I've just taken Penny for a walk with my sister in our favorite park in Melbourne, Darebin Parklands. If you've never walked there you should try it. There are some areas where it's necessary to have the dog on lead to protect the native wildlife but it's possible to walk a circuit that lasts about forty minutes. It includes swimming holes for the dogs, grassy hillsides to romp and chase balls and winding bush paths amongst the native vegetation. Here's a link to the park's wonderfully informative Darebin Parklands website.
The ranger has been spraying in the park recently, along the creek. Of course, just as we were leaving Penny decided to roll in the poisoned vegetation. So we decided she needed a bath asap.
I've been thinking about buying a dog hydrobath for quite a while but I wasn't sure I wanted to spend so much money. However, I've decided I'm going to do it. I've just finished washing Penny and I seem to have used half a bottle of shampoo and conditioner, as well as seeing litres of water go down the plughole. That's not to mention the wall-to-wall water everywhere after she jumped out unexpectedly and raced around the house to get dry. Liz, Jabari's 'mum', showed me one day how to use a hydrobath and I was amazed that it only uses a bucket of water and very little shampoo. I think it was only something like a teaspoonful.
I'm going to contact Melbourne Dog Centre to see how much it will cost to have a hydrobath delivered. I realise it will be costly but it might be worth it in terms of water saved and also in saving time spent kneeling on the bathroom floor and bending over the bath to wash Penny.
Penny looked gorgeous after her bath tonight. Before that she looked like 'Harry the Dirty Dog'. He's a character from Gene Zion's book of that name. Harry hated having a bath but learned his lesson when his human family disowned him because he looked like 'a black dog with white spots' instead of their dog, who was 'a white dog with black spots.'