RED LODGE, MT—As they begged the visibly distraught ungulate to climb back down the sheer rocky slope, a mountain goat’s loved ones reportedly spent several tense minutes Friday talking him off a high peak from which he appeared ready to jump to his death. “Hello, friend, I want to let you know there are a lot of goats here who care about you very much and really want to see you make it back down safely,” shouted a goat of high rank within the herd’s dominance hierarchy, addressing the adult male who paced nervously along the side of a 200-foot, nearly vertical surface and occasionally let out pained bleat, bucked into the air, and threatened to jump. “We know things haven’t been easy for you lately, especially when you took that horn to the stomach from a rival back in mating season. You’ve barely been grazing, and your beard has grown unkempt. But this isn’t the answer. You still have a lot to offer: You’re a good billy, and I’m certain you’ll make a nanny very happy someday.” According to sources, the suicidal goat eventually returned to safe ground, giving in to entreaties that he “come down here so we can talk about all this over a salt lick.”
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