Sunny takes a bath

I did think while I was doing this that you would enjoy
pictures, but really, it takes at least two hands to give a dog a
bath, and setting up a camera, tripod, and remote control while
you’re doing it would make it even more too much work than it
already is. So you’ll just
have to take my word for it that we both looked wet, and he looked
miserable.

Sunny and his cousin Monte both got fleas while Monte was
here. Monte’s seem to be clearing up from the Frontline flea and
tick stuff, but
Sunny’s just seemed to be getting worse, and I got a good look at
the infestation yesterday when Sunny was rolling in the grass in
the sunlight, and after that it made my skin crawl just thinking
about it.

So I decided he probably needed a flea shampoo in addition to
the monthly flea and tick stuff.

People at the dog park have spoken well about Laundramutt as a place to
give your dog a bath. They have tubs the right height and give
you aprons and assist you getting the dog into the bath. But when
I called them, they said they weren’t interested in helping bathe
a dog with a flea infestation.

I stopped at the pet store on the way to pick up the farm share
and picked up some flea shampoo. I took Sunny out in the back
yard and tied him to the fire escape and turned the hose on. The
internet instructions suggest wetting and soaping the neck first,
so that the fleas don’t just go hang out around the ears and eyes,
which you’re going to be trying not to get shampoo in, and then go
back and feast on dog blood. So we did that, and then wet the
rest of him, and soaped him, and rinsed him twice, and then I
toweled him off and took him inside and blow dried him.

He spent this whole process looking martyred, and clearly
wondering why I was torturing him, and the rest of the day feeling
miserable because he smelled wrong and his mommy didn’t love him
any more, but he seems to have mostly forgiven me today.

He’s normally a pretty clean dog, and any bad smells he picks
up seem to be temporary. I’ve dealt with skunk smells with a
sponge bath. The only time I resorted to a hose was when I first
got him. He’d spent a month in the shelter, so he had a pretty
strong disinfectant smell, so I hosed him off but didn’t bother
with shampoo. So this is the first real bath he’s had since at least 2000,
so it’s obvious that he thinks it’s not only cruel but also
unusual punishment.

But he’s nice and fluffy, and doesn’t seem to be scratching
anything like as much. He is shaking his head more than usual, so
I probably got water in his ears, or maybe a few fleas took refuge
there. But the flea population should be down to the number that
the monthly spot of stuff can handle.

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