Sunday, May 3, 2009

Forget Winnie - Meet Hamish the Stink

Winnie the Pooh, famously self-described as "a bear with a very small brain", has competition in that field. Meet Hamish, a dog with an even smaller brain!

Cancellation of dinner plans yesterday morning motivated me to a spur of the moment drive up north to the cabin - something I intended doing prior to leaving for Africa. Wanted to pick up a favorite cardigan and some well-worn in hiking boots left here after my last visit. Dog and I plus a cousin dog made the 254 mile drive in record time and splendid weather.

First thing Hamish does when he gets here is to recreate the great migration - he races off, vanishing in a cloud of dust to: 1. roll in either elk or goose poop - which ever is older and: 2. to continue running in unfettered joy until he figures out that there might be food at home, at which point he heads back across the valley. This was the procedure yesterday and both dogs enjoyed a run around followed by early dinner.

Around 5:30 while I was loading the log carrier they romped in the meadow, occasionally checking in with me. Rana (the dog with greater than pea sized brain) alerted me to elk and I called both dogs up onto the deck and we watched a parade of around fifty elk move along the north side of the lake. For whatever reason (and I am grateful) Hamish does not chase elk - snakes are another matter. He went to rattlesnake aversion training last year and now he does chase snakes. Obviously I'm not signing him up for any other aversion training! (My daughter did sign up her afghan hound for chicken aversion training years ago - a sight hound, he would lunge on hind legs at anything feathered flying by, somewhat disconcerting when you had him on a leash - he wasn't especially bright and also attempted to catch planes).

One notch was loose in my brain - I forgot to latch the deck gate and went inside to start preparing dinner - was messing with a recipe for curried, roasted cauliflower - the curry part being important in the scheme of things as the evening wore on.

Long story short - front door burst open and Hamish raced in along with a blast of skunk - yes, the critter had been skunked! Oh, totally gross. I wrangled him into the bath tub and lacking any tomato juice (one small V8) I gave him a pineapple juice rinse followed by a ginger white tea conditioner. I will add that wrestling a water averse 42 lb all guy mostly terrier dog into the equivalent of a girly smelling spa bath is not easy, nor is it pleasant. Desperate to diminish the smell I ended his treatment with a gin rub down ( in the recess of my mind I recalled something about spirits cutting the smell - maybe they meant of the ethereal kind because I assure you gin doesn't work) .

Not to mince words, the entire place has that delicate after skunk scent cut with curry and as for my favorite Eileen Fisher cardigan - he slept on it last night! Adding insult to injury, I'm now facing a 5 hour drive home with him.
Photo from this morning when he was peering round a door wondering if he was going to be once again assaulted in the tub!

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  1. With sympathy for the obvious loss of your sweater, thanks for this hilarious picture of life with dog.

    sharonartist - (lives with a cat who tends to bring trophies home but so far no skunks thank goodness)

  2. Memories years ago of a boyfriend de-skunking his dog under the outdoor shower - dog broke loose, ran into the cabin and the door slammed. Boyfriend was left outside, soaking wet and scantily clad, I'd been sent to buy more tomato juice. Thanks for bringing back that memory!


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