Tuesday, August 12, 2008
The Newfoundland and the Little Dog
'Drew and I read a story last night (actually, I read it and he drooled on it so it's a good thing I have a photographic memory) entitled "The Newfoundland Punishing the Little Dog", a chapter in W.H.G. Kingston's book, "Stories of the Sagacity of Animals". The guy must be British with such a proper name and title, but we need to be careful in that regard because of our ancestry and fear of reprisal from the Queen.
"You remember the way Byron punished his little assailant. Another Newfoundland dog, of a noble and generous disposition, was often assailed in the same way by noisy curs in the street. He generally passed them with apparent unconcern, till one little brute ventured to bite him in the back of the leg. This was a degree of wanton insult which could not be patiently endured; so turning round, he ran after the offender and seized him by the poll. In this manner he carried him to the quay, and holding him for some time over the water, at length dropped him into it. He did not, however, intend that the culprit should be drowned. Waiting till he was not only well ducked, but nearly sinking, he plunged in and brought him safely to land.
Could you venture to look a Newfoundland dog in the face, and call him a brute beast, if you feel that you have acted with less generosity than he exhibited!"
Okay, the story is written so British-proper that it loses a bit in translation, but you get the point. We're Gentle Giants but will only put up with so much. At some point on the patience scale, we might "seize" the "cur" by the "poll" and leave him "well ducked", but in the end act with "generosity". It's the civilized way of getting on with life. After all, we are anything but "brutes".
Very well, we're off to the "quay". Pee Time!