dog helps the man
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The dog doesn't really help the man the dog acts out of instinct born from hundreds of years of doggy evolution. The dog wanted to hold back but the man went on. At times the man forced to dog to walk ahead of him to avoid thin ice and deep snow. The dog preferred to stay away from the man remembering the sting of his whip. This was a good thing considering the man wanted to turn the dog into a sleeping bag near the end of the story.