Wow, can’t believe how long its been since I last updated my blog! What a slacker I have been! Well I can report that I haven’t been exactly slacking off the entire time. Most of my winter has been spent doing lots of rehab with Zip. We have been walking, doing strength exercises, walking, underwater treadmill, walking, stretching, cold laser therapy and did I mention, walking? All of Zip’s doctors have been been wonderful throughout this process, giving us lots of exercises and feedback.
After slowly reintroducing Zip to all the equipment we have been given the ok to go back to full time training. The main thing I was on alert for is any soreness after our training sessions. I can happily say Zip seems to be in top form and is more than happy to be running agility again! Here is a short clip of Zip just getting back to running:
In the middle of our rehab, USDAA was in the process of selecting a team to represent the USA at the IFCS Continental Championships in Europe. The event will be held just outside Barcelona, Spain. I decided to throw our name in the hat and we were selected!! Yay!! Zip and I will be headed to Spain the first week in April! Some of my east coast teammates organized a team practice last week in North Carolina. The team practice coincided with a UKI trial as well as an AKC trial so Zip and I headed down to North Carolina for an agility extravaganza!!
We arrived on Tuesday night and had our team practice all day Wednesday. Zippy was running great on some tough courses. it was nice to be running with my favorite pup once again. My teammies were great and provided lots of good feedback. I have lots of fine tuning of my handling to work on between now and April. I found myself a little rusty on my timing of my information and how my motion was either sending Zip too wide or not wide enough. Things that seemed fine in short sequences but showed up more prevalent in longer courses. I was most happy that Zip seemed in good form. I know my handling has always been a work in progress. We ended the day with a team dinner, couldn’t have asked for a better day. Here a one of our runs from practice:
The next day we had a UKI trial at the site site as our team practice. I was hoping to get some byes for the US Open which will be held in North Carolina this year. Courses were challenging but fun. Zip did great, only a missed DW contact due to my error and one bar in a total of 5 classes. We ended up with one of the two byes we wanted. Another great day for us.
Friday morning started the first day of the AKC trial. I signed Zip up for a massage first thing in the morning. We had done a lot of running over the course of the last two days so I wanted to make sure all was well. The good news is that his hip felt fine, a little tightness in the opposite leg but not too bad. Zip’s back was pretty tight, not unusual for him, his back is always his trouble spot. Beverly was great and worked on him and loosened him up before our runs on Friday. He put in two nice runs on Friday. In Standard, he missed his DW contact and at first I was a little worried about it, not sure why he missed it. The judge was nice enough to run into me after my run and told me that he took a misstep on the DW and thats why he missed it. She knew I would not have seen it since I was in front of him so she wanted to let me know. Very nice of her to do that and I felt better about the run. Friday evening we got to run a demo run of AKC’s version of a Masters Challenge class. It was great!! I loved the extra challenges and it was great getting another crack at the DW. The weave pole entry on this course was tricky and Zippy nailed it, so proud! Here is the video of the run.
Saturday was day two of AKC, my plan was to start my drive home by noonish so we only were able to run Standard. Zip put in a stellar run, so happy to finish on a good note! Zip also had another massage appointment, his back was much improved from the previous day which made me feel better, hip and both back legs felt great. I felt like these past few days would be a good test on how Zip’s rehab was coming along. I am very pleased that he held up well and I feel good that we can continue training regularly to be ready for Spain. I am so amazed how tough my terrier can be!! He is a fighter and I am overwhelmed on the effort he gives me everyday.
We hit the road by 1 pm and we home that evening. I had a great time training and showing with my teammates and seeing friends down south I typically don’t have a chance to see in my area. I returned home with confidence and my second wind, Zip and I say “bring on the tough courses!!”