Since tomorrow is Rich's 1 year birthday, I realized I have to do a catch up post before the "my puppy is awesome" post that is bound to come tomorrow.
Big things that have happened since I last wrote. I had a lovely moonlit walk on the beach with a fireman. Not as romantic as it sounds. It started with a walk at one of my favorite places, More Mesa. I've been so happy that Rich has been sensible enough to not try and go down the cliffs to the beach below, that I've really enjoyed walking along the super high, super steep cliffs. Now, it's not the safest place, but in fairness, the cliffs are sandstone, so aside from a couple really bad spots, you'd just slide 100+ feet to the beach below. I'd just taken a picture of the dogs posing over the cliffs, looked to see what I had and noticed I was missing Rich. After calling for a minute or so, I looked down the cliff and there he was, 20 feet below me and stuck. He definitely couldn't come up, so I realized the only way to get him was to go down to the beach. A nice father and son, noticed me lying on my stomach talking to Rich and said they'd stay with him, until I could get to the beach. So off I went. I knew a way down to the beach that was closer than the stairs and jumped from a ledge only to land with my ankle and side of my knee touching at the same time. I remember thinking, "that's not good", but kept going. Starlet by this time had already found her way to the beach, but Vic decided the trail wasn't safe and he wasn't budging. The father of the father/son duo showed up and said he'd stay with Vic, so off I went. I spent the next 40 minutes or so, climbing up the cliff begging Rich to come down. I made it within 10-15 feet of him, after repeated slides and so many thorns in my hands. I think the last one finally worked it's way out today (this happened before Thanksgiving). I then realized I was stuck, no reception on my phone, so Kristi started getting sent some now hysterical texts. "I'm on the cliff at More Mesa trying to get Rich." "Rich is stuck." "Well, now we're both stuck."... The sun started to go down, a super beautiful sunset and I had the bright idea to take a picture, when the ground went from under me. I had enough time to shove my phone in my pocket and turn around, then slid down the cliff. Meanwhile, the son had come down to the beach and called the fire department. The father carried Vic to the beach, where Vic started having a party, which got Rich howling on the cliff. Kristi received my texts when I hit the beach and made her way to where we were, following the firetruck. A very nice fireman repelled down the cliff, got Rich and then came the rest of the way to me.
The knee is doing much better, still not 100%. Rich was totally fine. My really good dog that day was Starlet, she was perfect.
Next big news is on my most awesome boy Vic. Truly, I don't see how I can ever have such a perfect match of a teammate again, agility is so easy for us. At the Happy Dog trial, with me doped up on pain meds for my knee, Vic picked up his 50th Pairs leg, finishing his ADCH and LAA-Platinum. It was more emotional for me than I expected, but that day, my good luck to have this amazing dog, this dog who has taken me farther than I ever imagined, all really hit me. I am so lucky. He'll finish this year Top 10 in Snooker, Gamblers and Standard, probably #14 or 15 in Jumpers. Extra impressive since we haven't shown all that much and took 2 months off after Rich's ocd diagnosis (when my fears of a super expensive surgery were peaking). Next year, I'm hoping we'll win the DAM with our awesome teammates Rosanne with Strafe and Anna with Nevian. We'll be training to do our part. I also want back in GP Finals. Of course that's 2014, which is days away and we're still enjoying a break for the rest of the year.
A couple weeks after seeing Nancy, I had an "oh, she meant that was really important" and taught Rich to line up at my side. It's been an amazing help, I'm now somewhat obsessed with him coming to heel positions and he likes the game. I don't have much video of our training, lazy on my part, hopefully I'll pull out the camera on Sunday. Before we went on break at Happy Dog, we had moved to adding an obstacle after the low dogwalk. He rarely made a mistake without the obstacle, once it was added he has been challenged with the multi-tasking. I'm still liking my plan for two behaviors on the dogwalk, but won't worry about teaching the 2o/2o, until we're done with the full height dogwalk. Here's the last video I have of us training. We've been working on his body awareness on jumps, so that's looking much better. This video is the first time he's done 20" sequencing and the low dogwalk.
Then after another fun trip to Barb's in Portland, I was having this flash that I should go on a vacation. It's been years and then I had a brighter idea, which was to take that vacation money and buy a camera. I was supposed to teach the Monday after I returned, but windy conditions canceled classes, so I went to Best Buy and bought a Nikon D3200. I love it! So, new camera and the most time off I've had in over 7 years that wasn't weather related, means there are LOTS of pictures on FB. And tomorrow Rich turns 1 year old, how the hell did that happen?( Collapse )