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Gerald the Giraffe: Other animals keep teasing me about my long neck, what should I do?

This is a problem as old as Time, I’m afraid Gerald.

Many animals seek to tease those that don’t look like them. They may think it’s funny, they may be trying to deflect attention away from something they are self-conscious about (zebras always start teasing other animals the minute someone brings up anything to do with their stripes!), and they may not realise how hurtful it can be to those they tease.

Although some animals might say sticks and stones might break my bones but words will never hurt me, that’s not always very helpful advice when teasing is so persistent and focused on something you have no control over.

I’d suggest you try and turn a negative into a positive – why not show how valuable your neck is? For example, you can see so far, you can give other animals an early warning about predators approaching.

If you save the life of another animal by spotting a predator, they won’t tease you anymore, and they’ll even help stop other animals teasing you.

Whatever you do, don’t respond in-kind. Don’t become a bully because you have been bullied, that is the worst way to respond. Instead, hold your head high, take pride, and save someone’s life so they see how great your long neck is!

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