Sunday, November 4, 2007

The Latest Style

This weekend, I competed Travis at the 4 Paw Agility Club trial. He did very well. He earned his 29th double Q on Saturday (11 more to go), a first place in Jumpers on Sunday, and 53 MACH points for the weekend. He didn't qualify in Sunday's Standard class because he missed the contact zone (yellow) on the dog walk. Otherwise it was a beautiful course. He's just running very smooth and consistent this year. Sometimes it seems like the Qs are so few and far between, but this has really been our year.

Katie continued to amaze everyone with her progress. It makes me feel good to hear people notice the improvement from just last weekend. It is sometimes harder for me to see because I'm looking at her everyday. For those of you who have not seen her since before the injury, I don't think you are even going to believe it really happened. I think most people would not notice a problem right now and only someone with a good eye would see a bit of a hitch in her stride. She still gets herself into trouble sometimes and can't move the left leg like she used to. She still can't go down stairs on her own or have free access to our tile and hardwood floor covered house. Although she is pretty happy being relegated to the ex-pen. She is the only one getting a rawhide chip, bully stick, or Greenie each day for jail time.

Today, Lou Avant (borzoi person and vet) loaned me some purple bells to put around her ankles. They matched her purple collar famously and Katie turned heads as she jingled all the way. I have to admit I felt pretty silly and would shout out "Its rehab!" to anyone who was staring at us. The purpose of the bells or the scrunchies are to remind her to use her feet and to encourage her to exaggerate the motion of the leg. I think I'll stick with the scrunchies. At least they do not make noise and attract attention.

Our other rehab exercise is 15 minutes of caveletti work. I actually use the boards from my obedience broad jump and just turn them on their ends to create a 7 - 8 inch high jump. Katie, of course, wants to jump them, but the point is for her to slowly and deliberately step over each one and to again exaggerate the motion of each leg, but especially the left hind leg. This is quite boring, but I try to keep Katie entertained by giving her her a treat for stepping correctly over a few boards. She has caught on to the idea. She puts her head down and gets to work.
Look at those rear legs working hard!!!