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  • The Children’s Hour, published in 1879, contains the following colloquy entitled “A Dog’s Life�?:

    “I wonder what people mean by saying that this one or that one leads a dog's life?�? said Ruth Wilbur. “I think dogs have a very easy sort of life indeed; they never have to go to school, or comb their own hair, or wash dishes, or do any of those disagreeable things. Don't you wish you were a dog, Louise?�?

    “No,�? said Louise, “I've seen dogs I felt real sorry for; when nobody spoke a kind word to them, but just kicked them about, and made them feel real bad, I know. I like dogs.�?

    “So do I,�? said Ruth, “especially Ned. He's a jolly good dog! Some dogs have to work for their living,�? she added thoughtfully. “They churn, they guard sheep, they follow the chase, they watch their masters' houses and goods. A dog's life is a hard one when he is only kicked and cuffed, and never hears a kind word.�?

    “Then people must mean that one leads a dog's life when no one is kind to him,�? said Louise. “I don't want to lead such a life.�?

    “Nor help any one else to,�? said Ruth.

    July 27, 2009