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Any readers who also follow me on twitter will have guessed by now that I am also quite fond of the history of animals, and most especially that of dogs. They have been our loyal and loving companions for thousands of years, and in eighteenth-century art are frequently to be found playing a small (and so often neglected) role in human love affairs. Whether there to protect your honour from the intentions of a dishonest rake or to distract you from a romance gone awry, never mind men – whatever stage of life she may find herself in, a dog is clearly Woman’s Best Friend. As proof, here is a selection of faithful canines to remind you that whatever happens to your heart, all is not lost… A dog will:

1. Attempt to protect your virtue from the advances of good-for-nothing scoundrels (even if it’s a hopeless case)

hogarth‘Before’, William Hogarth, 1730-1

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2. Help you to attract more appropriate suitors by making you look even more ravishingly happy & beautiful than usual

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Emma Hart, by George Romney

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3. Console with you when the promisingly handsome, rich young beau who has been making eyes at you for weeks leaves the neighbourhood

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‘Maria’, 1787

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4. Be happy to make personal sacrifices (i.e. any semblance of dignity) in the name of distracting you from your romantic woes

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‘A Dog of the Havannah Breed’, Jean Jacques Bachelier, 1768

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 5. Not say ‘I told you so’ as you end up trashing your room while in lamentation for the loss of your virginity

The Broken Mirror, c.1762-63 (oil on canvas)‘The Broken Mirror’, Jean Baptiste Greuze, c. 1762

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6. Offer emotional support when it turns out that your husband wasn’t away on a business trip after all, & has tripped back from America with a younger, prettier wife. Even if you do end up raving like a ‘maniac’

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‘The Fair Maniac’, 1797

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7. Be a friendly companion when you are plunged back into the single life

Albina 1791 AN01033599_001_l‘Albina’, 1761

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8. And if all else fails, take your mind your mind off your heartbreak by getting under your feet as only a dog knows how

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‘The Dog’, 1784

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Because let’s face it, a happy relationship with a dog isn’t going to end in tears when it gets cold feet about commitment and runs off with the labradoodle next door.

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6 thoughts on “Eight reasons why a dog is the broken-hearted woman’s best friend

  1. Pingback: Eight reasons why a dog is the broken-hearted woman’s best friend | My BlogThe Philosopher's blog.

  2. Pingback: Eight reasons why a dog is the broken-hearted woman’s best friend | Colorado Right

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