Timur’s Celebrity Weight Loss Plan

Dear Readers:

Regular readers of my blog probably think I am being paid something by Primorye Safari Park, (conveniently located in Vladivostok) to hype up their animals.  Well, I’m not, it’s just that, like many people, out of insatiable curiosity for celebrity gossip, I have been following the Amur-Timur story.  Where else in the Anglophone blogosphere can one read so many juicy details about this miscegenacious Tiger-Goat friendship?  It is my duty to continue with this right up until that moment when, as Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin  (aka “Essence of Evil”) predicted:  The day will come, probably in the not too distant future, when there will be nothing left of the plucky goat Timur except for “rozhki da nozhki” (“horns and hooves”).  Plus, there is an exciting new twist to the story!

“Ще вмер, Джим.”

Don’t worry – Timur is alive and well.  “Ще не вмер,” as the Ukrainians like to say say.  In fact, since chumming up with Tony the Tiger, he has been doing G-R-R-R-E-E-E-A-A-A-A-T!  And also putting on weight.  Which I personally find suspicious, I mean, how many carrots do you have to eat to get love handles?  In any case, Timur has been temporarily separated from his pal.  But not just because of his weight problem.  There is something else going on, something very seamly and salacious.  Inquiring minds wants to know, so please do read on, if you want to learn the scandalous truth.  But first some tips about nutrition, then a sure-fire weight-loss program, followed by some recipes for delicious entres.

Please don’t feed the goat

Investigative reporters discovered that on the morning of 26 January, an overweight Timur was separated  from Amur the Tiger.  Zoo workers cautiously entered the big cat’s enclosure at a time before the two chums normally take their morning stroll together.  They removed the goat and placed him into his own pen.  All of this done literally under the “eye of the tiger”, as Amur watched the proceedings balefully through the bars of his cage.

Timur was immediately placed in the “Veterinary Block” of the zoo.  Doctors want to (1) study him, (2) figure out why he put on weight, (3) put him on a slimming diet, and (4) remove all the fleas from his now-corpulent body.

Scrambling to deflect blame for Timur’s adipose enlargement, instead of admitting that they screwed up his diet, zoo keepers claim that tourists and visitors to the zoo have been tossing extra food to Timur.  And he has been gobbling it up.  You know how goats are – they’ll eat anything.

Officially, Timur’s daily diet used to be as follows:  Seven liters of a feed mixture (oats, wheat, rice, corn), and two liters of cut vegetables:  carrots, beets, yams, potatoes, and apples.  But starting now, they are going to cut his ration in half.  Because, like any celebrity, Timur needs to look good for his photoshoots.  Even more importantly, Timur’s weight gain is impeding his daily harrassment routine.  Watch the video embedded in this piece:  It is Timur’s job to harrass and irritate Amur.  But it is a sad state of affairs when a mountain goat can barely even wobble his fat ass onto a rock to taunt a tiger.  When Amur gives the goat a good flat-pawed swat across the snout at :25 seconds in, that should have been a wake-up call to Timur:  “Note to self.  Lose weight.  Get fabulous.  All the better to annoy tiger.”

Denn Wovon Lebt Der Ziege?

And the piece I just linked offers some other interesting facts and numbers.  One of the workers in the veterinary service of the zoo revealed the following to LifeNews:

When the goat was first brought to the zoo to be “sacrificed” to Amur, the zoo paid around 6,000 rubles for him, based on a formula of 150 rubles per kg of live flesh.  Doing the math, Timur would have weighed 40 kg back in November.  Only a month has gone by, and he already weighs 70 kg.  He is two years old, and his normal weight should be no more than 50-65 kg.

As for Amur, his diet has remained steady, as has his weight.  Every evening the big cat is fed around 10 kg of pork, beef, or fish.  On Wednesdays and Sundays, the tiger gets a special treat:  He is allowed to hunt and kill live rabbits.

Bride of Amur

But aside from nutritional tidbits, there is something else going on here, something the powers-that-be from the zoo have been concealing from a public besotted with the Tiger-Goat friendship.

Ussuri was brought to the zoo, in order to satisfy Amur’s … er …. needs.

Namely, Tiger Amur has been given a bride.  They say that she is a real pussycat.  Her name is Ussuri.  Well, let’s call her Amur’s “fiancee” or “intended bride”, because it has not been reported that they ever consummated their love.  Ussuri was brought into the park because it was thought that Amur’s fixation with a male goat was simply wrong. On several different levels.  (Recall that Russia is a traditional “family-values” type culture.)

But here is the scandalous bit:  Bride Ussuri has a sister name Taiga, who is equally as beautiful and soft and furry.  The two female pussycats are living together in an enclosure right next to Amur’s.  And conceivably competing for his charms, just like in some soap opera.

Double-twist: In an exclusive interview with LifeNews, Zoo Director Dmitry Mezentsev revealed that “Taiga” (sister of the bride) has gone into estrus.  And yes, without getting too gross about it, she is menstruating all over the place.  And I guess zoos don’t put maxi-pads on lady tigers.  According to Mezentsev:  “Animals, especially the males, get very irritable during such times.  They become aggressive and unpredictable.  Therefore, in order not to risk the life and health of the goat Timur, we removed him (for his own safety), and this also coincided with the need to give him a veterinarian work-over.”

This make sense.  Recall that Timur has never been to a doctor in his life.  In fact, his original visit to the zoo was only supposed to last for an hour or less.  It was never planned that he would have his own pen, or his own nutritional plan.  All of that had to evolve, once Timur made it clear that he intended to stay, but as a guest, rather than as a meal for another guest.

As for Amur, one hopes that the love match will work out between him and Ussuri.  Or him and Taiga, as the case may be.  But the zoo is right to treat this as a dangerous time, for both man and beast.  For an animal who only gets a rare chance to score, like only about every seven years or so, you just don’t want a pesky and portly goat getting in the way.

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19 Responses to Timur’s Celebrity Weight Loss Plan

  1. bolasete says:

    “miscegenacious”? not even in the oed. on the other hand, oed reports things found in print. guess you’ve assumed the sovereign right of coinage. kudos for boldness! you might want to cut back on the amphetamines; mere mortals cannot keep up with you.

    Like

  2. Cortes. says:

    Mezentsev is violating the prime directive by removing Timur. If Amur’s swipes get more aggressive towards Timur, so what? Maybe the Director is corruptly interfering with a workplace sweepstake on the date the goat world’s answer to Mr Creosote suffers a terminal weight loss?

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Dear Cortes:
      Actually, there was a new development to this story. I am thinking about posting it tomorrow, but I don’t know if people are getting sick of this Amur-Timur story.
      In a nutshell, yesterday Amur did get even more aggressive, he bit Timur on the neck and shook him like a parent tiger would a tiger cub, then tossed him off the rock. Timur kind of deserved it, he was harrassing Amur as usual, but Amur had finally had enough. He bit Timur, not hard enough to snap his spine, but hard enough to leave teeth marks on his neck.

      Timur is okay, the vets are patching him up, but he is psychologically traumatized. I saw the video on LifeNews, it is actually quite disturbing. After the attack, Timur staggers off, digs himself a little hole in the snow, and then lies down to rest, shaking over all
      Poor Timur has been living in a carefree world of denial, thinking that he is the “alpha” in this relationship, and he finally “got it”, what is his true place in the pecking order.

      After this new development, this story of “animal friendship” isn’t really funny any more, unfortunately….

      Like

      • Cortes. says:

        From the point of view of the park authorities, best to remove the goat or suspend coverage until the inevitable occurs. Too much scope for sentimentality driven PR nonsense and disaster.
        As for the animal shock, a couple of years ago a very fat pigeon executed a deft evasive manoeuvre right outside my window. The pursuing goshawk (I think a goshawk, don’t sue me if I was mistaken) slammed into the glass and fell dazed to the ground, about 1.5 metres, groggily stood up and staggered around for a minute or so then flew off. The fat pigeon, meanwhile, remained shivering in shock on my window ledge for about 45 minutes then disappeared. Close encounters with the big sleep have that effect.

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        • yalensis says:

          Yeah, animals experience trauma and shock, and fear of death, just like we humans do.
          In his whole life, Timur had never encountered anybody or anything, that had hurt him, or that he couldn’t boss around. He was just carefree, aggressive, mischievous. He played with Amur like he used to play with the dogs on his farm while growing up. Nobody had ever taught him to fear another animal.

          There was always lots of speculation about Amur, and why he didn’t just kill Timur on first sight. I have my own theory: Based on the new information that some female tigers were in a nearby enclosure and that one of them had gone into heat, my theory is that the female tiger hormones/pheromones acted upon Amur and made him vaguely think he was a father. So, when Timur suddenly showed up, acting like a naughty child, Amur’s paternal instincts kicked in and he started to treat Timur like some very strange looking tiger cub.

          I base this theory that I once owned a male cat, and when another kitten was introduced into the family, after some initial conflict and jealousy, he started acting like a dad. And tolerated lots of bad behavior on the part of the kitten. While sometimes showing some exasperation and swatting at the little one. So I think some of these animals, including cats, have some kind of paternal instinct, similar to a maternal one, and triggered in some way, by who knows what?

          In fact, in the Russian commentary to the latest story, the zoo curators remark how Amur’s sudden “disciplining” of the goat was very much like what these big cats do with their own misbehaving offspring; swat them, bite them, even toss them into the air. The problem is, that tigers cubs are much stronger and can take the rough stuff. Amur couldn’t have known that a goat is much more vulnerable, with a thinner skin, etc. Timur was lucky to escape with just some bruises and scratches, but no broken bones. Probably the worst thing that was done to him was his broken spirit.

          The main problem here is that both of these animals are operating on pure instinct, and neither one of them has the slightest clue what they are doing in this relationship.

          As another commenter remarks, “It is time to put an end to this experiment.”

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          • yalensis says:

            P.S. – I think I’ll just post the video here, in this comment, rather than doing a blogpost on it. There is no fun to be had in this, no humor to be derived.
            The last few seconds are actually quite heartbreaking, Timur’s palpable shock and sense of betrayal are almost Shakespearean in their pathos:

            http://lifenews.ru/video/14390

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  3. Lyttenburgh says:

    yalensis, extra!

    Goat Timur has been recognized as a political refugee fleeing Amur’s tyranny. Now he will be provided with bride – a she-goat named Merkel.

    http://lifenews.ru/news/182742

    Letter “M” – Multiculturalism..

    Like

  4. Ryan Ward says:

    I think Timur has a long life as a superstar ahead of him. Being “the goat that survived 3 months in a tiger cage” is a pretty solid claim to fame 😉

    Like

    • Cortes. says:

      Well said, Ryan.

      The Park should invest in a TV series featuring a Banana Splits type character for the goat that wouldn’t die (Drooper’s glasses, a must, camouflage leggings, a must, other attire, optional). Persona: the world weary vet, or Goatdom’s Jack Reacher.

      Like

    • yalensis says:

      Yes! Timur deserves his own reality show. What he accomplished was amazing.
      But first, he needs a personal trainer, he needs to get back into shape.
      He could also use some psychological counseling.
      Life can suck when your best friend bites you on the neck and hurls you from a rock.
      He needs somebody to listen to his story and assure him that things do get better.

      Like

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