Drawing by Harrison Weir (1824-1906)
The anecdote I am now about to give is from the pen of the Rev. J.E. Atkinson, a good and scientific naturalist:
"Walking with a favorite Newfoundland dog of great size, one frosty day, I observed the animal's repeated disappointment on putting his head down, with the intention to drink, at sundry ice-covered pools. After one of these disappointments, I broke the ice with my foot, for my thirsty companion's behoof. The next time it seemed good to the dog to try and drink, instead of waiting for me to break the ice as before, he set his own huge paw forcibly on the ice, and, with a little effort, obtained water for himself."
From: Rev. R.O. Morris, B.A. Dogs and Their Doings. N.Y., Harper & Bros, 1872, p. 16f.
(reprinted from NewfTide 1976)