The Princess Spoodle’s birthday didn’t start well today. While the old man was out playing tennis, she had one of those unfortunate incidents of a sticky dingleberry stuck to her nether regions – a mortifying turn of events to a dog of her breeding with associated sensitivities. It’s one of those situations that any parent of a longhaired breed will understand, and in retrospect, completely my fault for procrastinating about booking her in at the salon for a groom. Dingleberry removal is one of those chores that no one wants to deal with.
Not The Princess, obvs, because I couldn’t possibly publicly shame her in such a way.
Over-excited about her big day, the three of us remained blissfully unaware of her condition this morning until she dragged her bottom across my bed and left a massive skid mark across my clean sheets – evidence of what an irresponsible parent I am. And I have never seen Kurt or NC disappear as quickly.
The problem with pets is that you can’t blackmail them or make them understand that they’re supposed to know what to do in the toileting department. And although they are your child, their poo doesn’t hold the same magic power as that of your newborn’s, for instance, when you exult in the magnificence of every part of what you’ve created, even when they squirt one in your face.
Somewhat inevitably, the first thought that crossed my mind as I retched the first time was why the fuck the old man is never here in those few minutes of the week when we actually need him. These include:
Emptying the bin and recycling
Putting out the bins for collection day
Removal of any living thing that belongs to the animal kingdom yet is not human
Mowing the lawn
In other words, for all the really fought-after tasks that involve muck in the house – so getting shit off the dog’s ass definitely falls into his camp of responsibilities.
Which left me with two options: To wait for his return and in the meantime lock the Princess in a cupboard where she could do minimal damage – a suggestion that my vegetarian daughter decided was animal cruelty – or clean the offending ass myself.
So I gagged, checked the time and realized that the old man wouldn’t be back for a couple of hours, and then I gagged again as I carried Shitty Ass at arm’s length to the bathroom, questioning why I ever thought having a pet was a good idea.
‘Bet you thought you were done with cleaning dirty bottoms,’ Kurt said on our way to the bathroom – an attempt to inject some humor into the heinous task.
‘Ha ha!’ I agreed, not cruel enough to remind him of the last time he was drunk with gastro.
It was only as I dropped placed the Princess gently into the bath that we saw the cockroach in its last throes of death waiting for us near the plughole, and Kurt, (who had been pretending to be my assistant up until this time, without actually venturing anywhere close to the dog’s asshole), leapt into the air with a squeal, backed himself into a corner of the bathroom, and rocked there for the next ten minutes.
It’s going to be an interesting negotiation when he and his future wife divide up the domestic chores.
And I recognized my situation for what it was. This was a test, to prove that I am indeed what I pertain to be – equal to man – to see if I really can cope with over-sized insects that scuttle noisily and threateningly to disempower women, as well as shitty, matted bottoms with the potential of a weapon of mass destruction.
I think the Princess quite enjoyed her time in the cupboard. Hide and seek is her new favorite game. The groomer is booked for Friday.