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land dog had been accidentally killed by the passage of a railway wagon over him, the other languished and evidently lamented for a long time.
The benevolence of dogs generally, but of the Newfoundland variety in particular, has often excited marks of high admiration. A writer on this subject observes that he once saw a water-spaniel, unbidden, plunge into the current of a roaring sluice to save a small cur, maliciously thrown in. The same motive seemed to animate a Pomeranian dog, belonging to a Dutch vessel. This creature sprang overboard, caught a child up, and swam on shore with it, before any person had discovered the accident. A Yorkshire newspaper (November 1843) mentions a case not less humane and sagacious. A child, playing on Roach's Wharf with a Newfoundland dog belonging to his father, accidentally fell into the water. The dog immediately sprang after the child, who was only six years old, and seizing the waist of his little frock, brought him into the dock, where there was a stage, and by which the child held on, but was unable to get on the top. The dog, seeing it was unable to pull the little fellow out of the water, ran up to a yard adjoining, where a girl of nine years of age was hanging out clothes. He seized the girl by the frock, and notwithstanding her exertions to get away, he succeeded in dragging her to the spot where the child was still hanging by the hands to the stage. On the girl's taking hold of the child, the dog assisted her in rescuing the little fellow from his perilous situation ; and after licking the face of the infant it had thus saved, it took a leap off the stage, and swam round to the end of the wharf, and immediately after returned with the child's hat in his mouth.
Newfoundland dogs have frequently been of service in the case of shipwreck. Youatt, in his Humanity of Brutes, relates the following case : A vessel was driven on beach of Lydd, in Kent. The surf was rolling furiously-eight poor fellows were crying for help, but not a boat could be got off to their assistance. At length a gentleman came on the beach, accompanied by his Newfoundland dog. He directed the attention of the animal to the vessel, and put a short stick into his mouth. The intelligent and courageous fellow at once understood his meaning, sprang into the sea, and fought his way through the waves. He could not, however, get close enough to the vessel to deliver that with which he was charged ; but the crew joyfully made fast a rope to another piece of wood, and threw it towards him. He saw the whole business in an instant-he dropped his own piece, and immediately seized that which had been cast to him; and then, with a degree of strength and determination almost incredible, he dragged it through the surf, and delivered it to his master. A line of communication was thus formed, and every man on board was rescued from a watery grave.
The most remarkable anecdote of this class, however, is that regarding a Swiss chamois-hunter's dog. This animal being on the glaciers with an English gentleman and his master, observed the first approaching one of those awful crevices in the ice to look down into it. He began to slide towards the edge; his guide, with a view to save him, caught his coat, and both slid onward, till the dog seized his master's clothes, and arrested them both from inevitable death. The gentleman left the dog a pension for life.
The presentiment of approaching danger, of which we have given the above example, evinces a higher degree of reasoning power than that shewn in ordinary acts of sagacity or personal attachment. In the notice given by Captain Fitzroy of the earthquake at Galcahuasco, on the 20th of February 1835, it is mentioned that all the dogs had left the town before the great shock which ruined the buildings was felt. Very extraordinary stories have been told of dogs discovering and circumventing plans to injure the persons of their masters, in which it is difficult to place implicit credit. We give one of the most marvellous of these anecdotes, as it is usually related.
Sir H. Lee, of Ditchley, in Oxfordshire, ancestor of the late Earls of Lichfield, had a mastiff which guarded the house and yard, but had never met with any particular attention from his master. In short, he was not a favourite dog, and was retained for his utility only, and not from any partial regard.
One night, as Sir Harry was retiring to his chamber, attended by his favourite valet, an Italian, the mastiff silently followed them up stairs, which he had never been known to do before, and, to his master's astonishment, presented himself in the bedroom. Being deemed an intruder, he was instantly ordered to be turned out, which being complied with, the poor animal began scratching violently at the door, and howling loudly for admission. The servant was sent to drive him away. Discouragement, however, could not check his intended labour of love; he returned again, and was more importunate to be let in than before. Sir Harry, weary of opposition, though surprised beyond measure at the dog's apparent fondness for the society of a master who had never shewn him the least kindness, and wishing to retire to rest, bade the servant open the door, that they might see what he wanted to do. This done, the mastiff, with a wag of the tail, and a look of affection at his lord, deliberately walked up, and crawling under the bed, laid himself down, as if desirous to take up his night's lodging there.
To save further trouble, and not from any partiality for his company, this indulgence was allowed. The valet withdrew, and all was still. About the solemn hour of midnight, the chamber door opened, and a person was heard stepping across the room. Sir Harry started from sleep; the dog sprung from his covert, and seizing the unwelcome disturber, fixed him to the spot. All was dark : Sir Harry rang his bell'in great trepidation, in order to
procure a light. The person who was pinned to the floor by the courageous mastiff roared for assistance. It was found to be the favourite valet, who little expected such a reception. He endeavoured to apologise for his intrusion, and to make the reasons which induced him to take this step appear plausible ; but the importunity of the dog, the time, the place, the manner of the valet, raised suspicions in Sir Harry's mind, and he determined to refer the investigation of the business to a magistrate.
The perfidious Italian, alternately terrified by the dread of punishment, and soothed by the hope of pardon, at length confessed that it was his intention to murder his master, and then rob the house. This diabolical design was frustrated solely by the unaccountable sagacity of the dog, and his devoted attachment to his master. A full-length picture of Sir Harry, with the mastiff by his side, and the words, ‘More faithful than favoured,' is still preserved among the family pictures.
Presentiments of approaching danger, such as those now related, are to be traced only to the animal's close observation and watchful jealousy of disposition. Looks, signs, and movements are noticed by him which escape an ordinary observer. The idea that dogs have presentiments of death, and howl on such occasions, is a superstition now all but vanished.
ECCENTRICITIES IN DOGS. Although attachment to a master is the general characteristic of the dog, there are exceptions to this rule. The spotted carriage-dog seems regardless of man, and attaches himself exclusively to horses; he is happy only in the stable, or when running beside or near the heels of the horses in his master's carriage. Small domesticated dogs often shew a regard for the cats which have been their fireside companions. The clever author of Tutti Frutti relates the following instance of this kind of attachment : 'I have a poodle which I would make tutor to my son, if I had one. I sometimes use him towards my own education. Will not the following trait of his character amuse you? He conceived a strange fondness, an absolute passion, for a young kitten, which he carried about in his mouth for hours when he went out to walk; and whenever he came to a resting-place, he set her down with the greatest care and tenderness, and began to play with her. When he was fed, she always took the nicest pieces away from him, without his ever making the slightest opposition. The kitten died, and was buried in the garden. My poor poodle shewed the deepest grief, would not touch food, and howled mournfully the whole night long. What was my astonishment when, the next morning, he appeared carrying the kitten in his mouth! He had scratched her out of the ground, and it was only by force that we could take her from him.'
Instances of dogs forming no particular attachment, and seeking
amusement entirely on their own account, are more rare. A French author has related an amusing instance of canine independence. He states that, at the beginning of the Revolution, there was a dog in Paris known by the name of Parade, because he always attended regularly the military parades at the Tuileries. A taste for music was probably the cause of this fancy. He always stood by, and marched with the band ; and at night went to the Opera, Comédie Italienne, or Théâtre Feydau ; dined with any musician who expressed, by a word or gesture, that his company was asked ; yet always withdrew from attempts to be made the property of any individual.
A few years ago, the public were amused with an account given in the newspapers of a dog which possessed the strange fancy of attending all the fires that occurred in the metropolis. The discovery of this predilection was made by a gentleman residing a few miles from town, who was called up in the middle of the night by the intelligence that the premises adjoining his house of business were on fire. "The removal of my books and papers,' said he, in telling the story, of course claimed my attention; yet, notwithstanding this, and the bustle which prevailed, my eye every now and then rested on a dog, which, during the hottest progress of the conflagration, I could not help noticing running about, and apparently taking a deep interest in what was going on, contriving to keep himself out of everybody's way, and yet always present amidst the thickest of the stir. When the fire was got under, and I had leisure to look about me, I again observed the dog, which, with the firemen, appeared to be resting from the fatigues of duty, and was led to make some inquiries respecting him. “ Is this your dog, my friend ?" said I to a fireman. No, sir," answered he; "it does not belong to me, or to any one in particular. We call him the firemen's dog.”—“ The firemen's dog !" I replied. “Why so ? Has he no master ?” “No, sir," rejoined the fireman ; "he calls none of us master, though we are all of us willing enough to give him a night's lodging and a pennyworth of meat. But he won't stay long with any of us; his delight is to be at all the fires in London ; and, far or near, we generally find him on the road as we are going along, and sometimes, if it is out of town, we give him a lift. I don't think there has been a fire for these two or three years past which he has not been at."
• The communication was so extraordinary, that I found it difficult to believe the story, until it was confirmed by the concurrent testimony of several other firemen. None of them, however, was able to give any account of the early habits of the dog, or to offer any explanation of the circumstances which led to this singular propensity.
Some time afterwards, I was again called up in the night to a fire in the village in which I resided (Camberwell, in Surrey), and, to my surprise, here I again met with the "firemen's dog," still alive and well, pursuing, with the same apparent interest and satisfaction, the exhibi
tion of that which seldom fails to bring with it disaster and misfortune, oftentimes loss of life and ruin. Still
, he called no man master, disdained to receive bed or board from the same hand more than a night or two at a time, nor could the firemen trace out his resting-place.
Such was the account of this interesting animal as it appeared in the newspapers, to which were shortly afterwards appended several circumstances communicated by a fireman at one of the policeoffices. A magistrate having asked him whether it was a fact that the dog was present at most of the fires that occurred in the metropolis, the fireman replied that he never knew “Tyke, as he was called, to be absent from a fire upon any occasion that he [the fireman) attended himself. The magistrate said the dog must have an extraordinary predilection for fires. He then asked what length of time he had been known to possess that propensity. The fireman replied that he knew Tyke for the last nine years; and although he was getting old, yet the moment the engines were about, Tyke was to be seen as active as ever, running off in the direction of the fire. The magistrate inquired whether the dog lived with any particular fireman. The fireman replied that Tyke liked one fireman as well as another; he had no particular favourites, but passed his time amongst them, sometimes going to the house of one, and then to another, and off to a third when he was tired. Day or night, it was all the same to him; if a fire broke out, there he was in the midst of the bustle, running from one engine to another, anxiously looking after the firemen; and, although pressed upon by crowds, yet, from his dexterity, he always escaped accidents, only now and then getting a ducking from the engines, which he rather liked than otherwise. The magistrate said that Tyke was a most extraordinary animal ; and having expressed a wish to see him, he was shortly after exhibited at the office, and some other peculiarities respecting him were related. There was nothing at all particular in the appearance of the dog; he was a rough-looking small animal, of the terrier breed, and seemed to be in excellent condition, no doubt from the care taken of him by the firemen belonging to the different companies. There was some difficulty experienced in bringing him to the office, as he did not much relish going any distance from where the firemen are usually to be found, except in cases of attending with them at a conflagration, and then distance was of no consequence. It was found necessary to use stratagem for the purpose. A fireman commenced running : Tyke, accustomed to follow upon such occasions, set out after him ; but this person having slackened his pace on the way, the sagacious animal, knowing there was no fire, turned back, and it was necessary to carry him to the office.
A number of interesting anecdotes will be found in Jesse's work, Anecdotes of Dogs. London : Henry G. Bohn.