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A Curious Friendship

[Feb. 6, 1875.]

I have two dogs, two cats, and a kitten. Many years of experience have
shown me, in the teeth of all proverbs, that cats and dogs, members of
the same household, live together quite as amicably as human beings.

Only, like human beings, they have their dislikes and preferences for
each other. At the present time, my dog Snow is on terms of hearty
friendship with my grey cat Kitty, but of polite indifference with my
black cat Toppy.

Toppy, for some years back, has been subject to fits, owing, it is
considered, to the lodgment of some small shot near her spine, whilst
out trespassing (or poaching).

Yesterday Snow rushed into the kitchen with face so anxious and piteous
that my servants both exclaimed that something must have happened; gave
signs, as he can do, that somebody was to go with him, and was followed
into the drawing-room, where Toppy, left alone, had fallen under the
grate in a fit, and was writhing amid the ashes and embers. She was
rescued, and beyond a little singeing, does not seem much the worse.

To reach the kitchen, Snow must have pushed open a red-baize door, which
he has never been known to open before, and before which he will stay
barking for ten minutes at a time to be let through.

If any biped, supposing himself to be endowed with reason, humanity, and
articulate speech, tells me that Snow is a conscious automaton, can I
give him any other answer than, "You're another"?

J. M. L.

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