Most dog owners are all-too familiar with the joy of having to live with the lovable dirt magnet that is canis familiaris. What they may be unfamiliar with is the covert operation I have employ to successfully bathe Maddie, the Demon Chihuahua.
(For those of you who think my I.Q. points automatically plummet because I own a chihuahua, please don't be so quick to judge with stereotypes; having big boobs is already enough for me, thanks.)
How difficult is it to give man's best friend a bath? See, I am under the suspicion that my pooch is in reality a cat that has been reincarnated as a dog, thus fueling her natural aversion to water. In any case, that certainly would explain why she feigns liking me only when it is feeding time. I don't want to jeopardize her already-present disinterest in me, but I have no choice. My dog stinks and I can't take another whiff of her putrid stench any longer.
The process to bathe her is a furtive, well-calculated one, much like an undercover scheme that you would concoct to rob a casino out of millions of dollars. My pay lies in the fact that my olfactory senses will no longer be bombarded from the mustard-gas funk emanating from my precious little military weapons grade pup.
Phase One of my strategy involves placating her with a mountainous offering of Kibbles 'n Bits while making myself appear to be of lowish intelligence by cooing like a pigeon on helium. Clapping like a trained seal may also be an applied method to encourage said target to ingest her food.
I must point out that the baby talk is, of course, a ruse. I mean, it's not like I would ever dream of finding myself addressing something adorable using cripplingly embarrassing terms because I felt like it. Oh, heavens, no.
It is at this point which I execute Phase Two of my operation. While she is distracted eating her yummy-wummy nummy-nums, I sneak away to acquire my weapons of cleanliness for the on-going war against poochie dirtiness.
Unfortunately, as with all plans in life, there is always a possibility that outside forces might foil my operation. That outside force is none other than my grandmother and her uncanny nature of asking questions to which she already knows the answer. She spots me holding the loofah and the Tick-B-Gone and inquires:
No, Grandma. I'm obviously going to bake a chocolate bundt cake from scratch and cover it meticulously with a layer of vanilla fondant and decorate it with pink roses. It is now too late for me because the Demon Chihuahua overheard my grandmother utter that one word of the deed she dreads the most.
Rather than unleashing the furor that is her rancor, the Demon Chihuahua shows mercy upon us because she has a soft spot for my Grandmother. She spares us and returns to her lair that is conveniently located at a spot where I can't reach her and refuses to come out. Even if I kneel in front of her dark cavern, pleading for her forgiveness, she won't budge.
It is at this point that I being to despair. How am I supposed to bathe her if she won't come out?
Then, it hits me. I need reinforcements. And I know exactly who should be the person with whom I form an alliance! With her years of experience, my grandmother must have a better understanding of how defeat our stinky foe. I recruit my grandmother as my ally and she coaches me in the proper method of winning the battle.
Grandma reveals that, despite her better knowledge, the Demon Chihuahua does have her shortcomings. Her Achilles' heel is "people" food, the very weapon that helped her gain the poochie's trust. In one moment of unguarded weakness, I can coax her with a slice of ham while still applying the same technique of making myself out to be a being of inferior intelligence. It's going to take cunning to outsmart the Demon Chihuahua. Cunning and cold cuts.
I know I have her once her nose wriggles out of the cave in curiosity. Her demise is eminent.
One leg comes forward, then the other to let her crawl out of her dark lair. I can see that she is torn between remaining in her safe shelter and giving in to her stomach. I eventually fish her out, haul her over to the water and bathe her, usually singing a personal rendition of "La Cucaracha" while replacing the lyrics with how great my dog feels.
Again, the singing is only a ruse; it serves as a tactic to soothe. It is not a reflection of what I feel like doing. Oh, heavens, no.
After I have lathered, rinsed and repeated on her fur, I end up feeling quite content at my accomplishment of winning the battle against my dog's grubbiness. However, I hardly get to cherish this clean, rosy moment because my triumph lasts for a millisecond. The instant I release her, the Demon Chihuahua rushes outside to roll around in the dirt, canceling out all of my hard work.
She doesn't do this because she feels too clean. Oh, no. I know she does this with the intention of spiting me. She prances in the room with an evil smile and thinks "that's for believing you could have a Weird Al career with your crappy song, Miss Cucaracha."
And so the war continues.
Barb the French Bean