Lisa's post over at Boondock Ramblings--- about the eye-watering stench of one of her cats-- reminded me of my four-legged friend, Fritz.
Now Fritz was a past landlord's dog, a large and cheerful white terrier. Because he traded on looks over brains-- (that dog made Goofy look like Stephen Hawking after a couple of cups of coffee)-- Fritz was the lovable idiot you just felt compelled to pet.
The mental negligence I understood. That was from one too many concussions. Each day, I would leave for work where Fritz would race me to the metal gate, and skid out head-first into it.
Each evening, he would see me returning home and do the same.
You had to admire his enthusiasm, if not his coordination.
But the smell, now that was a mysterious phenomenon that simply hadn't made it into the Natural Wonders list yet.
And it wasn't one I would notice right away, no. But it would sidle up-- an aroma of pure, unabashed, eternal, deep-radiating, primeval Dogocity. The kind that would wrap its yellow-green tendrils around the ol-factory senses... and hump the heck outta them.
It didn't matter if he'd just been to the groomers, either. Fritz would return all fluffy white, trimmed and joyous, a clean bandanna slung jauntily around his neck. And a brief affectionate pat on the head would leave traces of a gagging canine stink that multiple hand-washings, handiwipes, sandpaper and sulfuric acid would not remove.
Now Fritz's mother, Henrietta, lived down the street. She was an outside dog, calm, mild-mannered and grateful for any speck of attention anyone gave her.
And, one day, it occurred to me that Henrietta might serve as a decent control group to test the Fritz Foulness problem. Was this mysterious Puppy Putrescence something to do with the breed, the family line, or just Fritz himself?
I was determined to find out!
So as I approached the lady dog with my daily greeting, it was this time I paused. And petted...
And, um, sniffed. Deeply.
It occurred to me later that anyone watching out their windows might find it a little odd to see someone stop, play with, and then sniff someone's dog.
They might consider it equally strange to see that person leave, energetically sniffing their own hand and making mental notes of it.
Ah, but much out of the ordinary must be done in the name of Science! We didn't see Alexander Fleming recoiling from penicillin and crying, "Eeew! What's that green stuff? Gross! Take it away!"
No. He said, "Hm! Jolly! Someday people will be over-medicating with this."
And I learned something important from my little experiment, too. I learned that the all-weather female, four-wheel-drive model of the great Fritzmeister was completely odor-free.
Now, I haven't expanded the experiment to other terriers of this type, because, well, I got bored.
Also, I have sinus problems.
Also-also, I don't want to be known as "Crazy Dog Sniffer."
But I think it's reasonably safe to say that the problem was uniquely Fritz' own. Was it some gland issue? Some evolutionary glitch? An unfortunate designer dog signature fragrance choice?
We may never know.
If only it could have been used for the powers of Good. Harnessed in the right hands, I believe Eau de Terrier Blanc could have reshaped today's on-the-ground warfare. Concentrated and formed into exploding capsules, the enemy would be rendered completely incapacitated for miles. And nobody would ever have to get hurt.
I'd say there might even be a Peace Prize in that!... (And hey, we've seen those things handed out for less.)
Pass the handiwipes.