Argos, Odysseus' dog, is symbolic of the kingdom of Ithaca. When Odysseus left Ithaca, Argos was a strong and quick dog renowned for his tracking prowess; however, Argos, like the rest of his house and kingdom, had been neglected by the servants and suitors. As Homer writes in book 17: " Now that his master was gone he was lying neglected on the heaps of mule and cow dung that lay in front of the stable..."
"As they spoke, a dog who was lying there lifted his headand pricked up his ears. It was Argos, Odysseus’ dog;he had trained him and brought him up as a puppy, but never hunted with him before he sailed off to Troy."
“As soon as he saw Odysseus standing there, he dropped his ears and wagged his tail, but he could not get close up to his master.”