Here is a quote from The Summer Guest by Justin Cronin (see February 10th). This is a great book.
...Ritzy the dog... I love him, as one can only love such a dog; but I also knew what he was. Behind his eyes, twin chestnuts of the most tender soulfulness, lay, encased in its suitcase of bone, a brain that knew nothing at all of time or sorrow or even the true joy that sorrow makes possible—only its own desire to please, an aching, needful love that could achieve its fullest contentment with the most meager offering: a stale biscuit, a walk around the block to do his business, a pat on the golden head. His own existence, its nature and finitude, was a mystery to him; he might have thought he was a person, or else I was a dog. The day I took him to the vet to have him put down—he was thirteen—I could think of only this to say: "You have been a good dog, and a great comfort to me, and I thank you." It was all he wanted to hear. I'd never wished so badly to be the dog he thought I was.