Old Yeller

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Old Yeller

Old YellerBy: Fred Gipson

In the wild Texas frontier Papa and other farmers go together to take their cattle to Kansas. He tells his son Travis that he must be the man in the family while he is gone and to take care of Mama and Little Arliss. Travis takes on the challenges of plowing the fields into the night and knows if he does well Papa might get him a horse. While walking the next morning to a dead carcass hanging outside to cut a piece of meat, he suddenly realizes it is gone and has been replaced by an old yeller dog with the noticeably belly of a thieving rascal. Little Arliss immediately falls in love with this dog but Travis does not like him at all. He misses his own dog Bell who had died and thinks nothing can replace him. He continues on with tasks like plowing the fields, hunting, and repairing. One day he hears screams and sprints following the sound, knowing it is Little Arliss. He sees a furious mother running to Little Arliss with her cub in his hand. Travis knows there is no way he will get there in time but then a streak of yellow runs out, Old Yeller, and starts roaring like an angry bull. He saves Little Arliss life by fighting the mother bear successfully so Mama could grab him. Travis now has a new respect for this dog because he saved his brother's life. The next morning he took Little Arliss and Old Yeller squirrel hunting which was not very successful. Travis was trying to shoot a turkey but Little Arliss did not help and he lost it. But Old Yeller was able to get it and bring it back for Travis. One day Bud Searcy, the person in charge of everyone while the men are gone, and his daughter Lisbeth came to check on their family. Lisbeth told Travis how Old Yeller had been stealing eggs from their coup and meat right out the smoke houses. She was not going to tell because her dog Miss Prissy is going to have Old Yeller’s pups. One day a man named Burn Sanderson came and claimed Old Yeller. No one wanted to give Old Yeller away especially Little Arliss who had a fit so they made a trade, Old Yeller for a nice dinner. After dinner he pulled Travis aside and told him about the hydrophobia, a disease that makes animals and people foam at the mouth while going mad, outbreak in the town. Unfortunately many of their animals got sick with disease and had to be killed, including their beloved Old Yeller. He was essential for them surviving and truly helped Travis in his duty of being the man of the family. Papa returns with a beautiful blue roan horse for Travis to ride. Although Old Yeller is dead Travis still has part of him in his puppy that Lisbeth gave to him.


Little Arliss screamed as Travis was sprinting on his way to find and help him. Travis saw Little Arliss with a bear cub in his hand and knew he could get there no faster than the furious mother bear. Knowing what happen to his brother Travis nearly went blind but out of the bush a flash of yellow rushed out, Old Yeller. He roared like mad bull and got in a tangled fight with the much larger bear who was having much trouble killing this dog. Little Arliss is saved by Mama and soon after Old Yeller returns with few wounds. Even though Travis did not entirely like Old Yeller he now changing his mind because of Yeller had shown such loyalty to his family. “After that, I couldn’t do enough for Old Yeller (Gipson 40).” If he did not have such courage and loyalty to his companion Little Arliss, the boy would have been killed. Travis is now recognizing how this extremely intelligent dog could help them on the frontier.

Example One

Papa is leaving for Kansas to sell his cattle for cash money, something all settlers in the wild Texas frontier needed. All of his responsibilities will be given to his son Travis, the man of the family while Papa is away. Travis promises to take care of Mama and his younger sibling Little Arliss. He is now in charge of getting food and protecting his family. Travis must be loyal and to his family and work exceptionally hard. He must be loyal and trustworthy to the promise that he gave Papa before he left. In order to survive he must act as man and master all the tasks that have been passed down to him.

The theme is important to have something the story is about or relates to. It needs to have a point and a purpose which the theme gives. It also helps the author send their feeling about the time or their feelings about characters and events. The statement the author is trying to say is that it is a challenge to survive in the frontier and everyone must work together and be loyal benefiting others and the town. Old Yeller shows how he is loyal to his family by protecting and feeding them which both ensure their survival.ur text here

Without Mama mentioning a word Travis goes to plow the fields right after dinner. He went to go get Jumper, a mule who helps plow the fields and carry meat from the woods, to assist him in the job. While plowing Jumper decided it was time to stop but Travis needed to finish the entire field so he hit Jumper with a club. Jumper serves an important role in the family’s survival as he large and assists in plowing the fields which is far easier than a person doing the task. In the Texas frontier people need grain to feed all of their animals and themselves. Travis showed his loyalty and responsibility once more by immediately going to plow after dinner.

Example Two

Theme Importance

Theme:Loyalty and Survival

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Example Three


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