His Fluffiness, River

River is our male akita. A member of a very hairy breed, this dog has always been extra fluffy. It’s not just the sheer quantity of fur, or the length, it’s the thickness of it that’s incredible. There are places in River’s body you cannot get through that fur and find skin.

Akitas blow their coat twice a year. Blowing their coat simply means they turn into hair-dropping machines for weeks on end. Tuffs of the stuff falls off them in clumps, long hairs drop everywhere and join groups to make tumbleweed-like balls around the house. They drop so much fur that I often wonder how they don’t end up bald. But they stay their furry, fluffy selves. The floor, however, is covered and I run around with my vacuum like a mad woman during those times.

Over the years, River’s coat has gotten thicker and harder to clean. We’ve increased the washes, but we couldn’t get through the fur to the skin underneath. The problem was that neither could fresh air. So his skin stayed wet and created infections.

One visit to our vet and a series of antibiotics later, River’s skin was back to its happy pink and no longer irritated. But antibiotics could only do so much. His fur had to be combed and parted so the issue wouldn’t return. This could only be achieved through a professional groomer.

We worried River might not like the groomer, so we gave him some gentle sedation before he went, but we didn’t need to worry. The soothing bath and relaxing massage that went along with the spa-like treatment were right up his alley. River loved every minute of the grooming process.

The best part, though was the result. After wards, River’s fur was so soft, it was almost like touching down. Touching him was a delight on the senses. It was like caressing a puppy.

I’ve taken pictures, though I’m sorry to say they don’t actually show just how fluffy and soft he is. Still, to a picture is worth a thousand words. Take a look at his fluffiness, River.

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