The Red Book Of Animal Stories - online children's book

Stories of Animals, Fantastic and Mundane, Edited By Andrew Lang

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A story is told of a little Italian greyhound who lived at Bologna in Italy, and was a great favourite with his master. Bologna is a cold place, and greyhounds are often delicate, so a jacket was made for him to wear at night. It was tied on tightly with strings, which were all very well as long as he was lying down in front of the warm stove, but became very troublesome when he wanted to move about and play. So the first thing when he woke he used to run off to anybody in the house who was dressed as early as himself, and jump up on them, and lick their hands till they understood what he was saying, and unfastened his jacket. One day, however, everyone was either ill or busy, and had no time to attend to him, so it occurred to him that, perhaps, if he were to rub himself against the chairs or along the carpet, those tiresome strings would get untied. To his great joy this plan succeeded, and after that he could do without anyone's help. The moment the jacket was off, and the front door open, he rushed across the road to visit another greyhound who lived there with a family, to beg him to come out for a walk. Very often they would spend hours together running races, or playing hide-and-seek between the arches which abound in the streets of Bologna ; but he never missed going home to his dinner at twelve o'clock, and again in the evening.
If his friend's front door was not open so early as his own, he would bark loudly to awaken the lazy people ; but as they were fond of their beds, they grew very angry, and shied stones to drive him away. Then he stood so close to the door that the stones could not hit him, and barked triumphantly on, till suddenly the door was flung open, and a man appeared with a whip. The dog could not think of any way to get the better of the whip, so he walked off to consider what was to be done.
A few days later, he went back to the door and waited quietly till it was opened ; but the people had taken «' dislike to him, on account of all the trouble he had given
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