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THE DOG. THERE are many species of dogs; and they are useful to man in various ways. The people of cities, the shepherd, and the wild men of the woods, are all indebted to the faithful dog.
The dog is bold, sagacious, and affectionate; if a robber attacks his master's life, his house, or his property, this fearless creature will die to defend him: he listens to his voice, obeys his commands, partakes of his pleasures, follows his steps, and will not forsake him as long as he lives.
The shepherd's dog, the cur, the hound, the mastiff, the spaniel, the pointer, the terrier, are names of different species of dogs.
The shepherd's dog knows every one of his master's sheep; he will not suffer any strange sheep to come among them; he takes care of them when the shepherd is absent; assists to drive them to the field, and conducts them back to the fold.
The cur, is the useful servant of the farmer; he knows his master's own fields, and cattle; he takes care of his master's fields, and does not trouble himself with those of others; he walks peaceably about among his master's cattle, but he barks furiously at strangers, and drives them away.
The hound runs more swiftly, or he is more fleet than any other species of dog. He is used in hunting the deer, the fox, or the hare. In England, rich men keep great numbers of these dogs; they keep a man to take charge of them; they feed them very carefully, and give them a fine house to live in.
The mastiff, is a large and strong dog; he is kept to protect houses and gardens; he does not molest those who do not disturb him; but he warns them to keep away, by his loud and terrific barking.
The mastiff is not so playful as some other dogs are, but he knows how to punish the impertinence of an inferior,
A large mastiff was often molested by a little dog, and teased by his continual barking; the mastiff might have killed the little dog, but he chose to punish him gently, so he took him in his mouth by the back, and dropped him into a river which was near. The little dog did not like this, but he swam ashore, and afterwards left the mastiff in peace.
The NEWFOUNDLAND is but little smaller than the mastiff; his head is small, and his shape tong. His feet are so formed as to fit him peculiarly for swimming. His aspect is gentle and intelligent.
The Newfoundland dogs are employed in their native districts to draw carts and sledges, laden with wood and fish, and to perform a variety of useful offices, in the place of the horse. They are expert swimmers, and many instances have occurred in which they have saved the lives of drowning
The Bull Dog is distinguished for his fierceness, strength, and antipathy to the bull. He will fly at him, seize him by the nose, and sùch is his strength, that he will fasten the bull to the ground, without his power to escape. He is probably the most courageous
of animals. The SPANIEL is of Spanish extraction. He is remarkable for attachment to his master, and has been known to die of grief for his loss.
The WATER SPANIEL possesses the good qualities of the preceding in a very high degree. He is used for hunting ducks and water animals.
The Coach Dog is remarkable for beauty, it being white, elegantly and profusely marked with round black spots.
The Spanish POINTER receives instruction with great facility, and is taught to point out game to the sportsman, such as partridges, pheasants, and woodcocks, that may be crouching in their lurking places.
Nothing can be more surprising than the performances of this animal in the field. The English
. pointer is similar to the Spanish, but is less easily taught.
The SETTER has similar aptitudes to those of the pointer. He is possessed of exquisite scent and great sagacity.
The BEAGLE is usually employed in hare hunting. He is the smallest of dogs used in the chase.
The SPRINGER is a very lively species of dog, used principally in starting woodcocks and other birds in swamps and marshes.
The HARRIER resembles the Beagle, but is larger, stronger, and swifter. He is very ardent in the chase.
Besides these there are other varieties; the dog of Mount St. Bernard, who is employed by the benevolent monks to save travellers, who may be lost in the snows of the Alps, is an exceedinly interesting animal.
The Esquimaux dog, used by the Esquimaux Indian for drawing sledges, is very valuable.
There are several other kinds of domestic dogs, as well as a great variety of wild dogs.
The Esquimaux, a race of people inhabiting the most northerly parts of the American continent, and the adjoining islands, are dependent upon the services of then dogs for most of the few comforts of their lives; foi assistance in the chase; for carrying burdens; and for their rapid and certain conveyance over the trackless snows of their dreary plains.
The dogs, subjected to a constant dependence upon their masters, receiving scanty food and abundant chastisement, assist them in hunting the sea), the reindeer, and the bear.
In the summer, a single dog carries the weight of thirty pounds, in attending his master in the pursuit of game; in winter, yoked in numbers to heavy sledges, they draw five or six persons at the rate of seven or eight miles an honr, and will
perform journeys of sixty miles a day.
Dogs are very generally used in Holland and Switzerland, and some parts of France and Germany, for drawing small wagons with light loads. They are commonly employed in the vicinity of large towns to carry vegetables to market.
Dogs, in general, can bear hunger for a very long time, without any serious injury. A dog which had been shut up and forgotten in a country house, was sustained for forty days without any nourishment beyond the wool of a quilt, which he had torn in pieces. A dog has been known live thirty-six days without food.
Mr. Southey relates two instances of dogs that had acquired such a knowledge of time as would enable them to count the days of the week.
He says, My grand-father had one which trudged two miles every Saturday to cater for himself in the shambles.'
I know another more extraordinarv and well authenticated example.
A dog, which belonged to an Irishman, and was sold by him in England, would never touch a morsel of food upon Friday, that being the day on which the Catholics fast.