I have American Bulldogs. Boomer has crazy allergies from the 2 huge mango trees in my backyard, especially when they are in full bloom, like now. I keep the dogs inside with me as much as possible, but even Boomer’s minimal outside time has his eyes pink, puffy, & weepy.
Today he was so miserable that he was crying at me all day. I knew exactly what he was grumbling about; it was obvious he was miserable. He even scratched one side of his face enough to draw blood.
Sadly, this happens regularly enough that we have a night time face cleaning ritual. I fill a bucket with hot water & dip in it with a soft hand towel. Then I spend several minutes just going over Boomer’s poor, pink face with it, until the water isn’t that hot any more.
The first time I did this, Boomer was apprehensive. He doesn’t hate baths, but he’s never liked having his face washed in the shower. However, almost instantly he knew he liked the hot towel. Within a minute he had completely relaxed in his sitting position, & in a few minutes more, slowly slumped down to the floor like a puddle of dog.
Madeline’s itching is worse than Boomer’s. I don’t know what she’s allergic to, but I’ve tried everything I can think of – new detergent, no detergent, raw frozen food, different kinds of antihistamines – all to no avail.
Our vet can’t figure out what’s going on with her either; at least it’s not mange. It’s probably a reaction to something in the yard – like the grass – which I can’t do anything about. I keep her inside as much as possible, but her itching continues. I just got a new melaleuca shampoo that I’ve heard good things about & we’re going to try that.
Anyway, poor scabby Madeline also got the hot towel tonight, & she was very happy. Unlike Boomer, who closes his eyes in utter relaxation, Madeline stares into my eyes as I pass the towel over her face, & gives me intermittent kisses to show how happy she is. Madeline has a skittish personality; she has significant anxiety, like me, & is very high strung. Intense interaction like this probably makes her a little nervous, but she’s very demonstrative about being happy.
It’s a nice way to have quality time with the dogs. It also causes them to pass out almost immediately after the washing is done. Madeline still hasn’t moved from the spot; she just fell asleep right where she was once we were done.