The Otter & The Hog
It was Tuesday. Every Tuesday, Hog took a stroll along the river. As Hog walked, flies dropped dead and flowers wilted. The snakes slithered back under the leaves. The fish were sure not to jump out of the river. All of the animals along the river disappeared, except one.
Tuesday is the only day that Otter has time to swim in the river to gather food. The rest of the week, Otter stays down at the lodge. While swimming in the river one Tuesday, Otter noticed Hog trotting along the bank.
“Hello Hog!” Otter said, as he flipped out of the stream. Otter soon regretted getting out of the water. Otter’s nose burned as he inhaled the smell of Hog. Otter stuttered, “Isn’t it a fine day?”
Hog quickly answered, “My, yes it is!”
Hog’s breath was a warm gust of malodor in Otter’s face. Otter was trying his best to keep his eyes open. “Sure looks like a nice day for a bath, wouldn’t you say?”
Hog replied, “Why it is, isn’t it! Maybe the gulls should have their weekly bath today!”
Otter looked down as he started to blush. He slowly muttered, “I meant you, Hog.”
Confused, Hog took a good look at the sky and a good look back at Otter’s beady eyes. “What are you trying to say Otter? I do not stink!”
Otter softly replied, “Oh, yes you do. Why do you think no other animals are out? How do you explain the wilting flowers in the middle of spring?”
Hog looked around at his surroundings and took a good sniff of air. Hog took another good sniff of air. This time he exhaled through his mouth.
“I don’t smell anything wrong, Otter. If the other animals want to hide, then let them. I smell only through one nose, mine. If you can’t handle it, then you can be on your way.”
And with that, Hog continued his stroll, strutting along the river, alone.
Moral: To each his own.
Moral Theory Relation
In this story, Hog is very stinky. Hog is so smelly that the other animals choose to hide from his stench. Otter had the courage to tell Hog about his smell. When Hog was exposed to the truth, he reacted by telling Otter that he did not need to change himself for anybody. This story supports the theory of Individual Rights that states it is a duty of society members not to interfere with any individual’s rights. While the other animals may not be fond of Hog’s smell, Hog has the right to smell as he pleases. According to Individual Rights Theory, Otter had no right to tell Hog to take a bath as it would interfere with his right to smell as he pleases. Although, also according to the Individual Rights Theory, because Hog’s stench was causing the other animals of the River to hide, he infringed on their right to go about their regular activities.