"Kid"-napping ends when baby goat is reunited with its mother GusGus, right, sits next to his mother, Custard, after they were reunited at the Arizona State Fair in Phoenix, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2015. The baby pygmy goat that vanished from the fair came home to his mother surrounded by TV cameras and jubilant fairgoers. (AP Photo/Terry Tang)
"Kid"-napping ends when baby goat is reunited with its mother
Lexile

A baby pygmy goat that vanished from the Arizona State Fair came home to its mother. His disappearance prompted a Twitter campaign for his safe return. The animal was welcomed by TV cameras and jubilant fairgoers.
 
Dozens of employees and visitors burst into applause Nov. 5 as GusGus was gently placed in the pen where he was last seen. Several people crowded to watch mother and kid reunite. They appeared below a "Welcome Home GusGus!" banner and "Welcome Home" balloons.
 
Fair livestock director Karen Searle said a man walking his dog along a canal in Phoenix found GusGus and took him to a pet store.  A helpful worker reached out to the State Fair.
 
"They called the fair and sent pictures to our phone," Searle said. "We said 'It's got to be him' and it was him."
 
GusGus was hungry and tired but not injured. Searle believes someone simply dumped him near the canal and that he couldn't have been out there that long.
 
Finding him was especially urgent because he cannot survive without his mother's milk. The miniature goat weighs less than 5 pounds. The goat is still nursing.
 
GusGus was born last month and has not gotten all of his shots. Fair workers say they wish they could meet the man who found GusGus.  But he didn't even leave his name at the pet store.
 
"From the bottom of our hearts, we'd like to thank him," petting zoo manager Emilie Owen said. "He literally saved GusGus' life by finding him."
 
Families at the fair who had heard about the missing goat earlier in the day were also in an excited mood.
 
"It's good to know he's OK. He's so little," said Megan Zimbelman, who was there with her high school classmates.
 
Someone took tiny GusGus from his pen. The kidnapping sparked disbelief and masses of followers on social media who helped make the missing animal a hot topic. His disappearance sparked the hashtag, #FindGusGus.
 
"In over 30 years that we've been doing this, I have never had anything like this happen," Owen said.
 
The images of the mother, Custard, crying for her missing kid helped bring even more attention to the story. Petting zoo workers said Custard was calling out for her baby.
 
Searle said there are employees in the petting zoo at all times. So someone would have noticed if GusGus had tried to run off. Because he is tame and familiar with humans, he would not have cried out if someone picked him up.
 
"This was definitely an intentional theft. There's no way it was an accident," Searle said.
 
GusGus and Custard are part of a zoo of animals provided by the Oregon-based Great American Animal Entertainment Company.  It brings petting zoos to events around the country. The makeshift barn that houses the petting zoo at the Arizona State Fair has no surveillance cameras. Owen said it saddens her that now they have to change security around the petting zoo.
 
"Probably we'll have someone stationed at the exit gate from now on."

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why were officials sure that GusGus was taken?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (202)
  • graceu-sla
    11/15/2015 - 09:23 p.m.

    Because GusGus cannot just escape he has to be taken,the fence is around GusGus.

  • waverlyb-612-
    11/16/2015 - 09:41 a.m.

    The officials were sure that GusGus was taken becuase the baby goat was fond of people and would not have cried if someone tried to pick him up and becuase the goat would not have left its mother before it was able to survive on its own.

  • braidens-mci
    11/16/2015 - 11:25 a.m.

    thats nice of that kid

  • ericy-1-mci
    11/16/2015 - 11:32 a.m.

    The reason why GusGus was taken is because probably by the mother and the disappearance of GusGus. The crying of the mother would been why GusGus was taken and probably some evidence that was found.

  • meredithm-mcd
    11/16/2015 - 11:59 a.m.

    I think this is a very good story! #welcomehomeGusGus. I am very glad that Gus Gus has returned safely to his mother!

  • hailic-mcd
    11/16/2015 - 12:41 p.m.

    evan though they could have gone more in deepth into the story and there might have been some eye witnesses, this was a great story but i must add this was an awfull lot of work for one baby goat but i guess scince it GusGus was a baby it probly sparked more attention

  • lukes-mcd
    11/16/2015 - 12:48 p.m.

    Why would social media be so alarmed about finding a goat? I would be said if my cat ran away, but why was this goat, GusGus, so important (social media)? Lost and found pictures on street posts are one thing, but posting on twitter that you lost your goat.... thats seems a little over the top for me.

  • mietteh-mcd
    11/16/2015 - 12:55 p.m.

    Maybe Gusgus was sleeping when it happend and so when the person pick him up he probly would'nt scream for his mother like animals do when there taken from their parents as a signal for help because he was a sleep.

  • mackenzieb-mcd
    11/16/2015 - 12:57 p.m.

    GusGus is people friendly nd wouldent mind being picked up.He
    would have been seen if he just walked out of the petting zoo

  • gabeg-mcd
    11/16/2015 - 12:58 p.m.

    I think the story of GusGus is sad yet happy how he comes home unharmed and what's really sad was after he got found and returned he got kidnapped! This a somewhat tragedy for all those who knew GusGus.

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