Have dogs some means of communicating with each other, some method of conversation besides barking, growling and whining, tail wagging and hair bristling?
Major A. J. Dawson, an English expert on dogs, and the author of the adventures of "Jan, Son of Finn," tale of a bloodhound who joined the Northwest Mounted, says that dogs can talk and he makes them talk in all of his books about them.
Major Dawson believes that dogs talk to each other just as much as human beings. He says they argue, declaim, discuss, persuade, exhort, threaten, cajole. They relate yarns, says the Major. They deliver orations. They reminisce. They tell funny stories. And they respect all the conventions in the matter of polite small talk.
"Some humans," says Major Dawson, "have a way of talking that a dog understands. This applies not only to words of command, which any fool dog will pick up," says the Major, "but to ordinary talk. I know one household," he says, "where anything about the dog himself which it is not desirable that he should hear is said in French."
Major Dawson is a judge and exhibitor of pedigree dogs, and has won honors at many championship shows with his Irish wolfhounds. His latest book, "Jan, Son of Finn," published by E. P. Dutton and Company, is a tale of the adventures of a dog whose mother was a beautiful bloodhound and whose sire was the Irish wolfhound, Finn.
Finn's life-story, published 20 years ago, was hailed as a classic and placed beside Kipling's "Jungle Stories".
Jan's life in the Canadian Northwest is as thrillingly recorded, and is even more adventurous, than Finn's; its setting wilder and its hazards greater.
"Any dog" says K.K. in the London Evening Standard, "would cheerfully give even the most succulent and freshly devilled bone to the man who wrote these books."
Decatur Herald, Decatur, Illinois. Friday, August 3rd, 1928