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mad animal, than he had suffered a calamity by his loss. This opiate to his wounded spirit, however, was ineffectual: 'I am most unfortunate,' said he to himself; “I had almost rather have lost my money than my dog.' Saying this, he stretched out his hand to grasp his treasure. It was missing ; no bag was to be found. In an instant, he opened his eyes to his rashness and folly. "Wretch that I am! I alone am to blame ! I could not comprehend the admonition which my innocent and most faithful friend gave me, and I have sacrificed him for his zeal. He only wished to inform me of my mistake, and he has paid for his fidelity with his life.'
Instantly he turned his horse, and went off at full gallop to the place where he had stopped. He saw with half-averted eyes the scene where the tragedy was acted; he perceived the traces of blood as he proceeded; he was oppressed and distracted ; but in vain did he look for his dog-he was not to be seen on the road. At last he arrived at the spot where he had alighted. But what were his sensations! His heart was ready to bleed; he execrated himself in the madness of despair. The poor dog, unable to follow his dear but cruel master, had determined to consecrate his last moments to his service. He had crawled, all bloody as he was, to the forgotten bag, and in the agonies of death, he lay watching beside it. When
he saw his master, he still testified his joy by the wagging of his tail. He could do no more ; he tried to rise, but his strength was gone. The vital tide was ebbing fast; even the caresses of his master could not prolong his fate for a few moments. He stretched out his tongue to lick the hand that was now fondling him in the agonies of regret, as if to seal forgiveness of the deed that had deprived him of life. He then cast a look of kindness on his master, and closed his eyes in death.
A less tragical instance of this kind of fidelity occurred some years ago in England. A gentleman of Suffolk, on an excursion with a friend, was attended by a Newfoundland dog, which soon became the subject of conversation. The master, after a warm eulogium upon the perfections of his canine favourite, assured his companion that he would, upon receiving the order, return and fetch any article he should leave behind, from any distance. To confirm this assertion, a marked shilling was put under a large square stone by the side of the road—being first shewn to the dog. The gentlemen then rode for three miles, when the dog received his signal from the master to return for the shilling he had seen put under the stone. The dog turned back; the gentleman rode on and reached home ; but, to their surprise and disappointment, the hitherto faithful messenger did not return during the day. It afterwards appeared that he had gone to the place where the shilling was deposited, but the stone being too large for his strength to remove, he had stayed howling at the place, till two horsemen riding by, and attracted by his seeming distress, stopped to look at him, when one of them alighting, removed the stone, and seeing the shilling, put it into his pocket, not at the time conceiving it to be the object of the dog's search. The dog followed their horses for twenty miles, remained undisturbed in the room where they supped, followed the chambermaid into the bedchamber, and secreted himself under one of the beds. The possessor of the shilling hung his trousers upon a nail by the bedside ; but when the travellers were both asleep, the dog took them in his mouth, and leaping out of the window, which was left open on account of the sultry heat, reached the house of his master at four o'clock in the morning with the prize he had made free with, in the pocket of which were found a watch and money, that were returned upon being advertised, when the whole mystery was mutually unravelled to the admiration of all the parties.
ANECDOTES OF SHEPHERDS' DOGS.
One of the most striking instances which we have heard of the sagacity and personal attachment in the shepherd's dog, occurred nearly a century ago among the Grampian Mountains. In one of his excursions to his distant flocks in these high pasturages, a shepherd happened to carry along with him one of his children, an infant about three years old. After traversing his pasture for some time, attended by his dog, the shepherd found himself under the necessity of ascending a summit at some distance to have a more extensive view of his range. As the ascent was too fatiguing for the child, he left him on a small plain at the bottom, with strict injunctions not to stir from it till his return. Scarcely, however, had he gained the summit, when the horizon was suddenly darkened by one of those impenetrable mists which frequently descend so rapidly amidst these mountains, as, in the space of a few minutes, almost to turn day into night. The anxious father instantly hastened back to find his child ; but, owing to the unusual darkness, and his own trepidation, he unfortunately missed his way in the descent. After a fruitless search of many hours amongst the dangerous morasses and cataracts with which these mountains abound, he was at length overtaken by night. Still wandering on without knowing whither, he at length came to the verge of the mist, and, by the light of the moon, discovered that he had reached the bottom of the valley, and was within a short distance of his cottage. To renew the search that night was equally fruitless and dangerous. He was therefore obliged to return to his cottage, having lost both his child and his dog, which had attended him faithfully
for years. Next morning, by daybreak, the 'shepherd, accompanied by a band of his neighbours, set out in search of his child; but, after a day spent in fruitless fatigue, he was at last compelled, by the
approach of night, to descend from the mountain. On returning to his cottage, he found that the dog which he had lost the day before had been home, and, on receiving a piece of cake, had instantly gone off again. For several successive days the shepherd renewed the search for his child ; and still, on returning at evening disappointed to his cottage, he found that the dog had been home, and on receiving his usual allowance of cake, had instantly disappeared. Struck with this singular circumstance, he remained at home one day ; and when the dog as usual departed with his piece of cake, he resolved to follow him, and find out the cause of his strange procedure. The dog led the way to a cataract at some distance from the spot where the shepherd had left his child. The banks of the cataract, almost joined at the top, yet separated by an abyss of immense depth, presented that appearance which so often astonishes and appals the travellers who frequent the Grampian Mountains, and indicates that these stupendous chasms were not the silent work of time, but the sudden effect of some violent convulsion of the earth. Down one of these rugged and almost perpendicular descents, the dog began without hesitation to make his way, and at last disappeared into a cave, the mouth of which was almost upon a level with the torrent. The shepherd with difficulty followed ; but on entering the cave, what were his emotions when he beheld his infant eating with much satisfaction the cake which the dog had just brought him, while the faithful animal stood by, eyeing his young charge with the utmost complacence!
From the situation in which the child was found, it appears that he had wandered to the brink of the precipice, and then either fallen or scrambled down till he reached the cave, which the dread of the torrent had afterwards prevented him from quitting. The dog, by means of his scent, had traced him to the spot; and afterwards prevented him from starving, by giving up to him his own daily allowance. He appears never to have quitted the child by night or day, except when it was necessary to go for his food, and then he was always seen running at full speed to and from the cottage.
The following instance of watchful care on the part of a farmer's dog, is related in the Sportsman's Cabinet as being well authenticated :
Mr Henry Hawkes, a farmer residing at Halling, in Kent, was late one evening at Maidstone market. On returning at night with his dog, which was usually at his heels, he again stopped at Aylesford, and, as is too frequently the case upon such occasions, he drank immoderately, and left the place in a state of intoxication. Having passed the village of Newheed in safety, he took his way over Snodland Brook, in the best season of the year a very dangerous road for a drunken man. The whole face of the country was covered with a deep snow, and the frost intense. He had, however, proceeded in safety tiff he came to the Willow Walk, within half a mile
of the church, when by a sudden stagger he quitted the path, and passed over a ditch on his right hand. Not apprehensive he was going astray, he took towards the river ; but having a high bank to mount, and being nearly exhausted with wandering and the effect of the liquor, he was most fortunately prevented from rising the mound, or he certainly must have precipitated himself (as it was near high-water) into the Medway. At this moment, completely overcome, he fell among the snow, in one of the coldest nights ever known, turning upon his back. He was soon overpowered with either sleep or cold, when his faithful dependent, which had closely attended to every step, scratched away the snow, so as to throw up a sort of protecting wall around his helpless master; then mounting upon the exposed body, rolled himself round and lay upon his master's bosom, for which his shaggy coat proved a most seasonable covering and eventual protection during the dreadful severity of the night, the snow falling all the time. The following morning, a person who was out with his gun, in expectation of falling in with some sort of wild-fowl, perceiving an appearance rather uncommon, ventured to approach the spot; upon his coming up, the dog got off the body, and after repeatedly shaking himself, to get disentangled from the accumulated snow, encouraged the sportsman, by actions of the most significant nature, to come near the side of his master. Upon wiping away the icy incrustation from the face, the countenance was immediately recollected; but the frame appearing lifeless, assistance was procured to convey it to the first house upon the skirts of the village, when a pulsation being observed, every possible means was instantly adopted to promote his recovery. In the course of a short time the farmer was sufficiently restored to relate his own story as already recited ; and in gratitude for his extraordinary escape, ordered a silver collar to be made for his friendly protector, as a perpetual remembrancer of the transaction. A gentleman of the faculty in the neighbourhood hearing of the circumstance, and finding it so well authenticated, immediately made him an offer of ten guineas for the dog, which the grateful farmer refused, exultingly adding, 'that as long as he had a bone to his meat, or a crust to his bread, he would divide it with the faithful friend who had preserved his life;' and this he did in a perfect conviction that the warmth of the dog, in covering the most vital part, had continued the circulation, and prevented a total stagnation of the blood by the frigidity of the elements.'
The patience, the ingenuity, and fidelity of the shepherd's dog in assisting his master in his arduous profession, command our highest esteem ; while his knowledge of what is desired of him, his tact in understanding the slightest signal, his sagacity in acting in cases of emergence on his own responsibility, make him the paragon of the brute creation. James Hogg, who possessed the best opportunities of studying the character of the shepherd's dog, mentions that he at
one time had a dog called Sirrah, an animal of a sullen disposition, and by no means favourable appearance, which was an extraordinary adept in managing a flock. One of his exploits was as follows: - About seven hundred lambs, which were once under his care at weaning-time, broke up at midnight, and scampered off in three divisions across the hills, in spite of all that the Shepherd and an assistant lad could do to keep them together. “Sirrah,” cried the Shepherd in great affliction, “ my man, they're a' awa?." The night was so dark that he did not see Sirrah ; but the faithful animal had heard his master's words--words such as of all others were sure to set him most on the alert ; and without more ado, he silently set off in quest of the recreant flock. Meanwhile the Shepherd and his companion did not fail to do all that was in their own power to recover their lost charge-they spent the whole night in scouring the hills for miles around; but of neither the lambs nor Sirrah could they obtain the slightest trace. " It was the most extraordinary circumstance," says the Shepherd,“ that had ever occurred in the annals of the pastoral life. We had nothing for it (day having dawned) but to return to our master, and inform him that we had lost his whole flock of lambs, and knew not what was become of one of them. On our way home, however, we discovered a body of lambs at the bottom of a deep ravine, called the Flesh Cleuch, and the indefatigable Şirrah standing in front of them, looking all around for some relief, but still standing true to his charge. The sun was then up; and when we first came in view of them, we concluded that it was one of the divisions of the lambs which Sirrah had been unable to manage, until he came to that commanding situation. But what was our astonishment when we discovered by degrees that not one lamb of the whole flock was wanting! How he had got all the divisions collected in the dark, is beyond my comprehension. The charge was left entirely to himself from midnight until the rising of the sun ; and if all the shepherds in the Forest had been there to have assisted him, they could not have effected it with greater propriety. All that I can further say is, that I never felt so grateful to any creature below the sun, as I did to my honest Sirrah that morning."
In the execution of such duties, the shepherd's dog, as may be supposed, does not weigh moral considerations. His purpose is to serve his master, whether right or wrong, though, when employed on guilty objects, he is probably not ignorant that his work is of a clandestine nature, which it would not be faithful to disclose. Among the narratives which still entertain the fireside circle in Tweeddale, one of the most remarkable refers to an extraordinary case of sheep-stealing, in which a shepherd's dog was a subordinate though most active agent. The case occurred in the year 1772.
A young farmer at Ormiston, near Innerleithen, whose circumstances were supposed to be good, and who was connected with