It is actually a shower right? Not too many dogs take a bath anymore; I mean honestly can you imagine soaking your dog in the tub? Having two poodles I cannot imagine it; they are like giant sponges and they get the squeegee routine before being allowed to exit. Of course the squeegee is my hands; not a real squeegee (weird word eh?). Always starting at the top; the first run is down the back, then down the sides, each leg gets the squeeze and finally the feet. After squishing all the water out of their body and legs it is amazing how much remains in their feet. After all of this they are allowed out; which is out the side door to the outdoors. This is where they do their shaking and sprinting around; then they get towel dried.
Yesterday I gave Jessie and Tilley a shower; for Tilley it was the first since she was struck by Vestibular disease. I thought it was going to a rough go; she is still so unstable on her feet; but she did great. After her shower she went outside (it was over 80 here) and did her shaking. Her shaking started off shaky to say the least; not a great thing to do when you are in a continual state of crooked. But soon she got the hang of it and did short shakes; not like the normal full body shakes that dogs do after a bath but it did the trick.
Typically the dogs dive onto the lawn and flop around like a fish out of water; this didn't happen with Tilley yesterday. But she did hit one of the dog beds that are outside and flipped around rolling all over. She then had a burst; you know the burst that all dogs get after they have a bath? She looked like she was going to have a run and she did; albeit sized down, but she did. It was great to see her so happy; she even did a couple of spins and came out nicely at the end of them. She looked so great that I ran and got the video camera; so I will try to get some of the videos up here soon.
Then the big decision was to blow dry her or let her drip dry. It was plenty warm enough to drip dry; the big difference in the two is for a future groom or not. If I blow her out she is all fluffy, straight hair, and soft. If she drips dry she is covered with tight curls; still soft. I opted for the drip dry; poodles don't get matted when they drip dry into tight curls and she was loving her time out in the warm sun.
Shower time can be a great time for bonding; it can be used as a time to build trust. It is also a time when you can go over your dog's body really closely. It is important that you make sure everything is feeling and looking good on your dog and many are so coated that you simply can't see them properly unless they are wet. I've also discovered that using my forced air dryer is a great chance to have a look at their skin. Any other time it's nearly impossible to see it all.
I try to make shower time as enjoyable as possible; heck who wouldn't want a full body massage while warm water pours over you? Hmmmmmmmmm.