Image: Goat's retirement parade
AP
Goat Maj. L/Cpl. Ryan Arthur of the 1st Battalion, The Royal Welsh, leads the regiment's goat William Windsor on his retirement parade on Wednesday
updated 5/20/2009 12:54:24 PM ET 2009-05-20T16:54:24

The Royal Welsh Regiment is saying farewell to a four-legged military buddy.

After seven years of U.K. Army service, Billy the goat, whose full name is William Windsor, retired amid pomp and ceremony on Wednesday.

The nine-year-old will enjoy his retirement at a zoo outside of London.

The battalion has had a goat in its ranks for more than 200 years. The tradition dates to the U.S. Revolutionary War when a wild goat wandered onto a battlefield and ended up leading the regimental colors at the end of a battle.

To this day, the regimental goat marches in front of the battalion in ceremonies.

Billy's replacement will be unveiled next month when a kid will be selected from a herd in north Wales.

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