Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Laugh of the day........

Sorry Elaine, you just made me laugh so much this morning, I had to share it with everyone!!!!

Dawn Weavers book arrived at Elaines!

Puppy Rae approves!

Monday, 26 October 2009

Buzzy Bear

..... Can’t remember whether I've mentioned him lately?

He’s been in the wars again!
...well, back in June he went lame on a hind leg, which sent me into a blind panic, …..weired I can cope with front legs but hind ones, means instantly cruciate, talk about panic. Well he had it x-rayed along with the other leg and nothing could be found, the cruciate was fine and he was well muscled in that area, so after week on lead and metacam...he was back free exercising and two weeks later he was back doing agility!

That was it until end of September, when he went lame for the whole of the weekend on the same leg, back to the Vets on the Monday, another lot of x-rays, she still couldn’t see anything and the cruciate was still fine, the x-rays included up towards his shoulders, just in case a disc was looking dodgy, x-rays where then sent of to Exeter to see Peter Attenburrow, in the mean time lead exercise and two weeks of metacam, the results, because of postal strikes didn’t arrive back to my vet until last Thursday, by which time he had had one week of no metacam and 3 weeks of lead walking and he was looking great, well I say great, it’s hard watching him walk whilst he’s on the lead, but he was loose around the garden and was still looking fine.
Anyway the results are copied from his (Peter Attenburrow letter)

On the ventro dorsal view of the pelvis and coxo femeral joints there is evidence of a degree of subluxation of both coxo femeral joints. This appears to be more marked on the left side (funny that coz it’s his right that he was lame on!) There is also some remodelling of the femeral head on both sides with the rim of Osteophytes around the femeral head. The acetabulae are fairly shallow and I have seen coxo femeral joints sublaxation as a problem in this breed without there necessarily being evidence of gross osteroarthritis on radiographs. Usually these dogs will demonstrate some discomfort on forced extension and abduction of the hip.
Conservative management is probably appropriate initially; if there is poor response to conservative management and the pain persists then surgical intervention should be considered. Salvage surgery could take the form either of a femeral head and neck excision or total hip replacement”

So the long and the short of it. …He’s having a course of Cartrophen like “Red” had which helped her no end and hopeful this will help him too. We won’t go for an operation, until every other option is exhausted, but the vet has assured me that lots of dogs have this type of surgery and go on to live a pain free life.

In my heart of hearts I knew this is where he would struggle, as he got older being the “very large” active type of chap he is, nothing is done slowly or with any care of his own body (just like Red, his repeat mating older sister!) sad really as he not quite 8 yet, he too is the same as Red he needs to being doing something, I certainly wouldn’t be brave enough to run him in any size!
But hey lets not write him off yet!
So, he is to have weekly cartrophen injection for 4 weeks and then monthly for 4 months and we’ll see what happens. As long as he stays sound he can start coming off the lead.
We started yesterday on the beach at Porth, he had 10 mins off the lead, he was bonkers as expected, but he is still sound to day. Fingers crossed.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

No time to be nervous.....

Before we knew it, Mindy and I where heading up the M5 to our first independent agility show, what a day! 4 runs two jumping and two agility, it was a very well run show, well done "M" and co..........and before you ask, No we didn't manage to win any, we had entered NFC so I could run in G1/G2 classes and take a toy in with me.......

Round one - jumping, she was a pain to Que, I had to ask a few people just to give her a bit of room, rather than letting their dogs sniff her bum, doesn't matter what grade your in Queing always seems to mean keep as close as you can to the next person/dog in the Que! I had decided to use a slip lead so I could exit the ring quickly when fished rather than struggling with putting on her halti, but she seemed to spend most of the time coughing and sputtering with it pressing on her throat. Anyway back to the round! 3,2,1 okay and we are off at a very "un Mindy like" speed, she was very calm, I would say she was slow for Mindy, but hey it was the first time that she has run or worked indoors, it was a nice round with just the first pole down (she took off from where she was sat!) so I threw the toy over the finish line (last jump) and off she went shaking or showing everyone her toy, I'd like to say it was a lap of honour!

Round two - jumping, went back to halti, much calmer to Que, managed to do lots of trick and waits whilst waiting our turn. Set her up, took halti off, started my count down and she was gone chasing the barking manic collie in the other ring...luckily the barrier fence was up, managed to call her back and start the course, much faster and focused (Surprisingly)

Round three - agility, not sure what really happened, but I'm pretty sure it was my handling, she bailed out of the dog walk, but was fine the second time, then went under a few jumps when they where on the turn, it might have been she was going so fast! or it was just my handling, then unfortunately she got spooked by the lovely young lad handing you the leads at the end, he wasn't much taller than Mindy, but ran across to hand me the lead, scary........

Round four - agility, she was still "up for it" Harry would have wanted his bed by now.
Much much better, did the dog walk at warp speed and I had a head start too, she still beat me to the end..... I really wanted a stop, with a quick release this time, Mindy had a different idea and thought I really aught to be teaching her a running DW, it was beautiful one, and before I could say anything she was in the tunnel turned the corner and in the weaves, and I wasn't going to pull her out the weaves, so we carried on, she went under the middle jump in a fan, Angie said, I just dropped my arm (getting ready to do the front cross and send her up the "A" frame), rest was perfect, except the last jump (I didn't want her doing a lap of honour with her toy, so had elected to have a tug with her at the end, so she just turned back to see me...note to myself more go-on work required.)

Halti = headcollar.

Home by 2.30!

She so reminds me of Red! How cool is that.

lets hope we can get a few more shows in before she's in season!

The Picture at the top, is just to keep those "family and friends" that aren't into agility, up to date with how the driveway is coming along!!

Oh and for some reason people don't believe me when I say Mindy was a different colour when she was a pup!

12 weeks-ish

4 months

6 months

11 months

and now she just "Blonde"

Friday, 9 October 2009

House work!

...Now that I'm not off at the weekends!
I can help Ian with the "House Work", the "to do" job list seems never ending, especially when your doing it yourself.....or rather Ian is, there's always loads for Ian to do! Poor chap, I just supply the tea and sandwiches and "verbal"...Well he did say I could get on the roof and clean it ready for waterproofing, but when I phoned him to ask where he wanted to put the stuff from the roof....he panicked a little thinking of me wondering around on the roof....he didn't believe I would even go up the ladder, let alone work on the roof! So he never says "you could do that for me" anymore.

So I continue chopping and pruning! taking cuttings from the garden and potting them up in the green house, now that's another story...I'm not a gardener but I love plants, haven't a clue what I'm doing, I just take cuttings and stick them in a small pot and if they grow I repeat the process! I've managed to bring on some of the most famous "Cornish Weeds" you ever did see! and some really useful ever green flowering things, which for the life of me I can't remember the name..........

Ian managed to buy some thick, sticky, stuff from Wickes to put on the lounge roof, last chance fix it/bodge it, we really don't want to replace it just yet, until the utility has been knocked down and rebuilt then, that roof along with the kitchen and lounge can been done at the same day! they are flat ones....

I did tell you all, we lived in a large shed/small bungalow didn't I? The lounge window started to leak along with the ceiling back in the last heavy rains and I was sat with mop and bucket/bowls/towels under the various places! the dogs thought it was great and kept licking the water up from the bowls! yuck. Anyway the thick, sticky, stuff has worked for now! So on to the drive, I'm sure Ian decided to do that job first, so he could have a bit of light relief playing with another toy (Oh, he does get really cross with me calling them "Ian's toys" ..."they aren't toys, they are machines to do the job, so we don't have to pay anyone else to do it Angela!")
I suppose if someone had bought this place with a bit more money than we have, they would have knocked it down and started again, but hey, they didn't and we did! Mind you we bought it for the land, not the "Shed".

...So the drive way is being done. There was parking for one and Ian had been parking outside on the verge, so the front garden will now be gravelled for two cars, although there is a garage, none of our cars will fit in it (not tall enough)

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Where did that go?........

Sorry this "post" has taken so long to write, I just didn't know how .....or want to write it!

Well 10 years on ......... Red has just done her last full height competition..........From this wee small pup we picked up at 7/8 weeks old, from a sheep farm at the end of the M42 Tamworth, who was destined to fly out to Spain to become a sheep dog, but they never sent the deposit! ....more fools them I'd say, as I truly believe what ever job Red would have done she would have been good at......Thank fully she choose agility with us......Well Ian really.

She was to be Ian's first agility dog and to join Cass and I plodding along in elementary, She was mad from the moment we bought her into our home, she tore down curtains, poo'd and pee'd everywhere, ripped up cushions, bedding, barking (I would now know, how to handle this kind of dog....I think!) ..........a very difficult dog to train, she had her own ideas, a dog that over the years has taught us such a lot about dogs, training and what fun life can be. She screamed at any dog gathering, lunged, snarled and snapped, everything she did she did at 100 mph....we hadn't a clue how to help her (she was only our second collie) after almost a year of various training classes, with various people, she was almost ready to start competing and then the bomb shell........ Ian decided he couldn't cope with her and didn't want to be stood in the middle of a ring with a judge watching him being bitten by her or worse still leaving the ring to charge across and out of the ring to chase another more exciting dog in the next ring! ....Yes she did that with me too! I still have the scares to prove it........on my arms mainly! We have improved!

Her first show was in the year of the foot and mouth - 2001, was meant to be in the March but it was the end of May...can't remember where it was Tumbridge wells may be, something like that (up country) but funny enough I remember the round she got a clear in starters/novice jumping and came 15th out of 200 dogs! her second show was supadogs where she won me out of Elementary by coming second in starters agility, her fifth show she won Starters agility at Golden cap with Sally Jones judging (end of June - ish)

Picture: Starter agility win. Do you recognise anyone else in the background?

She then won her first ever run in an intermediate class, agility with Graham Partridge judging........then there was a blur of wins until she reached Advanced at the grand age of 3! ...She qualified and competed at Olympia in 2004, in the days when it was only senior dogs and you got possible two/three days up there, we where lucky enough to do the pairs and power and speed, as well as the main event, Red qualified I think twice or was it three times for Crufts, but only competed once....... due to lameness.
What a journey.......She took us to many champ finals, our highest place being a third....that was those days when you didn't even get a Rosette/trophy unless you won the class, so we have only our memories........
..........and at 10 + she's still as mad as she was in her younger days, she has calmed down enough now to play with her mates near (ish) the ring, which is lovely to see, her boyfriend list is getting longer, her first love was and is MoJo, Janet and I always laugh when we watch her trying to get him to even acknowledge that she's on this planet! She loves to chase the squirrels in the woods and any ones cat that dare ventures into our garden, she loves to roll on our freshly made bed! her favourite toy is her watering can, which she made her own many many years ago! She now loves to come up on the sofa for a cuddle.

Yes she can still do the height and yes she can still beat some of the youngsters out there, yes she did get a place at the weekend too, on a great course of Mark Laker's (I had seen who was there and decided to hold her "A" frame and Dog walk contacts) she didn't put a foot wrong, I wish Ian had been there to video it, it would have been a lovely run to re-watch. I was glad no one stopped me on the way back to the van after her last run, the tears.........but seeing her suffering in the evenings after an agility day, I feel I need to look after her as she wont look after herself, she has always been one that would rather crash a jump than put in an extra stride etc. I'm sure some of you will wonder, why I don't continue with her until I see her not coping ......I don't ever want to see her struggle or measure a jump, so watch out anysize here she comes.

So it's veteran's and anysize for her next end of an era.

What a 10 year journey we've had together....Thank you Red. I love you.

She will continue herding the leaves and fluff around the garden! guarding all the fledglings that fall from their nests, she will carry on listening for the mice in the grass. She will still be able to do bits of agility at home on flowy courses, in safe surroundings on medium and small heights. Knowing Red she will want to join in with the others, learning some new tricks over the winter too.........

.......Oh gosh, I had better go and sort her out, she has just chucked all the toys out of the toy box and is running around, with Buzz in tow trying to get the sheep out of her chance Buzz! Chuckle, chuckle.

Wow that went so very fast! Enjoy every moment with them guys, it's over far too soon............