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Pearl Gets Pawsitively (groan) Polished at Unleashed

The tubs are roomy for large dogs at Unleashed.

I must admit that after taking a trip to Turkey and Greece recently, my summer has slipped quickly into monotony.  This is truly sad given that I live in such an amazing city in the U.S.  My only excuse is that my daughter is taking a class in the afternoon four days a week and it really screws up the schedule.  After school, it’s back home to make dinner.

Ho hum, I know.

On Sunday, though, I was in a state of panic because I wanted everything in my environment to be clean, and because everything in my house, the cars and the yard is filthy, I focused my attention on the one thing that could be cleaned without too much hassle — the dog.

Pearl does not like to be clean and she’ll do whatever it takes to make sure that she gets right back to stinky, smelly and gross as quickly as possible.

What I dislike about bathing Pearl (besides how much she hates water) is having to lift her and put her into the tub.  It’s back breaking because she weighs 50+ lbs. and although I have been going to boot camp, I still can’t easily lift her.

The other things about bathing our dog I don’t like is how dirty the kids’ bathroom gets, and how humid it is while bathing her.  The bathroom becomes a sauna so I end up with sweat beading above my lip and across my forehead thereby making my hair damp.  Going out into the world after bathing Pearl is not possible so if I bathe her, it means I’m in for the day.

We use about three towels to dry her off which means that those three towels have to be washed and dried separately because there are usually too many hairs on them to go into the washer with anything else.  Besides, I don’t want Pearl cooties on the towels my family uses.  Ewwww.

As you can see, I needed an alternative.

When a friend told me about a self-service pet wash in Bressi Ranch, I knew I had to go check it out.

My husband, one of my daughters, and I loaded Pearl up in our minivan and set out in search of Unleashed in Bressi Ranch.  Because it is so close to Trader Joe’s, I had seen the sign for Unleashed before, but because it’s not close by, I had never been inside the store.

Walking into the store, we were greeted immediately by the friendly cashiers.  They asked us what we were looking for and told them we were there for the self-service pet wash.  A store clerk took us over to the pet wash area and opened up the back of the tub for Pearl to walk in.  How nice — no need to stoop and pick Pearl up.

After Pearl entered, the clerk put the door back in the stainless steel tub and provided us a leash to attach Pearl to the tub.  She explained that it was for safety.  I can only imagine what would happen if you had a reluctant bather escape and run all over the store leaving wet paw prints everywhere.  Somebody say slip ‘n fall?

While we got Pearl all hooked up, we put on our aprons and the clerk came back with two clean towels, shampoo, conditioner, a comb, and a brush.  She explained that we may have to wait for the water to get warmed up but that it would be comfortable for Pearl after a short wait.  She made sure we were all set up and knew how things worked before she left.

My husband and I began the task of wetting the furry bather down and getting her all soaped up.  Since we were not limited in the amount of shampoo we could use, we used a lot!  We rinsed her off, then applied conditioner — something we definitely don’t do at home.  I’m glad we had the aprons on because one of us usually got sprayed.

The air-conditioner in the store kept us cool as we worked tirelessly to make sure our Pearl sparkled.

After a wash, a rinse, a conditioning treatment, and another rinse, Pearl was ready for her toweling off.  I am glad we were given two towels right off the bat because she’s a big dog.

I lifted the door to the pet tub myself after we were done.  Boy, it was kind of heavy!  Glad to know the equipment is solid.

In the end, we had a clean dog and by default, a clean bathroom at home — all this for only $10.  The clerk cleaned up after us and nobody in our party was sweaty or even a bit damp.

All-in-all, it was a fun outing (although I don’t think Pearl liked it, but she is the only Labradoodle who doesn’t like to get wet) and I would definitely take her there again.  For now, though, she still smells as fresh as a Daisy!


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