Krypto #58: Tales of the Super-Pets

From: Superman #176 and Action Comics #323 (April 1965)

Our first story begins with the reading of a millionaire's will who leaves his greedy family members a buck apiece and his millions to charity. One charity in particular interests us:
There's no mention of him being eccentric or anything, but he just put four animals in charge of running a 2-million-dollar-in-1965-dollars shelter for homeless pets. That's a little eccentric. And he does it to atone for his grandfather's wrongs. No records of these exist, so Superman and the Pets travel to the 1860s to find out what the deal was, posing as circus folk (Superb-o and his Superb Pets) so as not to destroy the timeline.
They soon discover the time period isn't kind to animals, especially the Big Top. For example, one animal trainer makes his bear dance by subjecting its feet to hot coals. In the whole of 1866 Metropolis, there's only really one friend to the animals, a man called Henry Bergh. So the Super-Pets take it upon themselves to get a little revenge on the period bullies.
When we finally meet the millionaire's granddad, one Cyrus Atwill, junk dealer, we discover his many animal abuses. He works his horse to death, and goes out of his way to kick or torture dogs, cats and monkeys. (My dad used to cross the street to kick cats, which may or may not account for my great love of animals and estrangement from the paternal figur--FAKE TALK!) So Superb-o and his menagerie decide to teach him a good lesson. Take it away, Comet.
After Comet, it's our boy Krypto's turn, cementing Atwill's bad day (HAW! geddit?).
And then Streaky and Beppo, until Atwill turns himself in to the police for animal cruelty. And Henry Bergh, friend to the animals and crusader for animal rights legislation? You might not have realized it, but he was a historical celebrity all along:
Oh Superman, have you learned nothing from Henry Bergh? Forcing your pets to do administrative work is surely a form of cruelty. At least I would think so if I were a pet. I really want to see the follow-up about the shelter's terrible mismanagement.

Meanwhile, in Action Comics #323, Supergirl is turned evil by the Evil Three - Lucrezia Borgia, Mata Hari and Lady MacBeth - and she tries to poison the Super-Pets.
Krypto runs away before he drinks from the kryptonite cocktail. Not the best showing, pupper!

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