high + tail; refers to the behavior of fleeing animals, such as deer, that raise their tail when running away.
hightail (third-person singular simple present hightails, present participle hightailing, simple past and past participle hightailed); usually with it; see hightail it.
- (usually transitive) To move at full speed, especially in retreat.
- He hightailed it toward town.
- I want you to hightail your butt out of there before they come back.
- As soon as she arrived, I hightailed out of there.