Saturday, March 16, 2024

“Practically perfect” – quote from Mary Poppins

  Every dog has their attributes and their deficits.  Their talents and their challenges.  You have come to know Charly’s, and that with her age these have morphed…mostly into more deficits and more challenges.  Except for one characteristic:  her poo.  It is “practically perfect in every way”.  It’s well-formed.  It’s consistent.  It has a healthy consistency.  It’s regular.  It’s predictably placed in one of three usual spots – always about a block away from our house.  Even as a senior dog!  My list of brags about my old dog becomes more truncated with every passing year, but “blue ribbon pooper” remains near the top.  (Maybe at the top). 

Thursday, March 7, 2024

Still wanted: Groomer for a senior dog (part two)

  As we left the vet’s office with Charly, the receptionist said that she’d reached out to a friend who would groom an old dog that could no longer stand.  Enter [centre stage] in our lives: “Laura”.  Laura wooed Charly with body rubs and ear scratches, then effortlessly scooped up her 23.7 kg mass and carried her to the grooming station.  Charly unabashedly folded into Laura’s loving arms and let her prop her up to complete the task in record time.  Charly was happy and she looked beautiful in a stylish fur cut.  And, I was exceedingly grateful enough to pay almost any sum of money and travel up to an hour for this to happen.   

Unfortunately for Charly, Laura moved on to pursue other dreams.  The grooming company allowed Charly to remain a client, but not for long.  No other groomer wanted or could handle having to adapt to Charly’s reduced mobility.  And Charly was not enjoying the new groomers – she was anxious.  Once again, the search for a senior dog groomer resumed…and continues.  I considered not trimming her, but she mats very easily and lays down at least for some of every walk.  The road grime is impossible to clean off her paws, especially when they’ve achieved their natural plump pillow-paw-state.


In the interim and with trepidation, I have assumed the job of dog groomer again.  But now I employ a comb between the scissors and Charly’s body for every snip so there’s almost no risk of injury.  Charly enjoys the combing and cuddling as we both become covered in fur for two hours…or she is just so glad to be rid of her thick winter coat!  Unlike Laura’s lovely fur coiffures, now Charly would likely be awarded “last in show” with her unevenly chopped exterior.  Neither of us cares.

Friday, March 1, 2024

Wanted: Groomer for a senior dog (part one)

  As a running dog – mostly on mountain trails – Charly loved to splash in the muddy ditches.  She was never on leash for runs, and had free rein to go wild and get dirty.  From a young age, Charly started going to the groomer’s so her fur could be trimmed to avoid matting and facilitate cleaning after her fun.  Once running ended, she still went to the groomer’s for trims and deep cleans, especially in the hot months.  But, when she was about 11 years old, that changed.  She was asked not to return to the groomer’s.  Their policy prohibited them from washing and trimming a dog who cannot stand for the process.  I called around to find a groomer specifically for senior dogs, but did not find any options close by.  Reluctantly, I started trimming her myself.  

I am hesitant to share this next part – my stomach feels sick about it to this day.  Charly did not like the clippers, and I was far from adept at using them.  She would only participate for a short time, but would sit or lay contentedly if I used scissors.  During the last scissor trim, I was leaning over, a bit upside down, trying to cut the undercarriage area when I slipped or she moved, and the scissors sliced her leg.  She yelped.  There was blood and a cut that was deep.  I drove her to the vet right away.  To add to my anguish, the vet cleaned the area, then brought me back to explain the treatment…thus showing me the damage I’d inflicted on my furry family member.  It was horrifying – the slice required a handful of stitches under sedation.  Hours later, we picked up our groggy old dog who cries and whimpers every time she comes out of sedation.  I deserved the torture, and Charly didn’t deserve the trauma.

Practically perfect…even at Hallowe’en

Let’s ponder OldDogBlogs “Practically perfect” from March 13, 2024 and “Brazen” from December 8, 2023.   Essentially, let’s just add them to...