Thursday, 20 September 2007

A coat of many cullers?

Oscar, my beautiful Beardie, is very high maintenance. He is eighteen months old now and fully grown. His enormous fluffy pale cream puppy coat is slowly being replaced by a darker grown up jacket. But even if I do say so myself, he is drop dead gorgeous by anyone's standards. He is a big gentle lion with the softest eyes and an impressive turn of speed.
Luckily for me Anita Bax, former International Dog Groomer of the Year, rather handily lives just around the corner. So every two weeks he goes in to her home-based hi-tech salon at 9am and she beavers away sometimes to 6.30pm to restore him to gorgeousness. One day in fourteen he looks like a stuffed toy, well for a good half an hour of it at least. People who don't even like dogs want to pat him in that brief window. The rest of the time only immediate family members can stand the muddy paws and the stinky beard.
I could probably stop him getting filthy by stopping him mixing with Tess, our madcap Springer Spaniel. But life would be very dull if we did that. The two have such adventures together. But I have to say, much of what they get up to is not witnessed and we can only piece it together from the forensic evidence.
Anita recalled her assistant complaining when she got stung by a nettle secreted in Oscar's undercarriage. "That's nothing," she retorted. "I found a dead frog in his coat last time!"
A dead frog! In a dog? Is this a first? It was for Anita.


Graham, Prince & Tilly said...

I couldn't stop laughing at the prospect of finding a dead frog in Oscars coat!

Dogs will be dogs I suppose....

Chapstaff said...

Are Beardies' coats really that high maintenance? I had no idea.

I love the dead frog bit.......hahahaha

I wonder if that is the strangest thing ever found in a dog's coat...

Beverley Cuddy said...

He has an profuse coat - if I were showing I would probably be delighted at the tremendous volume, texture etc but it is in reality as impractical as me wearing stiletoes and designer clothes. Neither of us were built for looking smart all the time.
When the two dogs charge around Tess rushes through the undergrowth and then Oscar follows and then I do. It can take hours to untangle him from trees and bushes!
If he were a proper working sheep dog he'd have lost all this fluff or been stranded tied up to a hedge!
I figure - If I'm daft enough to buy a dog with a coat like this, I should keep him looking gorgeous as possible even if I can't put the graft in like other dog owners who have more free time.
I don't have an hour a day to spend brushing him, so it's either Anita or the clippers!
Thank god for Anita!