As an only child in a remote area, Jody is thrilled to have a pet that can be his companion as he does his chores; something to pet and love fills a space in the boy, especially after his crippled friend dies.
Here, then, are four examples of Jody's sense of responsibility is exemplified in his care for his fawn, Flag.
1. In Chapter 16, Jody bars the fawn from the lot in which he milks the cow Trixie. Little Flag just stands at the gate looking in longingly.
2. In Chapter 17 as Jody hoes the sweet potato patch, Flag lies in the hedge row. But, at times it "galloped up and down the sweet potato beds, trampling the vines." Jody is ready to put it into the shed, but Flag lies down quietly and watches from the shade. Jodi, then, hoes the weeds more quickly with the fawn as his audience.
3. When it is time for supper, Jodi shuts the fawn in the shed because he eats biscuits, cornmeal, green leaves--"almost anything."
4. In Chapter 22, Flag grows and feels the same restlessness that comes to Jody. One day he stretches his legs and goes into the brush, but circles around and returns to Jody. "That evening Flag got himself in serious disgrace" because he finds the sweet potatoes in a pile on back porch. Flag learns that he can bump the stack of potatoes with his head and they will roll. The he tramples upon them with his hard hooves and goes from one to another, taking little bites out of each, causing great damage. After this, Jody builds a pen, but the fawn is able to leap out, so Penny shows him how to build a coop over the sweet potatoes.
Jody also brings the fawn in at night because his scent brings predators such as a young bear.