Man's Best Friend
I sometimes wonder if dogs were placed on Earth to remind Man of what unconditional love is. Here is a story
out of China recently about a dog who is refusing to leave the grave of his recently-deceased master, forgoing food for a week until local villagers began trekking to the cemetery to feed him. This is reminiscent of other tales of dogs grieving their deceased owners; one picture in particular has been making the rounds on Facebook lately of a dog on the floor beside the coffin
of a slain U.S. soldier. The devotion of these special animals is something to marvel at. Throughout most of my childhood I had a fantastic companion, a mix between an Australian shepherd and a border collie, who would sleep at the foot of my bed almost every night while I was growing up. He was so protective of me that even if my own parents moved too quickly towards me or lingered with a hug or hand on my shoulder for too long, the dog would begin to make his displeasure known. A wonderful creature that I miss a great deal. Childhood without a dog would have had a dark hole in it. In light of the Chinese story, it is worth mentioning Senator George Graham Vest's Eulogy of the Dog for recollection:
Gentlemen of the jury: A man's dog stands by him in prosperity and in poverty, in health and in sickness. He will sleep on the cold ground, where the wintry winds blow and the snow drives fiercely, if only he may be near his master's side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer, he will lick the wounds and sores that come in encounters with the roughness of the world. He guards the sleep of his pauper master as if he were a prince...If fortune drives the master forth an outcast in the world, friendless and homeless, the faithful dog asks no higher privilege than that of accompanying him to guard against danger, to fight against enemies, and when the last scene of all comes, and death takes the master in its embrace and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by his graveside will the noble dog be found, his head between his paws, his eyes sad but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even to death.
Thank God for dogs.
1:54 PM / November 23, 2011