Analyze Carlson's reasons for and Candy's reasons against shooting Candy's dog. How do they touch on the central issues of this novel?
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I don't think these ranch guys view animals in the same way that urban populations might. These guys work hard and animals, even domesticated dogs, are a tool to get work done. When animals cease to be of service, they are usually put down. Candy's dog stayed with him in the bunkhouse. He was old and smelled bad. Carlson wanted to do what should have happened, on a ranch, a long time ago. The dog was Candy's only friend. To Candy, his dog meant more than a working animal.