Monday, May 3, 2010

A Day at the Spa

Not for me, but for my other half.  Not just any spa, but a mobile spa.  We have taken our dogs to various groomers in the area over the past 11 years and so far we haven’t really liked any of them.  There is always something that they just don’t do right.  When we first adopted our current dog, he arrived at our house straight from the groomers, within a few hours, we had discovered about eight ticks on him, some as large as raisin.  I think that is something a groomer should have noticed.  The other groomers in the area have been steadily jacking up their prices over the past few years and now the price doesn’t match the service that you get.

We decided to try out a mobile groomer for the first time today.  We have seen them in the neighborhood a few times and figured if the neighbors trust them, it’s not such a big gamble.  The groomer called just before she arrived.  When she got here, the dog and I answered the door together.  The groomer approached slowly, hands out with palms down.  She let him sniff and investigate, and she petted behind his ears, i.e. they became friends instantly. 

The groomer noticed his advanced age and said that since he was older she would help him into the van.  I just smiled, knowing that an open car door is all he will need.  I was going to mention that she didn’t even need the leash but figured she would find out soon enough.  She attempted to lead him over to the van, but he quickly took control and lead her around to the open door, jumped right in and sat down, like this was something he had done 1,000 times before.  I think he gave me a parting glance as the doors closed behind him, but he might have just been looking around for something to eat.

According to the groomer, this is the treatment:

  1. Massage to relax him and prepare him for grooming – yes, a massage, I just assumed it was a fancy word for petting
  2. Brush out
  3. Cut
  4. Shampoo
  5. Conditioner
  6. Towel dried
  7. Blow dried
  8. Brushed out again
  9. Teeth brushed
  10. Nails clipped (painting is optional)
  11. Eyes cleaned
  12. Ears cleaned
  13. Cologne
  14. Non-Bret Michaels Bandana
  15. Treats

It took almost two hours.  Two hours of me looking behind my chair every time I had to back up, pausing at the stairs for him to race around me, glancing around every time I spoke (he thinks I am talking to him), etc.  When the groomer came back to front door, she looked to have all of her limbs attached and in the right places and she was smiling.  Our dog isn’t dangerous and he isn’t wild, but he is strong enough to pull me off my feet and I saw him snap a 2 inch tree branch in half with his teeth in one bite just yesterday.  He is also a bit over 90 pounds and I can’t imagine what it was like with him cooped up in a van for 2 hours.  I get drenched giving him a bath in the driveway and I get to stand 5 feet away. 

The dog was also happy and handsome, he looked 5 years younger and 20 pounds lighter.  She said he behaved very well and that he was very healthy.  She said she would definitely come back again when he needed his next haircut.  I began to wonder if she had a few tanks of nitrous oxide venting into the van.  I almost asked if she worked on humans too, because I could use a haircut, but I was afraid of the response. 

Once all the excitement wound down, the dog inhaled his lunch and took a leisurely bathroom break, he resumed his position behind my chair for the rest of the afternoon.

His breath still smells faintly of rotting fish, but you can’t have everything.

Before (the camera failed to capture the pungent odor of decaying anus emanating from between the black lips an inch below his nose):

After (happy, clean, pleasant scented guy sporting a badass black bandana):

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