We try and keep our dog clean – for the most part. I’m not a fan of bathing a dog every week. If the dog can pass the pregnant nose test then he is fine. What this means is poor Stryder gets bathed roughly every few months unless he does something that requires bathing.

Stryder hates baths. We have a convenient walk in shower for the procedure with a tap that is roughly mid-thigh height on the wall. When we first bought the house we though the tap was useless, but now that we own a dog we think it’s brilliant.

Now, you might think we are all set and that giving Stryder a bath is easy. NOPE. WRONG. UH-UH. Stryder is a 60 lb dog. He is also fully capable of body slamming you against the wall if given the opportunity, and this happens frequently when you are in a confined space with him and he’s not happy about being there.

On Tuesday Stryder was given a bath by dP. The dog is too strong for me and it is getting harder for me to bend down. My role in all of this is to hold the shower door shut because Stryder knows how to open it from the inside. So, after a torturous 10 minutes of bathing Stryder smelled much better and was then brushed until he was dry.

The very next day it was my turn to do the evening walk. It was a fun walk because the off leash area was full of dogs. There was much running and playing and Stryder looked like a shiny penny amongst all the other dogs…

…until he found a dead duck and decided he wanted to smell like it.

It was probably a full 30-seconds before I saw what he was doing and decided to go over and investigate. When I saw the state of the duck and how much Stryder had rubbed all over his back and sides I was not a happy camper. He, however, was in heaven because he stank like dead animal. The walk home was not happy and I was scared to touch him lest the diseased dead duck somehow magically enter my pregnant belly.

Some of the other dog owners suggested rubbing him down instead of bathing him but as I walked home with a reeking stinky duck dog I knew he needed a full bath. And, because dP worked until 10pm I also knew that I would be the one doing the bathing. So… home… downstairs… straight into the shower.

The wriggly wrangley pretend bath was hell. Stryder clearly didn’t want the lovely pong removed from his fur. I finally just gave up and turned the shower on soaking us both until all the soap was gone. Afterwards he managed to escape and turned into turbo dog and ran all over the house soaking whatever he could get his wet little paws on. Eventually, he ended up in his kennel so I could waddle around and clean up the mess he made.

It took him a long time to forgive me for that tortuous experience. I’m still not over it.

Skip to Saturday. dP is at work and I am walking Stryder through the off leash areas. After a good play with a few dogs he suddenly turned and bolted straight for what was left of the dead duck… on the other side of the park. Roll. Roll. Roll. (Not my eyes)

After this little episode we tried doing a “training” session where hopefully Stryder learned that the duck was evil and that rolling in it was undesirable and the crazy woman at the end of the leash would continue to be crazy as long as he desired dead duck. Somehow I doubt it.

Straight home, down the stairs…into the shower. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. Literally.

This time I put the soap on him before we went into the bathroom and once he was in the shower I just turned the water on and let him run in circles and shake to his hearts content. Then he went outside to “air dry” in the backyard.

Looks like there are no off leash walks for Mr. Stryder in the foreseeable future.