What does "tab him" mean in the animated TV series Dastardly and Muttley?

Mutley, you snickering, floppy eared hound.
When courage is needed, you're never around.
Those medals you wear on your moth-eaten chest
Should be there for bungling at which you are best.

So, stop that pigeon
Stop that pigeon
Stop that pigeon
Stop that pigeon
Stop that pigeon
Stop that pigeon
Stop that pigeon

Nab him
Jab him
Tab him
Grab him
Stop that pigeon now.

Source: Soundtrack Artists - Dastardly & Mutley In Their Flying Machine Lyrics | MetroLyrics

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-- My answer that I have deleted --

I think I knew the answer! Even though I am not given to posting answers, I am forced to post one after taking sometime to prepare the question.

It sounds as if Dastardly doesn't mind that pigeon gets hit and stuck to a wall for example.

From Oxford Dictionaries Site

verb (tabs, tabbing, tabbed) [with object]

Mark or identify with a projecting piece of material:

he opened the book at a page tabbed by a cloth bookmark

His copy of The Diviners was meticulously tabbed and flagged and he had a thick file of all of the emails that the two men had exchanged with each other before this evening.

  • Ehh...maybe. "Tabbed" is really only used for paper documents. The concept is that a book has lots of pages, the edges of which line up perfectly, and a little tab sticks out so the page it marks can easily be found. Do they want to mark the pigeon so it can be easily found in the future? Even if it were the case, they would "tag" it, not "tab" it. Neither tab nor tab really makes sense in this context. Here they clearly want to capture the pigeon using any means possible. I think word was chosen because it rhymes. Cartoons don't always worry too much about meaning. – Adam Dec 18 '14 at 23:52
  • Whoops - that should read: Neither tab nor tag really makes sense in this context. – Adam Dec 19 '14 at 0:00
  • Have you given deeper thoughts to this example from the definition above Adam "he opened the book at a page tabbed by a cloth bookmark"? Wouldn't they capture the pigeon in a way similar to that cloth between the two ends of the book? – learner Dec 19 '14 at 0:07
  • 1
    Maybe it's this tab: "to choose someone for a particular job, responsibility, or honor; Even from his early days, he was tabbed as a future leader." – Damkerng T. Dec 19 '14 at 0:11
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    I guess a word was chosen that rhymes with nab, jab, grab. I think tab could very well mean 'to single out' or to identify' the pigeon. On the other hand, does it matter what it means? I mean if the word were a nonsense word that rhymed, such as dlab, wouldn't that be okay for a kids book or for some goofy dastard character to say? – user6951 Dec 19 '14 at 0:20

It sounds to me like the writer of the song chose a random word that rhymed and might vaguely fit in the situation (you could imagine that it means something like 'mark' or 'tag'). However, it's not meant to have any particular or specific meaning.

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