They are harmless and inoffensive creatures, offering no resistance when caught; their principal means of escape being the extraordinary rapidity with which they burrow in the ground, and the tenacity with which they retain their hold in their subterranean retreats.
Among the inoffensive species are counted the graceful green " tree snake," which pursues frogs, birds and lizards to the topmost branches of the forest; also several species of pythons, the commonest of which is known as the carpet snake.
They style themselves " truly spiritual Christians," and in their rejection of the sacraments, their indifference to outward forms, and their insistence on the spiritual interpretation of the Bible (" the letter killeth "), they are closely akin to the Quakers, whom they resemble also in their inoffensive mode of life and the practice of mutual help.
The guinea-pig is a singularly inoffensive and defenceless creature, of a restless disposition, and wanting in that intelligence which usually characterizes domestic pets, although said to show some discrimination.
They are solitary, nocturnal, shy and inoffensive, chiefly frequenting the depths of shady forests and the neighbourhood of water, to which they frequently resort for the purpose of bathing, and in which they often take refuge when pursued.