Gimpy Me, First for the Toller

The first agility trial of the year!  Unfortunately for me, Thursday night I jammed my foot while running Zumi in agility and ended in what I thought was a very graceful fall.  My foot hurt, but it didn't feel all that bad so I kept playing.  A few hours later when going to bed I could put hardly any weight on it.  Luckily when going to work on Friday my foot was improved,slightly.  And a perk to training service dogs is the abundance of wheelchairs.  I'm pretty sure all my coworkers thought I was just goofing off when they saw me wheeling by without a dog in tow.

And for the 2nd time ever, I was actually entered in Team for the trial.  Meaning I had two other people counting on me and Vito to try our best and not enough time to recruit someone else.  I also found out that it has to be one person handling the dog in all the team events, meaning I couldn't switch back and forth like I could in the normal runs.  Vito has never ran for someone else in a trial before.  The last time he even ran for someone in a practice setting was several years ago and he was a bit hesitant about driving to obstacles, but cooperated as they had a ball.
Day #1 had 3 team runs and Vito was entered in only 1 non team run- masters standard. Day #2 has 2 team runs and Vito is also in 2 non team runs- jumpers and snooker.

I decided to try handling Vito in the team runs myself to be safe and experiment with a friend running Vito in the non team to see how it went.  A coworker was at the trial who Vito knows well, although of course had never done any training with before.

My first run (team gamblers) with Vito actually went pretty well.  Vito was super, super up.  I told him he needed to be nice and do a start line stay but Vito disagreed.  He reminded me that I've always said he can do whatever he wants in a trial  My foot held up pretty well, just a lot slower running than normal.

Round #2 with me (Team standard) Vito again broke his start line and had the consequence of having to do a rear cross at the 3rd obstacle already.  Vito hates rears but he made his choice!  Again he was very sassy and I was really proud of the run!  It doesn't really look like I'm hobbling, but it was definitely not my usual running!


Run # 3 (master standard) was with his friend Shenna!  Very sassy Toller!  At first I didn't think he was going to go in the ring and leave his ball (he was very wound up with someone else handling his chuck it!), but he did so good!  I'm pretty sure the off course send to the backside of the tire was due to Vito driving the line that lead to his toy.  This video makes me so happy!


The last run of his day was several hours later and Vito was a little less pumped.  Actually held his start line.  Ran steady and happy, but not super fast.  Still managed to get enough points to qualify for a team leg.

We will see what tomorrow brings.  Right now I'm happy to report that my foot itself doesn't hurt any more than earlier.  However my injury is on the top right of my foot, and all the muscles on the left hand side and up my calf are aching.  Not sure what the plan will be.

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Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.- Roger Caras

Email: lkwaudby (at) gmail.com

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