Sergeant-Major Morris fills the Whites' ears with warnings about the paw, but the family doesn't seem to understand their implications. Perhaps Morris's most telling comment about what will happen in the end comes when he tells them that
"The first man had his three wishes. Yes," was the reply; "I don't know what the first two were, but the third was for death. That's how I got the paw."
"Death" is the key word here, and it is only one of the instances of foreshadowing spoken by Morris. He mentions the paw's "magic" and the "mischief" it has created, in tones that "were so grave that a hush fell upon the group." Morris warns the Whites not to "blame me for what happens," and he repeats the request again before he departs; Mr. White tells his wife and son that Morris "pressed me again to throw it away."