Posting days: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.
On Monday I give in to the demands of decency and hoover the whole house. Well, let’s be honest, where the art room is concerned, this involves only the visible floorspace which isn’t extensive. Nevertheless it’s a marathon. I polish furniture too.
I gaze in awe at the decluttered hall, the unhairy red rug in the back room, the clean covers on the futon, the unblemished stretch of kitchen floor. Mmmm. Nice.
Oh. Something white and very hairy lets itself in.
Its tail and torso are soft and clean. But its lower legs and feet are absolutely filthy. Caked in mud. Clotted lumps between its toes. Jagged spikes clinging to its heels.
I’d been debating whether or not I’d need to wash her feet. Perhaps a gentle wipe would be enough.
I look at the floor again. I look at Isis. I pop her into the sink and get out the shampoo. I wash each foot and leg until the water runs clear. That’s a lot of rinsing. But surprisingly, she is very good. Apart from a scrabble when she finds herself in the sink and a little low growl when I pick up her ‘biting’ foot, she is very co-operative. Not so long ago she’d have bitten that foot if I’d tried to touch it and probably bitten me too.
When I recounted Hairy One’s first bath to Friend -in -Wales, she said I could have been bitten and she hoped I’d taken precautions. No, I hadn’t. It didn’t occur to me that Isis might bite me. Nor does it on this occasion. And she doesn’t.
Thank goodness it’s dry enough for Isis to be outside for most of the day today. I watch her through the window. She chooses a squeaky toy to play with instead of making herself a stick. She squeezes the toy over and over again. It’s not squeaking anymore but this doesn’t seem to bother her. I think she likes the feel of the air fuffing into her mouth. She drops the toy, picks it up again and circles the garden with it. That’s progress. Well done Isis.
Isis came from the Aeza cat and dog rescue and adoption centre in Aljezur, Portugal. For information about adopting an animal from the centre, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or www.dogwatchuk.com