Bathing my Pyrenees and Several other Steps to Insanity
It always starts innocently enough.
Eli was slowly pouring milk into his bowl (the red plastic one, per his request) to cool his tomato soup. His grilled cheese was on the stove, my spaghetti squash reheating in the oven.
There was a rare knock on the door. Landscaping company...winterize the sprinklers...check and check. I wasn't expecting them, per se, but I recalled Jason contacting them earlier in the week.
Lingering chemo-brain has severely inhibited my ability to multitask, but so far I felt like I had this. Let the dogs in so Mr. Landscaping doesn't get eaten by them, and don't burn Eli's grilled cheese. Okay.
As the dogs came inside, I noticed Ruby was dripping poo from her fluffy white haunches. (Why oh why is it always the white water-hating fluffy Great Pyrenees that gets filthy?)
This must be the moment Murphy and his Law looked upon us in amusement.
Mr. Landscaping knocked again, both dogs began barking like we were under fire, and Eli spilled the entire remaining contents of his milk under the table.
I threw a couple towels on the table as I crossed to the door, and hoped Ireland would make herself useful licking up any milk Eli didn't bother cleaning up.
Naturally he was in hysterics because his pants were wet with milk.
After going outside to unlock the gate for Mr. Landscaping, I was left to decide between mopping up milk, changing Eli into dry pants, or cleaning poop off Ruby.
Poop it is.
I distracted Eli with the grilled cheese sandwich.
As for the milk? Seriously, Ireland, earn your kibble, girl.
At this point I feel the need to point out that I have never given Ruby an inside bath before. Two scrub-downs outside with the hose have proven she is not a fan of being wet. I was able to coerce her into the tub (she slept there her first night home with us, so I knew she'd be willing to get in). But as soon as I turned on the water, she shot out of there like a cannon and tried burying herself in the corner under the shower curtain.
Going to need heavier artillery.
I managed to wiggle my way out of the bathroom, and in the kitchen armed myself with a banana (her favorite) and a bowl of peanut butter (a trick I learned from my Great Pyrenees group, just wait for it).
Unfortunately I wasn't as smooth re-entering, and Ruby was out the bathroom door and down the hall before I could stop her. Once she realized I had a banana, she was willing to follow me back. Back to almost-arms-reach of the bathroom. Almost. But not quite. On top of that, the banana-peanut butter bribe had gotten Ireland's attention.
Our little bathroom can barely hold 1.5 people. Me, a Great Pyrenees, and a Great Dane? Nope. Not your party, Ireland. With a little trickery, I managed to close her into the girls' bedroom across the hall. I gave Eli specific instructions to let her out as soon as Ruby and I were closed in the bathroom.
I spread the bathtub/shower walls with the peanut butter (there's the trick I mentioned) and lured Fluffy Pants with a trail of banana.
Come hell or high water, this dog was getting a bath.
A few minutes later, Ruby was thoroughly soaked and lathered, when Eli screamed through the door, "I have to tinkle in the potty!"
Of course you do.
No amount of peanut butter to lick off the walls would keep Ruby in this bathroom if the door opened. I managed to convince Eli to use the master bathroom (something he often does by choice, anyway).
More water. More suds. Rinsing, rinsing, rinsing.
"Mommy, I had an accident! Mommeeeeeeeeeeee!!"
I could not.
"Eli," I shouted, "just take off your wet clothes and wait for Mama."
Ruby capitalized on my distraction and jumped out of the tub.
My first thought...okay, she's like 97% rinsed. We'll call it good.
My second thought...oh, holy floodwaters I need All The Towels! Her fur held a lot of water. A lot. I used the towels I had ready in the bathroom, and needed still more. Naturally this meant letting Ruby out of the bathroom, and chasing her around the house with those additional towels.
I give myself a C, at best, for dog-drying efforts. But let'sbehonest, I still had a pee-wet toddler wandering the house, milk drying to the dining room floor, and Oh yeah! Spaghetti squash in the oven. Whoops...toasty. Plan B for lunch, then?
By now Mr. Landscaping was gone. I briefly considered that he may have needed me to sign invoice or something.
I found my son crouched on his bedroom floor, damp pants and briefs around his ankles, playing contentedly with his dinosaurs.
"Thanks for being so patient," I said, as I peeled off his wet bottoms. "Where was your accident?"
I can live with that.
I left him to play a few more minutes while I sanitized the bathtub and cleaned the bathroom floor. Then I drew him a warm bath, and ate a turkey sandwich while watching him play in the water.
At some point, I heard the unmistakeable clatter of Eli's red plastic bowl hitting the floor out in the dining room, and I knew Ireland was once again helping herself to table scraps. Tomato soup...I can only hope she emptied the bowl before she knocked it off the table.
I toweled off Eli, dressed him in warm, dry clothes, and turned on his favorite movie. I surveyed the dining room for damage. No signs of tomato soup.
Just an empty red bowl.