Thatcher and Boden have super thick coats that require pretty constant care to keep them somewhat tamed. Ever since we first got Thatcher, J. and I found it worked best to divide duties. Grooming is my job, baths are his job. I groom them at least once a week, brushing them out from head to tail. This means fighting through the never-ending matts and dreadlocks, picking out pieces of sticks or food crusties, cleaning ears, etc. I'm not going to lie, it's a messy job. Oddly enough, both of the dogs and I really enjoy this little routine. Whenever I pull out the brushes and grooming wipes, they beeline straight towards me, wagging their tails.
Baths, although much less frequent, require even more work. We only give baths once every few months. It's not that we're too lazy, but because washing Newfies water-resistant coats too frequently will strip the natural oils away. So yesterday was a much-needed bath day. J. quickly learned with Thatcher, who loves water but absolutely hates being splashed, that the most efficient way to keep him in the bathtub is to be in there with him. Before this, Thatcher used to hate baths and it took pretty much all of J.'s power to just keep him in the tub with that scary water faucet. So J. always strips down to shorts and stands with Thatcher in the shower while he washes him. That's dedication. And it's miraculous how much this helps. Well, that and a portable shower head. Boden doesn't mind baths (this was only his second or third since we got him), and pretty much stands perfectly still the entire time he's being washed.
The best part about baths is how happy the dogs are afterwards. You will never see Thatcher run as fast as he does right after a bath. He sprints around the living room, jumping from the couch to the floor to the couch to the floor, rolling around and barking. I have videos this. We aren't able to sit on the couch until it dries a couple hours later, but it's so worth it to see Thatcher act like a maniac. Boden for some reason is always tired after baths, like they zap him of all of his energy. He crashed for the rest of the afternoon, on our bed of course, all wrapped up in the towel and snoring. I brushed them out after their frizzy hair dried, and now they feel as soft as little ducklings. I'm snuggling them as much as possible, because I know the clean, soft fur only lasts like 6 seconds, before it's once again a crusty, tangled mess.