Sunday, August 28, 2011

You Think You’ve Got it Ruff?

My owners are idiots. 
They brought me to the grandparent’s house, leashed me to a shade tree, left me a bowl of water and patted my head.  They were gone for 2 hours (that’s 14 in dog hours), during which time the old folks’ automatic sprinklers timed ‘on.’  There I was trapped in my 10 foot circle while the Ch-ch-ch-ch-tsssssssssssss Ch-ch-ch-ch- tssssssssssss spritzes of water, from which I could not escape, nailed me every 20 seconds.  Oh, they came home and felt bad, but I definitely heard some chuckling at my expense.
This latest incident follows a long summer of “First Time Dog Owner” follies with me as the main act.  Heidi’s previous blog detailing my humiliating “all-over” shave was a crock of dog-doo.  I would have titled it, “Jasmine feels all exposed and NASTY.” I’m glad she got butt-fur on her face.  If I had known it would have caused her such discomfort, I would have blown the hair up at her myself.
This all started back in July, when the “fam” took me with them to a lake house.  They let me swim and run around on the sand bar, catching Nerf balls, which was great.  But all that physical activity loosened things up and you know…I had to go.  As soon as they saw me squat (and it was WAY too late for me to stop squatting), I got yanked back in the boat while someone danced around screaming for something plastic.  I was brought to shore immediately, which I thought was silly, because I was “clearly” DONE.
A couple of weeks after the lake weekend, I started to itch--A LOT. The recommended Borax bath was supposed to dry naturally--so I couldn’t be toweled dry on my way outside.  BOY was I heavy --I could hardly move.  I couldn’t stand it…one…. more…minute… and I shook so furiously, the ceiling and walls were dripping.  That felt better.  Then my skin and hair turned snowy white.  The neighbor dogs raised their tails and growled at me.  Hey—it’s still me guys, I tried to communicate, even though I looked like the canine Methuselah.
The doctor admitted the bath didn’t help, because 2 days later I was covered in the grossest possible nodules.  She prescribed BIG green pills for my skin infection that I got to eat off a spoon with peanut butter.  That almost made up for the fact that I had to be brushed 3 times a day to get rid of the potato-chip sized flakes in my hair. 

Well, after this past weekend “Sprinkler Soak”, I decided to get even.
I tried to stay as moist as possible so the wet-dog smell would permeate the carpet and car upholstery on the drive home.  Next, I inhaled all the air in the car and exhaled it through my mouth.  It was raining so they couldn’t open the windows.  To their credit, the four of them didn’t complain much, and I got 10- 15 Pizza doggie treats just for looking cute.
Guilt is a wonderful tool.
Signed, Jasmine

Thursday, August 4, 2011

MY GOD! Animals are covered in hair!

Jasmine, our Golden Retriever, needed a special bath to help sooth a skin irritation.  My idea was to shear her hair shorter so the bath concoction would penetrate better.  I have a friend who shaves baby cows to prepare them for the county fair—BABY COWS!  How hard could clipping a 60 lb. dog be?
Ah, the naivety of a first time dog owner.
I decided I should give her a haircut before I got out anything electric.  Jasmine “laps up” any attention I give her, so for the majority of the grooming session, she lay in her deep-sleep, “Butcher Chart” pose, still, aside from her tail thumping.  The books will tell you to have her either stand or sit…but I didn’t think to consult those books.
Using the “Grab a Hank and Cut” method, I felt like the White Witch from “The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe” with Aslan on the stone table.  After an hour and a half of squatting, rolling and panting (me, not the dog), one slightly molted canine emerged and one garbage bag of 4” hair was harvested.  The books would tell you to bathe the dog before you trim her hair too.  Next time…
For step two, I found Fred’s hair clipper (which I use it on him semi-monthly) and popped a ¾ inch hair measurey-thingy on the end and started it up.  MY GOD!  Animals are covered in hair!  With the exception of a small portion of flesh on her belly and maybe her nose and eyeballs, everything else had follicles.  I sat on our porch outside on a non-windy, humid day with Jasmine across my lap and buzzed and buzzed until my buzzer hand was cramped and the clippers and I whined for a break. 
Then I had to flip her.
As I turned her over on her opposite side…a sudden wind blew.  A flurry of Jasmine’s fluffy white butt-hair, made fluffier from the procedures, blew up at me and stuck to my sweaty skin.  All of a sudden, I was itchy and I didn’t have enough fingers to scratch all the itches.  I wanted to quit, but I was only half done.  Back straining, arms shaking, I shore my last stripe 30 minutes later.  “Alternate Dimension” Jasmine was born--not quite a dog, not quite a sheep.  A SHOG.  She happily ran off.
Covered with dog fuzz, I wasn’t quite sure what to do next.  I didn’t want to go in the house like this.  I considered just hosing myself off outside, but I didn’t think I could do that to myself.  Finally, my solution was to strip off all my clothes in the garage, with the door closed of course, plug a small fan in and hold it up to my face to release the hair that wasn’t cemented to my skin.  I then streaked into the house for a shower.    
I startled my daughter, Krista, who had just come upstairs and who was completely oblivious to what I had been doing.  Alarmed, she asked, “Why are you naked?” 
Followed closely by, “Why are you furry?”
Shog grazing.
In the mirror, I was “The Shaggy DA” wearing a Charlton Heston (as Moses) descending the mountain with the 10 Commandments in hand, white wig.
I’m glad I’m a “fairly” hairless human, who will probably not complain about her one chin hair anytime soon.