Growing a human tail?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by Athelwulf, May 3, 2006.


Would you grow a tail if you could have one?

  1. Yes, tails are awesome.

    35 vote(s)
  2. No, I'm quite happy being tail-less.

    32 vote(s)
  1. Mawom Teh Fox Saiyan Registered Member

    i REALLY want a fox tail, then i could REALLY be, Malcolm The Fox Saiyan
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  3. Mawom Teh Fox Saiyan Registered Member

    Is it dangerous?

    is this all dangerous (once again)
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  5. John99 Banned Banned

    It is never going to happen. In any case, it would be much more beneficial to develop 12 fingers, for example.
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  7. gameguy95 Registered Member

    thanks for ruining all my dreams

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  8. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    • Balance. Aerialists use a pole to adjust their center of gravity when they're walking on a high wire. If you had a tail you could be the next Flying Wallenda.
    • Cantilevering. Dinosaurs with long necks had long tails. I don't know if this has been proven untrue since I learned it, but I was taught that when a brontosaurus had his head down his tail was pointing up and vice versa. One long connected series of muscles, otherwise the leverage would be impossible to generate.
    • Grabbing. Opossums hang by their tails, monkeys use theirs as a fifth hand. Snakes are 100% tail and they can go practically anywhere.
    You mean "humans and the other apes." We are all hominids, and our closest relatives are the two species of chimpanzee, the bonobo and the "true" chimpanzee.

    Apes are not as arboreal as monkeys. They spend less time in the trees so they just don't need the extra hardware.

    One primatologist (Tetsuro Matsuzawa) insists that anatomically the key difference between a human and a chimpanzee is that we can lie comfortably on our backs. The other apes can't do it without one arm or leg being off the ground. If we had a tail we couldn't do that. Notice how few animals actually can.

    This ability is what made it possible to evolve face-to-face as our standard copulation posture. This (AFAIK) makes us unique among all the warm-blooded animals, creating a sense of intimacy that they can't achieve. I wouldn't be surprised if some female animals can't be quite sure they know exactly who's back there!

    I can't resist asking whether you guys really want a whole tail, or just a piece.

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  9. CatMonkeyTurtleCool Registered Member

    ....i'm gonna re-think if i want a tail
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2010
  10. Princess Vegeta Registered Member


    I've always wanted a tail like the saiyans do in DBZ, I want one because it would help make me diffrent. but i dont want to turn into Oozaru (Giant ape)on a full moon. i figured that if you dont want your tail to hang down you could wrap it around your waist like they did in DBZ or if your wearing jeans you could put your tail through your jeans like a belt perhaps. in DBZ it was higher up on on the tailbone around the waist. and they kept it there or hanging. for me when i go to sleep i sleep on my stomach or side so it doesnt matter to me anyway.:shrug: but i really wish for a tail. Thats how i ended up here:idea:
  11. protoborg Registered Member

    There are a number of points regarding this idea. They can be grouped as issues preventing gaining a tail, ways to get a tail, problems with each method of getting a tail, and implications of having a tail.

    Roadblocks to Getting a Tail
    1) Genetically, humans lack the genes that code for a tail at the base of the spine.
    2) Humans have no experience using a tail.
    3) Humans lack the ability to function with a tail.
    4) Humans lack the control to handle a tail.

    Ways to Get a Tail
    1) Surgically implanting a tail at the base of the spine (grafted on)
    2) using a prosthetic tail at the base of the spine (prostheses have advanced significantly)
    3) injecting stem cells "programmed" to become a tail
    4) wear a fake tail (fairly popular with furries)

    Problems with Each Method of Getting a Tail
    1) This does not, necessarily, allow for a functioning tail.
    2) Prosthetic limbs do require a learning period. They also do not always fit properly. Some can even become unreliable over time.
    3) Stem cell research is far from complete. It is also a very controversial field of bio-science.
    4) This method does not really give you a tail. Any furry can tell you it is superficial at best. The point of having a tail for those of us who really want one is to actually have a tail, not merely strap one on.

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    Implications of Having a Tail
    1) you would get odd looks from people
    2) it might be difficult to sleep as you normally would
    3) as tails have fur, it would require additional cleaning on par with very long hair
    4) the tail could help you balance better
    5) Furries would feel closer to their animal side.

    All that aside, I think it would be awesome to have a real tail.
  12. joejoe8151 Registered Member

    Well it looks as though we most likely have everything we need to have such a thing done...the question is, where do we start? Who do we go to for such an operation?
  13. Nardicko Registered Senior Member

    What would happen if a human took Wolf Hormones. I can't find any research on it. thought id ask. I really would like to see what wolf hormones have to offer or what aspects it would give a human.
  14. Unconcept Registered Senior Member

    Tail? Why not wings?
  15. bluespring101 Registered Member

    I have an idea on how, but I believe it would involve surgery. Okay, well, you know how like, if someone lost their arm, they could get a new robotic one? I thought that if instead of creating a leg or arm or something, you could create a robotic tail. The fur, because just having a robotic limb above your butt would look weird, cover the limb in rubber then use like, that stuff they use for barbies hair to create a fur pattern. Everyone is making this quite complicated and hasn't considered this. I don't know if it would work, but I think it's worth a shot!
  16. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Humans are sometimes born with tails. We have the genes for it and when so equipped we can move them.

    Hum Pathol. 1984 May;15(5):449-53.
    Human tails and pseudotails.
    Dao AH, Netsky MG.

    A case of a tail in a 2-week-old infant is reported, and findings from a review of 33 previously reported cases of true tails and pseudotails are summarized. The true, or persistent, vestigial tail of humans arises from the most distal remnant of the embryonic tail. It contains adipose and connective tissue, central bundles of striated muscle, blood vessels, and nerves and is covered by skin. Bone, cartilage, notochord, and spinal cord are lacking. The true tail arises by retention of structures found normally in fetal development. It may be as long as 13 cm, can move and contract, and occurs twice as often in males as in females. A true tail is easily removed surgically, without residual effects. It is rarely familial. Pseudotails are varied lesions having in common a lumbosacral protrusion and a superficial resemblance to persistent vestigial tails. The most frequent cause of a pseudotail in a series of ten cases obtained from the literature was an anomalous prolongation of the coccygeal vertebrae.
  17. bluespring101 Registered Member

    Wolf!!? It should be FOX!!! But I guess if you like stuff like that…

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  18. gabriel thorne Registered Member

    Wouldnt it be possible to trick the mind into thinking it had a tail and lost it, so when the regenerative medicine comes along, it would heal the tail, making a whole new tail with the genetic code and understanding how to use it?
  19. AlexG Like nailing Jello to a tree Valued Senior Member

    But then we would have to redesign all our chairs and toilets.
  20. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Roman: In your Post # 4 you expressed a desire for functional wings. It reminds me of a Scifi story about a woman in a very advanced culture who wanted a flying horse ala the Greek myth about Pegasus.

    The genetic engineer asked
    There ensued an argument because the woman did not understand that a horse which could fly would not look much like the creature in Greek mythology.

    Similarly, if you wanted functional wings, you would not look much like a normal human being.

    You would need monster sized pectoral muscles & perhaps other adjustments to your body, like thinner thighs to reduce body weight, & a wider torso to accommodate the huge pectoral muscles. If you wanted functional arms as well as functional wings, there would be some design problems relating to two sets of pectoral-like muscles.

    BTW: It is interesting to note that there are no vertebrates with 6 limbs.

    An additional set of functional limbs requires quite a bit of extra brain & extra nervous system components for little, if any, extra capabilities.

    Evolution is not likely to result in a creature like the mythical centaur anywhere in the universe. Note that quadrupeds originated as having 4 legs until the evolution of primates.

    A 6-legged creature would not be able to run faster than a 4-legged creature & would require extra energy intake & nervous system components.

    Note that insects with more than 4 legs do not have much independent control of their limbs like vertebrate capabilities.

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