Dec 17
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“It is well to bear in mind that the truth about dogs is as elusive as the truth about man. You cannot put your finger on any quality and safely say, ‘This is doglike,’ nor on any other quality and say, ‘This is not.’ Dogs are individualists. They react to no set bylaws of behaviorism, they are guided by no strict precepts of conduct, they obey unvaryingly no system of instinct, they follow religiously no standard of bloodlines. I know an English bulldog with the manner of a Chesterfield. I know a beagle that can tell time. I know a Scottie that never has the slightest idea what time it is, and I miserably admit to the ownership of a high-bred French poodle that cools its soup by fanning it with a hat.”

— James Thurber, “Dogs I Have Scratched,” in The Dog Department: James Thurber on Hounds, Scotties, and Talking Poodles, ed. Michael J. Rosen (New York: Harper Collins, 2001), 56.


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