Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The things we do for love


And the blogging ain't eeeeeeeasy.

I could go on, but you get the picture.

Yep, school is out and I've returned to my role as pack mule/chauffeur/personal assistant/personal chef/home health care nurse/police officer.  And it hasn't even been a full week since the last day.  Strap in, readers, it's going to be a wacky summer with fewer posts than I would like.  But, you know, those children of mine demand to be fed, so what can I do?

My other children, the four-legged variety, are also a bit needy these days.  Charleston the Terror looked like she swung one too many barbed "Yo Mamas" and ended up in a bar brawl.  She had a deep gash under her eye the source of which still confounds us.  Off to the vet we went, she and I.  No stitches, thankfully, but the vet ordered a regimen of antibiotics (twice daily) and topical antibiotic cream (thrice daily).  Turns out, she doesn't care for ointment being smeared on her face all day.  Who knew?

Over the weekend, I decided that both dogs needed baths and I wasn't willing to spend money on a groomer (plus, I read a report recently about animal abuse at groomers, so I used that to rationalize my spendthrift ways).  Rick usually bathes the dogs, but he was busy doing yard work and I didn't want to wait for a time when he was free.  Plus, I like being responsible and pulling my weight with the hard jobs.

Here is what I learned from bathing the dogs in the backyard:

  1. Charlie prefers to have water slowly poured over her rather than being sprayed full-on with a hose.
  2. Lucy prefers to be sprayed full-on with a hose.
  3. It takes a hell of a lot of shampoo to wash a St. Bernard/Golden Retriever (I think there's still some under her ears).
  4. My dogs didn't like the baths, but were more cooperative than I believed was possible.  I also kept them on a very short leash.
  5. Charlie will let me hold her in my wet lap while I cut her nails.
  6. Both dogs smell almost as bad after a bath as they did before the bath.
  7. Lucy is now shedding profusely.  See if you can find me through the tumbleweeds of fur.
Because Lucy's nails are tougher to cut, I take her to the vet for her manicure.  This happened last night, and pretty much par for the course when I take Lucy to the vet:  Lucy is 112 pounds of obstinate flesh and fur.  I've tried putting her in the back of my Subaru wagon -- in fact I got the car expressly to put our dogs in the back -- but she won't go in without help.  Maybe I should keep a step ladder handy.  Well, instead of breaking my back trying to get her into the cargo area, I've taken to making her my shotgun. (Dog is my co-pilot.)  This takes equally as much coercion as getting her in the back of the car.  Each look equally ridiculous.  Picture me - all 5 feet of me - pushing on the backside of a dog that is almost as big as me and I could ride like a circus pony.  I have to pick up her anxious front paws and put each one on the seat.  Still, she doesn't budge.  I push again from the back.  Her paws slide off the seat.  I put the paws back on the seat and get my hands under her haunches, lifting them with all of my body weight until she awkwardly plops in the seat, facing the driver's side, tail lolling out the door.  I push the tail under her, jump in the driver's seat, and very slowly drive to the vet (about 8 blocks from my house).  I roll down the window and she sort of likes it, but she's facing the wrong way and can't figure out how to turn around. At one point of the short drive, her feet hit the foot well and she sits like this for the rest of the ride -- backside in the seat, front paws in the footwell, head slightly out the window in an awkward slant.  Oh, and I'm completely covered in white fur.  And, I'm supposed to be at a nice restaurant to meet friends in an hour.

My life is an episode of "I Love Lucy".  In this case, Lucy is my dog, and I love her despite what an utter pain in the ass she can be.