I’ve never known a dog to wag
His tail in glee he didn’t feel,
Nor quit his old-time friend to tag
At some more influential heel.
The yellowest cur I ever knew
Was to the boy who loved him true.
I’ve never known a dog to show
Half-way devotion to his friend,
To seek a kinder man to know
Or richer, but unto the end
The humblest dog I ever knew
Was, to the man that loved him, true.
I’ve never known a dog to fake
Affection for a present gain,
A false display of love to make,
Some little favor to attain.
I’ve never known a Prince or Spot
That seemed to be what he was not.
But I have known a dog to fight
With all his strength to shield a friend
And, whether wrong or whether right,
To stick with him until the end.
And I have known a dog to lick
The hand of him that men would kick.
And I have known a dog to bear
Starvation’s pangs from day to day
With him who had been glad to share
His bread and meat along the way.
No dog, however mean or rude,
Is guilty of ingratitude.
The dog is listed with the dumb,
No voice has he to speak his creed,
His messages to humans come
By faithful conduct and by deed.
He shows, as seldom mortals do,
A high ideal of being true.