Analyzing the Text
She describes “his sullen face” and what she supposes is his lip. She revises her initial statement after further observing and thinking about the fish.
The fish hooks are trophies from his past victories against other fishers who tried to catch him.
It is the fish’s victory. The enemies are the fishers, including the narrator.
The references to “medals” and “a five-haired beard of wisdom” depict the fish as a symbol of longevity and cunning intelligence. The rainbow at the end symbolizes the beauty of nature.
The narrator feels respect for the fish after realizing how much he has endured. The fish, like the dog, is expertly adapted for survival.