“Another morning,” thought Boo the white bulldog as she wiggled her front toes and stretched her long body into a perfect downward dog. It was early, but she soon began whining because she needed to go out — now.
Boo’s female owner, called Lisa, finally climbed out of bed and headed toward the side door. Boo followed expectantly behind, and soon the door was opened for her to race into the dark morning.
Said owner, still half asleep herself, went quickly back inside to find her glasses and slip on some shoes. Boo scurried here and there, squatted to pee in the grass, and then saw a peculiar creature. It was crawling slowly in the lawn, and it was black the same as several cats she had seen before in the neighborhood. The only difference she noticed was this one had a thick white stripe down its black back. Upon closer inspection, the creature did not appreciate her attention.
Suddenly a horrible stench filled the cool morning air, and her eyes began to burn in pain. She didn’t know which way she was going as she ran and thrashed away from the vile animal. The burning, stinking oil it had emitted hung around her face, and she couldn’t get away from it. Now she faintly heard Lisa calling from the porch, and she knew there would be dog food in her bowl if she listened to the call and went back inside. But food was the last thing her mind. She buried her face in the cool grass, and rolled her body in it for good measure. She simply had to get away from this smell.
Now Lisa was coming toward her across the yard, and Boo hoped maybe her person could help her. Lisa was clearly agitated by the smell too, even though Boo could hardly see her through red, swollen eyes.
Boo managed to eat a few kernels of dog food, but then Lisa called her up into the car and they sped away to the farm. At least Boo hoped they were going to the farm…
The farm was just a few miles down the road and where they usually went every morning. This morning, however, was anything but normal. Sure enough, they pulled into the familiar driveway, and Boo jumped out of the car to resume rubbing her sore face. Lisa gently wiped bulldog nose, face, and neck with dry towels, and then she disappeared into the house.
She came back soon carrying a strange assortment of things. One was familiar — an orange bottle of dog shampoo. The other things were a dish of red liquid, a box of baking soda, a bottle of hydrogen peroxide, and another type of soap. Normally Boo liked being washed, but today she wasn’t so sure. Besides, it was still a bit chilly outside with the sun barely up.
Lisa didn’t care, and she began coating Boo’s face and body in the red sauce. A lover of food and vegetables, Boo lapped her tongue in the dish of red and recognized the familiar taste of tomato. At least some good was coming from this!
A warm water hose — a benefit of the farm that home doesn’t have — was strung outside, and Lisa hosed Boo off until her coat was white again. Next came the baking soda mixed with the hydrogen peroxide and some dish soap. Carefully the mixture was applied around her face, and then over her wet body. One more rinse later, she got still another treatment with the orange dog shampoo. By this time she could fully open her eyes again, and she continually shook herself off to get rid of some of the water. A wet, clean, and still stinky bulldog followed Lisa up to the back porch.
Here’s the thing about American Bulldogs. They love people, and they prefer to be where the people are. If you aren’t crazy about letting your dog inside it’s probably best if you choose a different breed. They like to be part of the family, and Boo is no exception. Usually after running around the yard in the morning she is allowed inside to sleep on her basement couch or gaze at squirrels through the livng room window. Not today.
Every time she tried to follow someone inside the door got gently closed in her face. She eagerly wagged her tail on the porch, and soon Lisa came out with running shoes and a leash. They trotted along for a few easy miles, and then Lisa loaded Boo back into the stinky car.
This time they ended up at a store in town, and while Boo waited with the windows open Lisa came back with full bag of stuff.
When they got back to the farm Boo’s other owner, JR, had already arrived with Calvin. Boo has always liked her brown canine companion very well even though it’s clear he doesn’t always feel the same. Still, Calvin came to greet Boo and proceeded to spend ten minutes sniffing her from head to toe. He was finally satisfied that she was still a dog and not a skunk. It was a nice morning, and he also provided good company as they both peered through the door hoping to be let inside.
After an exhausting day Boo was glad to be allowed back in the car to return home that night. The smell had faded enough that she and Calvin got to sleep in the basement, but it wasn’t quite the same as being allowed upstairs as normal. Still, she was very happy not to be locked outside.
Several days post-episode Boo is almost back to normal. A sour smell is still faint on her face, and the poor Subaru continues to sit with windows open and fresh dishes of baking soda. One day at a time, right?
As for the black “cat” with the white stripe? Well, Boo doesn’t plan to mess with him anytime soon.