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  • Beware the Ides of March

    May 11, 2015 3 min read

    Those fateful words uttered to Caesar; "beware the ides of March?"

    As with Julius Caesar, mid-March each year holds a day I don't look forward to? my kennel's spring deep clean, a process much more involved than the usual daily cleanup. Now, much of how I do dog stuff? could fall under the KISS acronym, I tend to keep it simple (stupid). For sake of example the bells and whistles in my gear bag are in fact just that (one style of whistle with a few different bell options) so it may not come as a surprise that my kennel runs are old-school gravel. Now gravel does have some advantages to composite decking or poured concrete slab (albeit few? uh? perhaps just one), but where in lacks in the ease of cleaning it does make up for in that you'll find few dogs with tougher pads or pad issues than a dog with a gravel run.

    Gravel's Achilles Heel if you will, (sorry for all these classical literary references, they just keep coming), becomes evident when the mercury drops. When a gravel run is frozen solid (and so becomes the pile of pooh perched atop), the scooper always leaves a small trace memento behind a skid mark amongst the stone. It's unavoidable. Now keep that fresh in your mind but also factor in the dust an dirt that falls off dogs during the height of bird season and the natural bedding they can scatter in order to get that bed just right? this all gradually mixes together out in the run. After about 6-8 weeks, it's time for a thorough clean up beyond the daily scoop.

    Sub-freezing temperatures can also lengthen the time between outdoor (home) kennel sanitation (you have to find that window above 32F) and March usually offers that and will usually incorporate a little more elbow grease than usual. Two products that have considerably expedited the process for me are the Wysiwash system and K.O.E. - I'm never without either.
    Wysiwash is the most thorough, simplest and fastest way to sanitize any woeful cleanup task you may encounter with a dog. This isn't just for kennel runs, but blown up dog boxes (that usually required to be rinsed with a hose- with Wysiwash it also sanitizes in that same cleaning step. An outdoor water spigot and a garden hose (to reach the area) is all you need. The Wysiwash connects to your hose and you're in business both sanitizing and rinsing simultaneously with a cleaning agent that's harsh on germs, viruses, bacteria, and organic growth (mold & algae) and safe for dogs even while still wet or damp. No worries. The solid cleaning capsules don't spill, or require mixing as mix themselves (with water flow) and last a longtime, just drop on into it's container and screw it back into the nozzle housing.
    Kennel Odor Eliminator (K.O.E) is another product that seems to contain magical powers. Anyone who's ever used it or who I've recommend it to raves at how well it works. Notice it's Kennel Odor Eliminator (not Masker), it doesn't mask odors, it eliminates them. It's all natural and it smells pretty dang good, a manly uplandish potpourri (Yes, I had to Google "otpourri'' spelling!)reminding me of Sweet Fern in the fall. I use it for more than kennel cleaning too. I dilute it more than the cleaning mix ratio and use it for the last rinse of a dog's bath, it's much better than that clean wet dog smell. With it, I've also saved a Filson Game Bag that had a forgotten, entombed stowaway with a odor to match. (soaked in 5 gallon bucket or warm water with laundry detergent and a cap-full of K.O.E good as new.)

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