A dog watching a rat in the water at Dedham

A dog watching a rat in the water at Dedham

Although Constable often included animals in his landscapes, images of individual animals are unusual in his oeuvre. This lively depiction of a dog watching a water rat eschews the sentimentality that was to characterise much animal painting in the coming decades. Constable probably made this watercolour while travelling from London to Suffolk to collect his daughters, who were staying with his family there.