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  #11  
Old 08-03-2012, 09:59 PM
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I do see why this would be a stress factor. However, Katie, could I be super honest? I think you might be letting the fear take a hold it shouldn't have. Coming from one young, male, BC owner to another. . .they do stupid stuff. Gosh, Blaze scrapped his leg up pretty nasty. Week later, it's looking great, fur is starting to grow back. Today, I see another scrap starting again. Right above the other. SERIOUSLY?! I just finish nursing one scrap back, and now he gets another one? It's just....yeah. As silly as it sounds, I've learned that owning a young, male, BC means cuts, bruises, dislocated toes, torn pads, etc. As *much* as you do to prevent these mishaps, they just happen sometimes. As aggravating as they are! A torn pad cost us some distance at the last Dock Diving event, but, well, it happens and we move on to the next competition.

I hope the above makes sense. I really do feel your pain. (((hugs))) Boy BCs are sooo not cool sometimes.

In the past if I've seen Blaze acting super stupid about something, what I've done is try to walk in through whatever "it" is sloooowly, show him how it's supposed to be done. Get him thinking about where and what he's doing. For instance, if it's jumping on something, I try to make it clear to him that when ya' jump, make sure allll legs are securely on what you're jumping to. Sort of like teaching the dogs a hand stand. They have to think about where their body is in order to succeed at the hand stand. Kind of the same thing I try to get through to Blaze when he's zooming through something really stupidly.

I guess what I'm trying to say is don't let fear stop you. Maybe that means take a little extra time to practice some body awareness on agility equipment like the dog walk or A-frame. If you see he's just not getting it with being careful on equipment, then maybe agility it's the right sport for him. Flyball is still in, and maybe you could try something new? Either way, you know what's best for him, and if he's a flyball and hiking dog, then he'll still enjoy life and enjoy the sport he's already into with you. (((hugs)))
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  #12  
Old 08-03-2012, 10:24 PM
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But a torn pad doesn't put your dog in a crate for five months. My dog has *no life* right now. He's either in his crate or we're doing rehab. That's it. He can't do anything fun. For months.

I don't want to do this to him again.
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  #13  
Old 08-03-2012, 11:06 PM
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For me, it's one of the hardest things about being responsible for the dogs you love.

I don't have any particular advice, though I think your approach sounds like a good one (I'm always one to try to find experts to provide advice in any situation!) but do want to reiterate that, at the end of the day, you should consider the advice of experts and make a decision that you are comfortable with and can "live" with either way.

I worry about my dogs and the situations I put them in constantly (in different contexts), but, as I keep trying to remind myself (as do others because I need reminding), I'm doing the best I can, even if I make mistakes along the way, and I can't stop doing things because I'm too afraid something will happen. Which isn't to say that your anxiety is unreasonable or baseless -- it's not -- but try to remind yourself, too, that you're doing the best you can based on how much you care about your dog.

If I were you, I would listen to the experts with an open mind and, if they tell you that agility is no more likely to cause injury than, for example, hiking, or that the increased risk is negligible, *and* you think you would still enjoy playing agility, then go for it and don't second guess yourself. If you're not comfortable with the potential risks, then stop, and don't beat yourself up for making that choice.

Lol, that was probably a lot of unhelpful babbling. Sending good vibes to you both.
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  #14  
Old 08-03-2012, 11:32 PM
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See the specialist. It will help put your mind at ease either way. It's been good to get some opinions for me about her issues from vets and then people who have the condition themselves and people who have run dogs with it too.

I STILL worry a lot with Mia though knowing she's not as sound as she could be. But it's better. I still worry that if she gets hurt I'll feel like it was my fault. But I've been told over and over again that agility is not any more likely to hurt her than what she already does (and I can't stop her from doing).

I don't think there's a right answer. If agility isn't fun because you're stressing, then stop and do what is fun for BOTH of you.
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  #15  
Old 08-03-2012, 11:51 PM
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Speaking as somebody with a special dog...
I think seeing a specialist is a great idea; I definitely think there's a difference between a vet and a sports vet who sees sports dogs routinely, and knows a lot about what they do, what they go through, and basically what they do to their bodies. I think that perspective is going to help you. I obviously have no idea what he will say, continue or stop, but I believe that will be very helpful to you to hear one way or another.


People keep telling me "oh you can keep running Auggie, he can get a PAX! They have those new masters titles now! He's only 6, he has plenty of time to get speed points, he can get a PACH!" Bless their hearts for their support and faith in my dog. But it's not about support or faith. I just know that his time is done. It makes me really, really sad to think that our times of running at agility trials together are about to be wrapped up in one last weekend, one last hurrah. I love my dog and I love working with him. I am going to miss the sport (until Payton is ready), I'm going to miss my agility friends.

But I just know in my heart that he is done. And I'm not struggling with it. I just know.

Is that where you are at right now? Are you still struggling with the decision? Because if you are, then the time isn't right. Or at the very least isn't right right now. But make sure the answer is coming from YOUR heart rather than the influence of people around you. Because it's you and your dog and nobody else really has any business in the decision. If you really, truly want to stop doing agility with him and would rather he do something else instead, even if it's "just being a dog," then don't let anybody else sway you.

See the specialist and hear him out... think it over... and you'll either know, or you won't know, and if you don't know, IMO you're not ready to call it quits just yet.


ETA: PS, even if you quit agility with him, he IS amazing and still will be.
http://susangarrettdogagility.com/20...ordinary-dogs/
This post might help you.
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  #16  
Old 08-04-2012, 12:06 AM
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Beanie quit making me cry!
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  #17  
Old 08-04-2012, 12:13 AM
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^^ Me too. That Susan Garrett post was wonderful and I'm going to save the link.
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  #18  
Old 08-05-2012, 07:44 AM
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Honestly? And this is purely me and purely putting myself in your shoes... If a recurring injury from agility meant 5 months of shitty crate rest for my energetic BC, I would be hanging up the towel in agility and looking for a different hobby.

I think the specialist will give you a lot to think about and as always, I'm hoping for the best for you and Steven.
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  #19  
Old 08-05-2012, 11:24 AM
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Well, we have an appointment for 7 pm on Friday. Hopefully he'll be able to help me figure out what I need to do.

And that's the thing RD- he burns his feet in flyball almost every tournament. 2-3 days and they're fine. And I don't *know* he'll ever get hurt again. I certainly will do as much as I can to prevent another injury, and it's not like I'm *completely* powerless over it... but when he does get hurt, it's MONTHS of complete restriction. It's not like oh, we just can't play ball or he just can't play sports. He is living in a box. And that's just not fair to him.
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  #20  
Old 08-05-2012, 03:53 PM
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Keeping in mind that I don't do agility (though I've done other dog sports in the past) I would stop doing agility with him. Since he's had two of the same injury, and both require months of crate rest, that's a LONG time for an active dog. I can't remember how old he is, but when both crate rests are combined, that's a significant portion of his life spent in a crate due to injury. If he only did the one activity, that might make it more difficult, but since he does have flyball, he's still out there doing active sports.
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