Bedtime Story - Story of Mouse Deer and a Farmer - A Children's Story

A hungry mouse deer or sang kancil, as we called them.
A hungry mouse deer or sang kancil, as we called them. | Source

Children's Story from Malaysia

Mouse deer is a trickster character in our Malaysian folklore. He will always outwit and overcome the bigger and much stronger animals, who are his arch enemies. It is quite similar to the American Brer Rabbit.stories.

Tales of the tricky and cunning Mouse Deer or Sang Kancil as we called him, is a favorite children's story.

'Bedtime Story - Story of Mouse Deer and a Farmer- A Children's Story' is my third Sang Kancil story. You can read my earlier Sang Kancil stories, through these links:


Bedtime Story - Story of Mouse Deer and a Farmer

Sang Kancil was tired of eating the same fruits and leaves in the forest. His monkey friends had told him before that there is a farm with lots and lots of fresh vegetables. So one day he decided to explore and went to the edge of the jungle looking for this farm.

After a few hours of trekking through the jungle, he finally arrived at the farm. There, he saw his favorite cucumber. Since there's no one around, he slowly crept into the farm and ate almost all the cucumbers!. He was about to eat the last cucumber when he heard the farmer. He quickly ran back into the jungle.

Farmer checking the farm - Children's story of mouse deer and a farmer is very popular not only in Malaysia but also in Indonesia and Philippines.
Farmer checking the farm - Children's story of mouse deer and a farmer is very popular not only in Malaysia but also in Indonesia and Philippines. | Source

The angry farmer

When the farmer arrived at the cucumber patch, he saw it's all gone. 'What happened to all the cucumbers?' asked the bewildered farmer. 'I must find the rascal responsible for this'

So the farmer makes a few traps and placed them all over the farm.

Sang Kancil caught in the trap?

The following week, Sang Kancil decided to visit the farm again. He missed those delicious cucumbers. So, he went back to the farm, but only to be caught in the trap. 'Owwww stupid me! I should have been more careful. Now that old farmer will cook me for dinner!'

When the farmer heard noises outside, he quickly went out. The mouse deer saw him coming and quickly think of a trick, in order to save himself.

'Oh oh, so it was you who ate all my cucumbers.' He kicked Sang Kancil, but the mouse deer stayed still and pretended to be dead. 'Is he dead?' He kicked the mouse deer again. Sang Kancil did not move and his stiff body convinced the farmer that he is dead.

'What a shame. He is probably dead for a while already. I can't have him for dinner now. I should have come out earlier to check' thought the disappointed farmer. He released the trap and threw the mouse deer back into the jungle. Sang Kancil quickly moved and ran away. He heard the farmer cursing and shouting back at him, 'You rascal, you tricked me. You will not get away the next time'

The greedy Sang Kancil

The greedy Sang Kancil kept thinking of the other vegetables that he hasn't eaten.

'The cucumbers were juicy and tasty. I must try the other vegetables, but should I or shouldn't I go?' thought Sang Kancil. The last time he went, he was caught in the trap.

After a few minutes of thinking, he finally decided to try his luck again.

When Sang Kancil arrived at the farm, he was disappointed. He saw the farmer standing next to the vegetable patch. He wasn't sure what to do next. He kept staring at the farmer to see if he will go away. But the farmer kept still and didn't move a single bit. Sang Kancil was curious and decided to test the farmer. He moved in the direction of the farmer. Still no movement from him.

The scarecrow - used by farmer to trick the mouse deer
The scarecrow - used by farmer to trick the mouse deer | Source
Jack fruit tree with sticky sap used by farmer to trap the mouse deer
Jack fruit tree with sticky sap used by farmer to trap the mouse deer | Source

It's a Scarecrow!

As Sang Kancil neared the farmer, he finally realized it is not the farmer, but a scarecrow instead.

Angry for being tricked, the arrogant Sang Kancil kicked the scarecrow. He kept kicking until his leg got glued to the scarecrow.

Apparently the farmer had covered the scarecrow with sticky fluid, from the nearby jack fruit tree.

Stuck to the Scarecrow

'Let me free!' said Sang Kancil. He yanked and he yanked, but was still stuck to the scarecrow.

He used the other leg to pull himself away, but that leg got stuck too.

'Let me go!' He pushed and he pulled. Still no luck. He then used his two back legs. That too, got stuck.

Farmer came out to check

When the farmer heard noises outside, he went out to check. 'Ah ha. I finally got you' said the farmer. The mouse deer was trying to think hard. He needs to escape, but was too scared to think properly.

The farmer pulled Sang Kancil from the scarecrow and took him back to his house. 'I will put you in this cage for the night and tomorrow, I will have you for my lunch and dinner. Ha ha ha' said the happy farmer.

The curious farmer's dog checking on the mouse deer
The curious farmer's dog checking on the mouse deer | Source

Escape Plan

All night long, Sang Kancil kept thinking of an escape plan, but was too sleepy to think properly. In fact, he was so scared that he couldn't sleep at all.

When morning came, he heard something. It was the farmer's dog. The dog was curious and came to check what was in the cage. 'So my master finally caught you. Serves you right'

Sang Kancil immediately thought of an idea. 'No, your master didn't catch me. He put me here so that others will not know'

'What do you mean, others will not know?' asked the dog.

The grand feast

'Don't you know? Your master will be hosting a grand feast and I am the guest of honor. He doesn't want others to know yet. It's supposed to be a surprise' bluffed Sang Kancil.

'I have been with my master for so many years now. It isn't fair that he chooses you over me. I should be his guest of honor. Others will definitely agree with me'' said the dog

'Hmm, you are right. I feel sorry for you and I know how you feel.' said Sang Kancil. 'Why don't I tell your master about this. I will talk to him and see if he will make you his guest of honor. I am sure he will listen and agree with me'

I will do you a favor

'You will do that for me?' asked Dog

'Yes, of course I will do that for you. Maybe it will be better if you get in the cage. That way, it will easier for me to convince your master when he sees you in the cage' said Sang Kancil

'Yes, you are right. I will unlatch the cage and let you out. Then, I will get in' said the dog

'Yes you better do it quick, as I think farmer is coming now. I want to see and talk to him before he sees you in the cage' said Sang Kancil.

The dog quickly unlatched the cage. The moment he got into the cage, Sang Kancil latched it back and quickly ran into the jungle.

Sang Kancil got away again

From the jungle edge, Sang Kancil saw and heard how furious and mad the farmer was. The dog got scolded 'You idiot! Now I have to find something else to eat'

Sang Kancil laughed so loud that he almost got choked. He ran and jumped and sang as he went back into the jungle.

Bedtime Story - Story of Mouse Deer and a Farmer

That's the end of 'Bedtime Story - Story of Mouse Deer and a Farmer- A Children's Story'. Another tale of how Sang Kancil outwitted his foe, again.

Want to read more children's stories on Sang Kancil? Then click on the following links:

Looking for other stories for kids, besides Sang Kancil stories? Then click on this link:

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Comments 6 comments

greatstuff profile image

greatstuff 4 years ago from Malaysia Author

@mizjo, Good to hear from you again. There are so many Malaysian Folk tales and maybe I should start on another! Let me know when you get back here. I am in KL. Thanks for the votes.


mizjo profile image

mizjo 4 years ago from New York City, NY

Chuckle, chuckle. You took me back to my Standard Two reader. I remember Sang Kanchil, the young rascal, and all the animals (and humans) he outwitted.

Reading it made me quite homesick, really.

I am travelling to Malaysia in a few months and will certainly bring back some Malaysian folk tales for my five-year-old grandson who loves reading.

Voted up and beautiful.


greatstuff profile image

greatstuff 4 years ago from Malaysia Author

Hi Alannah Foley, thanks for reading and for commenting. I am glad you enjoyed it. I used the photo to illustrate the story in case you are reading to kids, then the photo will give them a better grasp of the storyline.


Alannah Foley profile image

Alannah Foley 4 years ago

Well, I must say I've never come across any Malaysian stories. I was wondering how Sang Kancil was going to get out of his difficult situation, and it did give me a chuckle in the end. Also enjoyed the photos.


greatstuff profile image

greatstuff 4 years ago from Malaysia Author

Hi MikeSyrSutton, Thanks for dropping by and thanks for voting. Yeah, you are right, Sang Kancil is a pretty cool animal.


MikeSyrSutton profile image

MikeSyrSutton 4 years ago from An uncharted galaxy

That was a great story about a cool animal! Voted up!

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