Quote from Irving Litvag from his biography on Albert Payson Terhune (author of "Lad: A Dog" and others),  entitled "THE MASTER OF SUNNYBANK"
.... "You took this Collie dog and you told stories about his greatness and goodness and love and eternal loyalty, and with your story telling skill, you made us actually fall in love with a Collie dog !  And he became the dog we always wanted to have and never did.  Maybe even more than that.... maybe he became the friend we always wanted to find, or even the brother or the father.  And this authentic-imaginery dog...  this Collie dog took hold of us and won't let go."