Thursday, July 11, 2019

Shedding



Coco is shedding her winter coat in great, black clumps that glob onto the living room carpet and blow like tumbleweeds under the kitchen’s ceiling fan.  Twice a day now, we are vacuuming our rugs, emptying the canister between runs, watching matted dog hair and dirt drift into the kitchen trash.

In the evenings, after work, I change into old clothes and call her out onto the front porch.  We both sit on the wooden floorboards and I pull our dollar store pet brush slowly through her wooly black curls.  

It’s satisfying and soothing all at once, the way I imagine brushing a horse must be.  When the brush is full, I pull the clumps off, gathering a growing pile to mark my progress, my accumulated success.  

Tonight, I cornered our tomcat, Blackie in the green grass and gave him a good brushing too.  He took it with equal parts purring and complaint. 

A friend admitted awhile back, after her elderly dog died, that she was elated to be freed from the extra mess – she would not be getting another dog.  I know, for a lot of people, pet hair is reason enough to refrain from ownership.  My own mother battled dog hair with a broom and dust pan, like she was battling the devil itself.

It does bother me – the hair, the dirt, not to mention the litter box’s stinking mess.  But, still, I know those few minutes each evening are some of the best of my day – some of the purest, the simplest - stroking and gathering, shedding what no longer serves. 


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