Before goats are thrown into the den of Primorsky Safari Park’s Siberian tiger’s cage, zoo staffers say goodbye. They don’t grow attached or even name them, as the animals are swiftly eaten — it’s the circle of life. All attempts to run by the goats are quickly proven futile as Amur pounces on his prey.
But recently, one goat chose a different strategy. Instead of cowering in fear or running, he stood up to the big cat. Strangely, rather than showing the brave goat his great claws, Amur rewarded him with something far…friendlier!
Amur is used to getting live game twice a week, but ever since Timur (he was given a name after the two struck up a friendship) bravely stood his ground, Amur only eats raw meat.
The two can often be found meandering side by side in the tiger’s pen. Zookeepers try to separate them, but Amur only hisses at them, as if to say, “Paws off my buddy!”
Check out more footage of the unlikely friends below. I recommend pairing it with Randy Newman’s Toy Story soundtrack in another window.
The introduction of live game is intended to recreate a predator’s sense of purpose while being held in captivity, but as Amur shows us, animals don’t just need habitats — they also need friends.