Christians celebrate November 1 as the Feast of All Saints. But I like to dedicate today to St. Roch, the patron saint of dogs. St. Roch is also the patron saint of invalids, bachelors, surgeons, tile makers, and cattle disease.
According to legend, St. Roch was born in Montpellier, France 1295 to a wealthy family, but he gave away all his earthly possessions at age 20 when both his parents died. He then traveled to Rome where he began attending to the sick. Soon he became known for miraculously curing people by making the sign of the cross on them.
When he became ill, he was expelled from the city and made a hut of leaves and branches in the forest (I suspect this is where his patron of bachelors status came from). There, a dog belonging to a nobleman brought him bread and licked his wounds, eventually healing them. One day, the nobleman followed his bread-carrying dog, discovered Saint Roch, and became his acolyte. St. Roch ultimately died in prison in 1327 (his unscrupulous uncle put him there and Roch refused to give his true identity to avoid worldly glory) before the Black Plague ravaged Europe from 1347 - 1349. But his story survived and a rich iconography developed around him during those terrifying times.
Here are some works depicting St. Roch. Not all include dogs, but I thought they were interesting.
P.S. St. Roch in Italian is St. Rocco, which sounds cooler to me.