographer Chris Dodds, 42, from Franklin Centre, Canada. He said: 'They were just three feet apart and they didn't seem the slightest bit worried about each other. It was very unusual. They looked just like a pair of fishing buddies and stayed together like that for at least two hours.' (Photo by Christopher Dodds / Barcroft Media / Getty Images)
Great Egret standing on the back of an alligator . (Photo by: Universal Education/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
Unlikely friends Green parrot dog and cat Venezuela. (Photo via Alamy)
(Photo by Les Stocker via Getty Images)
(Photo by Ger Bosma via Getty Images)
(Photo via Getty Images)
(Photo by GYRO PHOTOGRAPHY via Getty Images)

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

Posted by Russia Beyond The Headlines on Saturday, November 28, 2015

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.

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?

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:
Abandoned Tiger Cub and German Shepherd Become Best Friends
More heartwarming animal stories:
Pregnant pig leaps off moving truck on its way to slaughterhouse, gives birth to 9 piglets
Man's emotional reunion with dog goes viral
Smiling donkey is super happy after being rescued from flood
Read Full Story

From Our Partners