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Humans and animals have been companions for thousands of years At the surface it may seem like a purely biologically symbiotic relationship but while the symbiosis is true the relationship is deeper than that Whether either participant is concious of it or not animals provide a number of emotional and psychological benefits for the human and vice versa In the works of fiction we are studying this relationship is no clearer than in Jose Saramagos novel Blindness and Sinclair Rosss collection of linked short stories The Lamp at Noon and Other Stories In both these works the animals symbolize humans extreme need for companionship at their neediest times In Blindness the dog of tears meets up with the main character the doctors wife when she finds herself lost on her way back from the supermarket She is walking through a series of streets which all look the same and realizes she is lost Due to her extremely low amount of energy at this point she breaks down for the first time in the book and cries This is the lowest point of the doctors wifes confidence and hope drained of any strength of all strength she burst into tears 234 A pack of semi-wild dogs is nearby and one of them the dog of tears comes right up to her and licks the tears from her face one of them licks her face perhaps it had been used to drying tears ever since it was a puppy 234 She embraces the dog releasing her anguish and when she has finished she looks up from the dog and sees a neighbourhood directory and finds her way back to the people she was coming back from the supermarket to The dog of tears offers the doctors wife a friendship which cannot be equalled by any human The doctors wife loves her husband and her human friends and trusts them but the dog of
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