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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