Our Jake is such a boy dog.
I don’t mean to offend any men by saying that, honestly I don’t. I just always think of little girls as wanting to be neat and clean and little boys as preferring to be messy and dirty. That would, I repeat, make Jake such a boy dog.
Our RoadDog does not like to be groomed. He doesn’t want his nails trimmed. He just manages to tolerate his nightly combing and that’s only because he’s half asleep by the time I force it on him. I won’t even tell you about trying to brush his teeth other than to say that, apparently, Jake does not care that tartar buildup could cause health problems down the road. He likes the taste of the toothpaste and would be happy to eat it if we’d let him, but there’s just no way we’re getting that brush moving around in his mouth.
So, what do we do when it comes time for a bath? Even boy dogs need to get clean once in awhile.
From the time Jake was a puppy, bathing him was a huge struggle. We tried putting him in the laundry tub and he fought his way out amid much sloshing and splashing. We tried the big air tub upstairs, minus the bubbles of course, but that didn’t go much smoother and, if I remember correctly, I ended up with bruised ribs from leaning over the side.
Eventually we decided Jake was more of a shower type than a bath type. To be fair, that’s largely because there’s a door on the shower cubicle so he can’t get away, at least not when Steve is leaning on the other side of the door.
Now whenever our boy needs a bath — which he did just last week — Steve takes him outside as a distraction and scoops him up when they come back inside. Meanwhile, I put on an old swimsuit and prepare the torture chamber (oops, I mean bathroom) by putting a rubber mat on the shower floor, removing all bottles which could fall on our heads during the battle and getting towels out and ready so they’ll be handy to throw over a soggy Jake when he decides to shake water all over the bathroom.
Then Jake and I head into the shower. Thank goodness for handheld shower nozzles. Without that, I don’t know how we’d ever get our RoadDog clean.
It’s quite a struggle in there. Jake tries to escape, both the cubicle and the shower nozzle, while I try to speak encouraging words and Steve stands outside, holding the door shut, mostly laughing at us. I’m pretty sure there have been times when he’s seen Jake’s four little paws and little black nose pushing up against the shower door like one of those cats popular in rear car windows a few years ago.
The amazing thing is that when it’s all over and we’ve toweled him off (we also use a hair dryer in the winter), Jake is the happiest dog in the world. He runs around the house with a big smile, rolling around on the rugs. We can just tell he feels good.
He might not like to get clean, but I think, just maybe, our RoadDog likes to be clean … at least for a little while.