PISMO BEACH (United States) — On an inflatable surfboard in prime California waters, first-time surfers Rebekah Abern and Elizabeth French paddle out to catch a wave under the watchful eye of their unusual instructor: Chupacabrah, a small black goat.
This one-year-old ruminant is an integral part of their lesson on Pismo Beach, effortlessly demonstrating the relaxed stance necessary to ride through the churning foam.
“The goat surfed way better than I did,” laughed Ms Abern. “She had the positioning and you can tell she had done it before… you could tell she was digging it.”
“Who gets to surf with goats? It’s like out of this world,” said the 41-year-old tourist from Montana.
Chupacabrah’s presence on the surfboard is the brainchild of two-legged instructor Dana McGregor, who decided a decade ago he would give goats a go.
But the problem with having a cute animal around — especially one that you’ve named “Goatee” — is that eating them can be quite unappetising.
“I just got attached to her obviously and never did that,” he said.
That attachment led to the idea of celebrating his birthday by taking Goatee into the surf.
Armed with a paddle, man and beast climbed aboard a board and headed out into the waves.
“I just experienced heaven on earth, like something supernatural just happened,” said Mr McGregor.
“I was like: ‘Wow, this animal would never have that opportunity to surf.'”
He hasn’t looked back since.
Over the years, Mr McGregor, a former Major League Soccer player, has had a number of goats with which he has enjoyed aquatic adventures.