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Jataka Tales – The Elephant and the Dog

When two close friends are separated, what happens to them? Read their tale of joy and sorrow below!

Jataka Tales – The Elephant and the Dog PR042 UNIV 03

Once upon a time, there was an elephant who lived in the palace grounds. The elephant was cared for and loved by the king and so he was taken care of royally. He was fed well and bathed well and he had a good time roaming in the palace grounds. The mahout personally took care of the elephant and always resided close to the elephant. All this was observed by a dog nearby. He looked at the elephant through a grilled fence and drooled over the rich food he got. The dog himself was weak and so he was jealous about the treatment that the elephant got.

One day, the dog decided to sneak in and eat the food from behind the elephant. He did this successfully and after eating to his heart’s content, he would leave silently. Soon, the dog became strong and healthy. This went on for many days until the elephant caught him red handed. The dog was scared and stood stiff. But, the elephant raised his trunk and instead kept some food in the dog’s mouth. The elephant had turned out to be a kind soul and the dog was pleased! Soon, the elephant and the dog became thick friends and they did everything together. They bathed, ate, played and even slept together!

But all this was about to come to an end. One day, a man had come to the palace and he saw the dog and the elephant happily playing together. But moreover, he liked the dog and decided to take the dog home at any cost. So, he asked the mahout who lived nearby to sell the dog to him. Though the mahout did not have the slightest clue regarding the dog, he saw it as an opportunity to earn money and sold the dog for a certain sum of money. The man then took the dog home and as a result of this the elephant became depressed and did not eat or bathe.

The mahout told the king about this and he in turn told his wisest minister to investigate the reason behind the elephant’s behaviour. The minister went and saw the elephant and at once deduced that the elephant was depressed due to some reason. He questioned the mahout and soon came to know that the elephant had a dog as a friend and was separated recently. The minister informed the king about this and soon a royal messenger spread the news to everyone that whosoever was found to have the dog, would be punished severely.

The man who bought the dog heard this and immediately he let the dog go free. The dog at once ran back to the palace and rejoined with the elephant. They both were now happy as they were together and seeing this, the king was relieved and happy as well.

Moral – Good friendship is the best gift any human can have and it is very precious.

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