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A Guinea-pig and his tail

Updated on July 22, 2011
Turn round and I will cut your tail off
Turn round and I will cut your tail off

Once upon a time, a guinea-pig lived in a nice little hutch in Billy-boy’s garden. Billy-boy loved him, and always took his friends down to see him.

But the guinea-pig used to be frightened when he sometimes heard Billy-Boy say: “Hold him up by his tail, and see what happens!”

Though Billy-Boy and his friends never hold him up by his tail, the guinea-pig was so frightened that he decided to go and have his tail cut off, for then no one could ever hold him up by it. He tried to see if he had a big one, but he was so fat that he couldn’t see round himself.

That night the little guinea-pig slipped out of his hutch, and ran off. First he met Prickles the Hedgehog, who was snuffing about in a ditch. He asked the Hedgehog to cut his tail off. But Prickles stared at him, shook his head and laughed. He recommended the guinea-pig to go and ask Frisky the Squirrel for help, because the Squirrel’s got fine one himself, and perhaps he might know what could do for it.

Then the guinea-pig ran off to Frisky the Squirrel, who was curled up asleep in a tree. But Frisky hadn’t got any scissors; he advised the guinea-pig to go to Hush-Hush the Owl, for Owl has a very sharp beak.

So the guinea-pig left Frisky for Hush-Hush the Owl, who was watching for mice by the buttercup field. But Owl’s sharp beak couldn’t help either. He told the guinea-pig to ask Chack the Jackdaw, for he has a pair of scissors in his nest that he stole from a lady’s garden.

He thanked Owl and ran off again. It was not long before he came to the old barn where Chack had his big nest. He stuffed it into a hole in the roof, and the Guinea-pig had to run up the rafters to get to it. He asked Chack to cut his tail off. Chack cawed merrily and took a pair of scissors from his nest and held them in his right foot. He asked the Guinea-pig to turn around, then snip-snip went his scissors.

The guinea-pig didn’t feel hurt, and couldn’t see cut-off tail. Much to his astonishment, Chack the Jackdaw told him that no guinea-pigs have tails. The guinea-pig crept back into his hutch, and never be afraid again when Billy-Boy tells his friends to hold him up by his tails.

[Fact: Guinea pigs do have tails. You can't see them. Their "tail" is just a tail vertebrate. All the same, it's still a tail.]


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