The black spotted frog
Once there lived a large green bullfrog called “Cowboy”. He had black spots all over his back. Cowboy was so proud of his spots and kept them shiny and bright. They always looked very smart against his green skin. Although he was vain, Cowboy was also very wild. He ran, skipped and jumped all over the pond, hardly ever stopping to have a rest. One of his favourite games was jumping up behind other pond animals and giving them a big fright. Dr Leech – the pond doctor, had told him to relax more and not to be so active but, Cowboy had ignored his advice. In fact, he became wilder.
One day, however, a friend noticed that Cowboy’s spots were fading. Sure enough, when he examined his back in the pond mirror, the spots had changed from shining black to light gray. He ran as fast as he could to Dr Leech and by the time he had arrived, the spots had all disappeared. Cowboy was most upset and felt quite sick. The doctor examined him carefully and explained that the spots could only be painted onto his back. Cowboy was very miserable and sad because he realised that if he had painted spots, they would wash away in the rain and in the water. He had no choice – he either had to sit quietly away from the water or go spotless. Whoever heard of a bullfrog without spots!!
The doctor painted big black spots onto Cowboy’s back and for a while, the naughty frog was happy to be in the shade well away from the water. After a while he began to fret. All his friends were having such fun – playing games in the pond.
Then one day, many weeks later, he could not resist the temptation – he had to have a swim. Without worrying about his painted spots, he jumped into the pond and had a glorious swim. Whilst he was in the water, he suddenly remembered his spots. He jumped out of the pond and raced back as quickly as he could, to see the damage. Cowboy looked into the mirror and, to his surprise, although the paint had faded away, his own big black spots had grown again. The doctor had deliberately put washable paint on his back to make him rest and keep him out of the water.
“Hurrah”, he croaked, “I’m normal again, but now I will not be so wild, I will behave better as I do not want to lose my spots again., and one happy frog jumped into the cool pond!
Barbara Louise Gillman