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Russians Mourn Timur, the Goat Who Befriended a Tiger

Yury Smityuk / TASS

Timur, a goat in Russia's Far East who became famous for his unlikely friendship with a tiger named Amur, died on Tuesday this week.

Elvira Golovina, Timur's guardian at the Primorsky Safari Park, promised to bury an urn containing Timur's ashes beneath a bronze sculpture of the goat.

The world first learned about the friendship of Timur and Amur in 2015, when he was sent to the tiger's enclosure as food — but fought back and made a friend.

The goat even occupied Amur's sleeping place, forcing the tiger to sleep on the roof. The animals slept separately, but walked together in the park during the day. Timur and Amur became favorites on the internet, with videos showing their friendship earning hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube.

Their friendship wouldn't last forever, however. After the tiger attacked Timur in January 2016, park workers decided to separate the animals. Timur, who was treated in a Moscow clinic after the fight, would never live in the same enclosure with Amur again.

Russian social media users shared their reactions, which ranged from sincere to snarky.

Some people expressed their sympathies and regrets...

Timur the goat is dead.
The end of an era.
My condolences to Amur the tiger.

It's a pity! :(
Timur is a legend

...Others called for respect...

“I think the goat, who died of natural causes (even though he had no chance), deserves applause.

...Received the news with irony...

“When is the funeral? Where is the burial ground?

...And called for moral lessons.

“It's hypocrisy to feel sorry for Timur. Not because he is a goat. Let me remind you that people condemned him to death a long time ago because he was food for Amur. Something just went wrong after.”

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