Non-Maternal Instincts

Forget to bathe the baby? Have I got a solution for you! Though necessary, babies and baths don't always click.

For instance, until an infant's u-cord falls off, parents are recommended to sponge bathe the belly, keeping the button as dry as possible. There is a cleaning regime that is encouraged, but soaking the baby in water is a big, fat no-no.

So basically baby comes out of mommy's super gooey insides (I know, nice visual), and until baby loses his crusty dead-skin attachment, baby can't be fully bathed. {Anyone hungry for jello salad?}

And any mother of an infant boy who has been, uh, well, you know, "trimmed," knows that cleansing 'down there' requires special attention until the little guy's little guy heals properly.

And when it's finally kosher (pun intended) to give sweet, little, vomity, poopy baby a real bath, it's usually in an enclosed 'baby tub' lined with a net or mesh attachment allowing baby to feel snug and secure. But the problem is that sometimes nature calls when baby is swaddled in mesh, so if you can imagine seedy, grainy, mustard-colored paste draining through a sifter, well, it's not a very sanitary way to clean God's most precious miracle (seedy, grainy, mustardy? Yep, that's newborn poop. Kind of looks like spicy dijon. Another one of God's twisted jokes, I'm sure).

And then baby grows up, and bathtime becomes fun for baby, but not-so-much for mommy. Like the time my son began playing with a squishy, cylinder toy that I could not quite identify until I realized he pooped in the tub and was playing with his own stool. That was a special moment. We really bonded that day. I cussed a lot, but we bonded nonetheless.

Or the first time my son discovered splashing and left the tub completely empty of water and the bathroom completely flooded.

And the time I had nakey baby ready to go, waiting for the tub to fill, and seconds before I set him in, he peed all over the bathroom rug.

So while my son now LOVES the bath (actually, he always has), it hasn't always been the most enjoyable experience for me.

And that is where our four-legged pal comes in. See, in the wild, mothers bathe their young. Not with a bathtub, sponge and faucet, but with saliva and tongue. But if you think I'm going to lick up all the funk that is stuck to my son by the end of the day, you must have misread the title of this meme. This is non-maternal instincts! Meaning there ain't nothin' maternal about my actions. Heck. No. I am NOT licking up anyone's funk, not even my own.

But our dog, the same one who eats his vomit after upchucking all over the carpet, doesn't seem to mind the baby's funk. In fact, I think he rather enjoys it.

You might recall this video from little man's third month of life.

What a deal! I don't have to mess with filtered feces and minor flooding, I simply let the dog do the dirty work!

And guess what? Bathtime is only getting better. Check out this recent escapade.

This laid-back mommy is in lazy town heaven! Sit back, relax, and let the dog run the show. Happy puppy. Clean baby. And water conservation at its finest.

Dear Lord,

Thank you for four-legged companions and their maternal instincts (and our pup's even a dude!). Thank you for dog saliva and a dog's apparent ability to turn bathtime into the most-fun-ever! While he's at it, I'm thinking of letting the pooch teach little man to do his thing out back, lifting his leg, squatting - no wiping necessary! Whadya think?