Sunday, September 16, 2012

Deja Vu

I never thought I'd say this, but maybe Corgis are just not built for agility. I used to argue with people who said such things. It was a sore topic for me. Who were "they" to judge what my dog(s) could do or not do. 

My dogs are not weekend warriors. We run and play, and exercise and train little things every day. We do agility not super regularly lately- but they are fit, and muscled. They get massages whenever they need them, and I have a great rehab vet that I trust. It should be easy to keep any dog with this kind of care sound enough to play....breed shouldn't matter.

Wicca seemed fine, it was easy to forget about all the small injuries she had over the years. Until she was one big mess. I figured her injuries were more due to her crazy speed and intensity. Pixel is gentle, and smooth, and not that quick, and certainly doesn't hurl her body around the course. She is also built much better- nice rear, great topline, the works. She should be structurally sound enough to do agility for a long time!


Regionals in June was her first injury. I had to pull her the second morning. She slammed the frame and had a very sore shoulder.

She ran a few runs at our one day trial last month. And was looked at by my rehab vet and given a thumbs up. A few little twitchy things but nothing major.

Last weekend she ran 6 runs over two days. And was great. No problem with the frame, but some weave problems. Which is not normal. So I had Sarah look at her last week. She found some ouchie spots, but worked them out. And she seemed okay.

Ran her this weekend in Medicine Hat and had an awesome first day! Great runs- fast, accurate, and working hard. Probably the best ever Jumpers run- even with a refusal it just felt fantastic. I reminded about what I love about agility. (which was amazing  to feel as I have been struggling with that!)

She ran by a frame in my gamble opening on saturday, but I thought it may just have been her being too excited, or a bad approach. And then this morning she ran by the frame again. Hmmmm.

Sarah is awesome and looked at her right away for me. This time a sore hip area (I forget with the muscle is called) and some twitchy spots on her back. And her shoulder- well, a specific muscle in the shoulder but of course I've forgotten exactly what.. She was sore enough to look uncomfortable when Sarah was working on her, and had the scared ouchie eyes even. It ripped my heart out and made me feel ill.

So I pulled her for the rest of the weekend. I will never ever, ever run an injured dog. So we hung out the rest of the day, I ran a friends dog which was fun. And now I am home and have emailed my rehab vet to make an appointment and have iced her shoulder.

I've been thinking, and talking out loud to the dogs. LOL. If this game is going to continue to hurt my little corgis then I am not sure that I should continue. I am doing everything I can to keep them healthy. But what if it's not enough. I am trying really hard to do the best I can for my dogs. But I need to be realistic.

On the flip side I can't really have them live in a bubble. She could hurt herself launching off the stairs, or jumping out of the van, or (fill in the blank).... Life is a gamble (ironic. lol)

So do I quit all together with her? Or do I keep up the training (after she is recovered from this of course..) and just enter the gambles. (she needs three gambles for her ATCHC). Get the Q's we need and then have a last hurrah? Or do I just sit on this for a bit- see what Veronica thinks. I'm probably over-reacting. I can't help it though. I love my dogs to bits and don't ever want to ask them to do something that is hurting them. I like agility. But not at the cost of my dog. There are a millon different things I could do with the dogs. But there is potential for injury in pretty much everything. LOL. That's what is so difficult about it...

I feel like I've been through all this before.

Oh wait. I have.


Jen said...

I don't think you're overreacting!

Frequently, dogs will do a thing that they LOVE even if it's not so great for them (overeating) or perhaps causing injuries. So, it's up to you to regulate! Personally, I'd say give things a rest for awhile and give her the chance to heal up. Then start again, slowly. If it's still bad, then quit. I'm not sure you have enough info at this point.

uf said...

I like corgis very much, but one of the reasons I don't have one of them is the way they're built. I need athletic dogs to do what I do with them (that includes agility) and I just don't see corgis capable of doing all that.
I'm in no way trying to suggest you're hurting your dogs, because I'vee been reading your blog long enough to know you make sure that doesn't happen.
But I think we sometimes underestimate just how physically demanding agility is. And in my opinion, certain breeds are just not built to endure a regular training and long time competing. And I don't just mean corgis.

But that's just MHO.

I know whatever you decide to do it will be in the best interest of your dogs :)

Taryn said...

I totally get where you are coming from, Amanda, esp. since Jimmy just sat out the summer agility trials and Wilson retired young due to a bad shoulder. I don't know if I will ever train another dog for agility, but I do know it won't be a Cardigan.

Dawn said...

I run corgis also, Magic does occasionally have issues-however almost always they are from the hard play that my corgis do. I wonder if its more other stuff being found when the sports play goes wrong since that is where we would notice it?
For example a couple of weeks ago the dogs were playing really hard and had a huge crash in the yard. He got up and continued to play showed no signs of injury, until 2 nights later at agility class when I asked him to jump and he knocked bars. We could see that something was wrong, I am sure the agility didnt cause it, the crash did, but I could see it at class. Does that make sense?

Diana said...

I think everyone re-thinks agility when their dog is injuried. I know I always do. Miley has been out twice for 5-6 months with injuries. And she isnt a corgi. I dont really practice a-frames anymore expect once a week at the field ( if that) because of how hard she hits the up ramp with her front end. (probably why her a-frame contacts suck. LOL) So hang in there.