Monday, September 24, 2007

Busy, Busy

This weekend was super busy, and seemed to fly by!
Saturday we had the Daycare Grand Opening which was lots of fun- GoDogGo did an agility demo and all the dogs did great- we don't do demos usually so it was a first for lots of people. There was lots of yummy food, and drinks...and the weather was perfect.
Saturday night I packed up the dogs and my stuff to head to Natalies for a week to dogsit while she's on Holidays- in NEW YORK. Lucky Girl!
Sunday was the Go Dog Go 2nd Anniversary. It is hard to beleive it has been two years already. I remember how uncertain we were at first- and now we are so busy we can't keep up!!
The party was lots of fun and everyone seemed to have a blast- we did a mini tunnelers course (Vito did it too and he rocked!!!) played Musical Mats, Weiner Dunking- where Jane, the reigning champion was beat out by first timer Sadie the fox terrier! And we also did some fun relays where the people had to weave and then we just hung around eating and visiting for the next hour, it was great to see all the dogs having a good time- even the new dogs who had never done any agility managed the tunnelers course just fine! The only downside was that it poured rain all day- so we were forced indoors but the daycare held us all just fine!
This week will be a busy one aswell but I will try and get some new pictures of all the beasties up- The ones in this post Wendy took last week at the daycare.

This week Sam and I are going to Calgary to see Margaret at the Canine Fitness Center- our appointment is on Wednesday. And then I have an agility filled weekend- Friday a seminar with Kathy Keats in Calgary, Saturday and Sunday an agility trial in Medicine Hat. It should be a fun weekend, hopefully the weather will be good!!!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Feeling Better

So I have had a few days to digest the recent change in Sam's diagnosis and I am feeling better about it.  I have talked at length with Margaret from the Canine Fitness Center and will be seeing her on Wednesday. I am going to exhaust all other options before surgery. I will keep you posted.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A reallly bad day

I think that today has been the worst day in the history of Sam- I have finally gathered my thoughts enough to put into words what I learned today and where we go from here.

I went to calgary today to the western specialist veterinary clinic where I saw Dr. Fowler. His initial exam made him doubt that it was a cruciate, and later after xrays he says that it is very unlikely that it indeed a cruciate. He asked his colleague- Dr. Romedious for her opinion and she agreed with him that it is not a cruciate problem. So I ask myself what would have happened had I gone ahead last thursday with the cruciate surgery the vet here wanted to do??? I am going to call him tomorrow and ask just that.
So now on to the bad news,
Instead of a cruciate he thinks that Sam has a herniated disc in his lower spine. When the disc is out of place it causes nerve damage which can show up in lameness. He has advised that I get a spinal CT done (for the fabulous cost of 3000) and if it is indeed a herniated disc there will be surgery to repair it. For the lovely cost of 2000. I was too stunned to ask many questions, but have a list a mile long now, so will be calling tomorrow. I have googled herniated discs in dogs and have found many, many sites to sift through. The ones that I browsed through quickly do not leave me feeling very well. Dr.Fowler said that the surgery is risky as the nerve damage could be permanent, and when they are removing the disc there is a risk of further damage to the nerve ending. And then there is the whole "how did it happen" Sam has been a hopper always- and has had a roached back- always. So it could very well be just him- a conformational defect. In which case this could recurr again and again and again. I am devastated. I can't even think straight and I really need to get this figured out. My poor boy is in rough shape tonite due to the anesthetic which makes me feel even worse for him. Why do I put myself through this. I really love him and just want him to be okay. But I fear that isn't going to be possible, or at least not for a long time. This is the saga that seems like it will never end. All because I saw past the funny looking white headed dog and saw only his spirit and smile- I couldn't say no.

I will post more as I find out. Hopefully it is not as bad as it sounds. Maybe I am over-reacting. I can hope can't I?

~Amanda Labadie
Kate (retired)
Sam CGN ADC and Baby Vito

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Sunday, September 16, 2007

A relaxing weekend

The dogs and I had a great weekend. It was the most relaxing weekend I can remember in a long time. Saturday morning I did agility, finalised an adoption (yay!) and then headed to the Old Man River Provincial Campground to camp overnight with my parents. We had a blast. I had 6 dogs in the tent with me overnight!!!

We got there in the afternoon and the dogs spent the rest of the day swimming in the river. Well, except Sam. He got a yummy bone to chew on in his crate- he hates water anyway so in his mind he wasn't missing out on much!

Wicca and Kate are fetching fools and Vito did his regular bark and splash on the shore, and Drew found s good stick to chew on. It was very beautiful there and the weather was great. I had a grood visit with my grandparents, and really enjoyed myself overall.

This morning more swimming for the pooches, and a nice long walk.

What a great way to spend a weekend!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

A Bad Day

I am trying hard not to be too stressed about Sam and things, but yesterday was a pretty bad day. I was supposed to take Sam on Thursday to have surgery, instead I cancelled the appointment, and am now trying to get a referral to a specialist in calgary. I am really hoping that I can get in soon and that it is not going to be more than two thousand dollars. I found myself pretty close to tears a few times today and I am not one to be emotional like that so I was annoyed, which just made it worse. Ugh.

I do think that I am now on the right track and I am not even sure why I am so uptight about getting it done NOW. What is a few more days in the whole scheme of things right? I have talked to a lot of people in the past day. I posted Sam's story to all of the email lists and forums I belong to, and have had a lot of feedback. From the agility group over and over again people told stories of how wonderful TPLO was. From the cardigan only goup I heard about how just crate rest, or even the trad surgery worked for them. And the Ortho group of course had mixed opinions, depending on who you talked to. It is nice to know however, that I am not alone and that many others have had to face this same thing.

Sam had a good day yesterday, I left him home in the morning and my dad picked him up and brought him to work around noon so April could do some TTouch on him. Vito played at the daycare all day- Molly Brown is there for three days this week and he and Vito LOVE each other, it is very cute. The daycare has been the best thing for Vito- he is far more friendly and receptive to dogs now, and has quite a bit more energy. Wicca came with Sam for half a day and I took her to class lastnight to work on a few things. She was pretty good- we worked on weave pole entries and contact to tunnel things.

Fall is coming up quick and I am slightly depressed that it is dark by 8:20......

Monday, September 10, 2007

Kimberly AAC Trial and the beach


We had a great time this past weekend. Sarah and I travelled to Kimberly, BC to an Agility trial. The site is so beautiful! I LOVE the mountains and really enjoyed the whole weekend. We stayed at our friends who has a gorgeous little acreage.

Wicca was so good all weekend. She is really doing great. We Q'd in our first run of the day- Steeplechase and we only knocked TWO BARS the whole weekend!!! So out of 7 runs we only knocked two bars, which is pretty freakin' awesome for wicca! We had some really great runs and our jumpers run was amazing. It felt so perfect. We had one off course, but it was smooth and lightning fast. I am thrilled with how she is running lately. Vito was great and got to visit alot. Sam stayed at my parents house for the weekend (you can read about his weekend on his gimpy dog blog) Now I have two weekends where I am not doing much, Sam's surgery is scheduled for Thursday, and I'm getting pretty nervous about it...

On the way home we stopped to give the dogs a break and found a great river for them to swim in. They had a blast and Sarah got some great pictures! Vito mostly ran around on the beach part but Wicca was a fetching fool and had a great time!

All the pictures on here were taken by are all the great pictures of my dogs!!!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Happy Wicca

Here is a cute pic of Wicca- just saying Hi!!! I hope to have new pictures of the whole gang in the next few days so I can put them on the header....stay tuned :)

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Sam the famous Gimpy Dog

Well, in my effort to make some extra money I set Sam up on Cafe Press- it's pretty cool!
Sarah made a really cool logo that I initially was just going to use as tags for the agility leads I am making, but it was too cute not to share with the world! So check out Sam's Cafepress page
and, I (well, Sam) have started a new blog- all about Sam and his cruciate. I am planning on keeping a record of his surgery and recovery...I will post pics too, don't worry none to gross.
I thought it would be a good way for me to "get it all out" so to speak. Anyway, you can check out Sams' Gimpy Dog Blog here-
You can also see the items I have for sale on the blog too- not the cafepress stuff- but the agility leads, tugs and other fun things!


Monday, September 03, 2007

Kestrel Ridge

Yesterday we went to one day of an AAC Agility trial in Calgary- it was held at Kestrel Ridge Farms and I must say it is one of the most beautiful trial settings I have ever been to. In 2004 the Regionals were held there- this was before Wicca was around and was actually the worst agility experience I ever had with Kate.

Anyway, Wicca was great. She had some Wicca moments of wildness but overall was great. Our first class was Masters Gamblers. She nailed it- it was jump into a tunnel under the dogwalk, over the same jump again and then up the dogwalk and over a jump. Wicca was the last dog in the class and over and over again I saw dogs bite the tunnel- Wicca was the only dog to Q! I was SO proud of her- she listened well and although didn't hold her contacts as well as I would have liked I was still beaming!

Next class was Advanced Standard- I over handled my dog and made things much more difficult than they were and sent her over the jump the wrong way...I was pretty annoyed with myself. The rest of the run was just weird. I was off, and Wicca was off. She went out of her way about 3o feet away to take a was just weird.

And then came Team- we had a wall issue- Wicca apparently forgot what bottom means. We fixed it and also had an off course.

Jumpers was the last class of the day- it was awesome. The course was pretty easy but had lots of weird angles- I had planned to do three rear crosses as I knew I couldn't get there for a front. Wicca was amazing. We ran it in 24 seconds- fastest in the class by three seconds. We knocked one bar (on a turn) and otherwise it was perfect. She handled great and I did a good job too!

Overall it was a great day, and it was nice to go just for the day. Next weekend is the Kimberly trial which is my all time favorite. It should be lots of fun...and maybe, just maybe we will get a Q in snooker....
(which is all we need for our starters game title. ) Everyone else in the world needs team Q's for their AtCh- I on the other hand will need Snooker Q's- I just know it.....Snooker is not our game!!!