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I can remember watching the original Old Yeller movie from 1956 when I was a child. I really wanted to shed a tear when it was obvious that dogs don't live forever (Honestly, I probably did cry while watching it in my Kindergarten class). The element in all great animal related stories is their sense of loyalty to their masters.
Many of you probably have your own stories of being protected by your pet in times of danger. My wife and I just recently bought a home with enough property to have a dog but until then we weren't able to even think about getting one due to the impracticality of apartment living. We did have two cats during that time of our lives (fortunately, Roxy and Norah are still with us and healthy as ever), and I can remember a time when Roxy, our oldest cat, started making sounds we had never heard before as she sat in front of the AC unit. After just a couple minutes it was clear that she wanted us to come over there and investigate. When we did we quickly found smoke coming from the unit due to an electrical short in the wires. We called the maintenance men and had it repaired, all thanks to our alert and loyal feline friend.
This painting conveyed the idea of a dog's loyalty. He's sitting and waiting for any need his owner might have. So remember to be nice to your pet because they might just keep your house from burning! - Jared