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In Francine Prose’s “Talking Dog” the central symbol of the story is a white dog. The dog represents a messenger or a guardian angel figure. This can be seen in several places, but the most noticeable is when the narrator’s sister claims that “the dog,… had come to [me] after Jimmy died and personally guaranteed it that Jimmy was still alive.” (511) Much like Mary Mandolin’s accouter at Jesus’s tomb or even now a day angel testimony’s.

However the dog also moves the plot forward showing the mental decay of the narrator’s sister and-or the sisters need to outlet her emotions. As we find out in the last sentence of “Talking Dog” that the narrator doubts their sisters ability to talk to the dog. “I wanted to say she’d lied to us all, she’d faked it about the dog, as if it mattered whether the animal spoke, as if love were about the truth, as if he would love her less—and not more—for pretending to talk to a dog.”(512)

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