Sunday 10 May 2020

Bathing Betty

Betty doesn't really like water, she never has - although she loves the beach, she's not keen on going in the sea....she might have a brief paddle in the shallows, but if a wave comes she runs away from it.  Streams she'll go in at the edge where it's shallow and have a drink, but doesn't plunge in or swim, unlike her frenemy Poppy the spaniel, who dives straight in.  It's just as well Betty's not keen on deep water, as brachycephalic dogs aren't really supposed to swim in it as they may have breathing difficulties.

She's not keen on having a shower or bath either - I put it down to husband drenching her with the hosepipe (and thus freezing cold water) when she was less than a year old.  We did try washing her in the bath when she was young (our shower is an over the bath one) - she hated it and fought tooth and nail to get out, so we didn't try again.  She's always gone to the groomers ever since, the local agricultural college has a dog grooming section with a proper salon, trained and highly experienced staff and eager students, young and older, who all love dogs and want to be groomers.  It only costs £10 (an absolute bargain) for her to be thoroughly brushed, washed and dried and have her nails clipped.  She's not awfully keen on going, although the 2 staff love her and say she's as good as gold, and she's always very pleased to see us when we collect her.

We generally take Betty every 6 weeks, so during lockdown she's now missed 2 sessions, as obviously the college is closed right now.  She is decidedly smelly and dusty, so this morning we decided we must wash her.  We did it in the garden, tied her to the washing line and used warm water and doggy shampoo and then towelling her off afterwards.  She didn't like it much but we did it quickly and without fuss, talking to her calmly and reassuring her.  She was surprisingly well behaved and we didn't even get that wet!  Afterwards she ran round the garden shaking herself vigorously, I gave her a couple of treats and then she sat down beside me, pressing herself right up against my leg.  She's now laid out on her blanket on the sofa, sleeping it off.

Her claws need cutting too, I've never done it before.  I bought a pair of clippers with a guard attached, to prevent cutting too much, they come with instructions and I've seen the groomer and the vet do her claws several times, so I know what to do.  It's a case of taking my courage in my hands (literally) and getting on with it, and Betty letting me do it!  Twice now I've sat down beside her to do it, she sees the clippers and takes off like a rocket.  Oh well, we'll get there eventually, I won't give up.  Best to catch her whilst she's sleepy and docile.

It feels quite muggy right now, cloudy with sun coming and going, forecast to get much colder and windier later on this afternoon.  I wonder what Boris will have to say this evening in his update to the nation....mind you, he's only on for 10 minutes so it won't be a lot!


  1. It's funny how some dogs love water and others hate it. Our Collie Lucy used to walk round puddles and would sulk for hours after a bath.
    Good luck with the nail clippers - not an easy job.

  2. Sounds like you did a good job with washing Betty. Never had dogs, but one of my (sadly gone now) cats could sense when you were going to put the spot-on flea stuff and made a quick exit! Good luck with the clippers. You can do it! xx

  3. Oh such a lovely post, look at her laying there without a care.
    Had to laugh when you said whe scarpered when the clippers came out, lol

  4. Well done - maybe she's outgrown her early fears. I had to laugh about the clippers though - good luck with that one.

  5. Husband puts the lead on ours, hooks it to a post and she doesn't complain at all now. He doesn't trim the back ones usually. So , it doesn't take too long. Don't pause or hesitate, do it matter of factly. He normally bends over top her and works on each foot, quickly.AND a treat after wards.

  6. Been there, done that! My husband is slow and particular about the bathing and clipping which makes me more anxious than the dogs! 💖

  7. Hi hun , Ahh bless her! Our Bella Boo (boo) is a choc lab/retriever and loves water so we don't have a problem with bathing her.If anything whilst walking down flatford (near to us)we have to stop her from jumping in the river or any sea we are near! *hugs* Goldensunflowerx


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