"What grown man is there in whose life the dog has not been a factor? Who pronounces the word 'home' or 'childhood' and sees not the dog in the pictures which rise before him?"
Good question (unless you're a cat person, but as you'll see, the basic idea still applies), and one asked by the Rev. Charles Josiah Adams in his book, Where is My Dog?: Or, Is Man Alone Immortal? (1892). He continues:
Is it any wonder that I raise the question: "Where is my dog?" Is he lost? Will I not spend money and time to find him? Not so much because he is worth anything, but because I love him. As a rule, the uglier a dog, the more his master loves him. Talk with the pound-keeper; he will tell you that all the tears are shed over curs. Is he dead? Where is he? Where are Dennis, and Tip, and Curly, and Doctor, and Prince? Where is Old Joe? Dead! Yes; but "does death end all" in the case of the dog any more than in the case of man? Man's life is so much more important. Are you sure? Who is to decide? Man, the dog, or God?
But the good reverend doesn't stop there, for what is valid for one creature is good for all others, is it not? Would you like to page through this book and reflect upon this with him? Here is a link to it at Google Books.