When you incorrectly map out a show before you enter, this is what happens - you end up driving a whopping 7 hours to a weekend show. Oops! To top off the trip, Mark's GPS routed us straight through the heart of Chicago during rush hour!!! Needless to say, I won't be making that mistake again!
These shows never go as planned. On Saturday, Pretzel acted like he was either starving, or he had never been to a show before, because he was wild about the bait and wouldn't stand still or hold his stack. I was a bit unprepared for that. He is always so rock-solid! So, of course, Noodle 9with mark showing her) beat Pretzel for owner-handled best of breed. Not exactly my plan, as I wanted to show Pretzel in group (the group judge was a lot more favorable for Pretzel!). The best laid plans..oh well! Noodle is so much fun to show, but her immaturity meant she didn't get a look in group.
Sunday went a lot better. Pretzel behaved himself, won his own OHBOB, and the consequently got ignored in group. Oh well, them's the breaks! We did have a fun trip, and the bonus is that on our way home we will stop by to see Pretzel's second litter, who are almost 8 weeks old now!
I stopped up in Michigan to see Pretzel's second litter. 3 girls and 1 boy. one girl is half the size of the others...so adorable. I was impressed with the nice amount of bone and beautiful heads these puppies have. Seems like Pretzel is stamping his head on all of his children. Wish I could take one for myself, but alas our house is not ready for a puppy addition quite yet.
Corky' swelling is gone, and she is putting full weight on her left hind leg! I texted that to the vet, who said that is very encouraging. Maybe it isn't a fracture at all! She is still pretty sore on her front feet, and she does appear to be a bit sore on her hind, but unlike last week she is putting full weight on it and at times is even resting the opposite leg. I am guardedly hopeful.
Meanwhile, Cadence is as beautiful and sweet as always. She was laying down when I got out to the barn today, and didn't bother to get up. I sat with her for a while. I took her halter on and off, and led her around the stall a few times, and she led willingly!
Redirect! That might end up being my theme for 2018. Don't give up - Redirect instead! I am a goal-oriented person. Yeah, that's putting it mildly. A more accurate description would be that I am obsessive about setting goals and working towards them. Sometimes, though, ya gotta face reality and re-purpose your drive into a new or different venture. Easier said than done? Well, just watch me!
The only thing more fragile that a horse: a truck.
I received a phone call this morning from the vet that x-rayed Corky last week. She finally spoke to the surgeon, and he wants me to haul her to him as soon as possible (as in, NOW). I asked if this could possibly wait until i am home from Oregon in a week and a half...nope. He thinks we need to take care of the infection as soon as possible before there is any more permanent damage.
So, I got in my truck to go hook up the trailer, and the brake pedal goes ALL the way to the floor. I get out, and find brake fluid streaming from the bottom of my truck. Damn! As if I don't have enough to stress about! After considering many options, I finally called the barn owner who owns the barn where Tango is boarded. She is a wonderful, generous person and proved it by dropping everything to get her truck and trailer out to drive an hour north to the breeding farm to get Corky and Cadence, and drive another hour south to take them to the vet hospital
Because we needed more drama, she got to the end of her driveway and her power steering went out! Luckily, she was able to borrow another truck and trailer and head on up to the farm. Friends like that are golden . I cannot express my gratitude enough!
I rode in the back of the trailer behind the divider so that i could keep an eye on things. Corky, of course, walked right in the trailer, but Cadence took some persuading. I was so stressed about hauling a baby, but we weren't even out of the driveway before she started nursing. I think the only basket case in the trailer was ME!
We got to the vet hospital, got them unloaded and settled in. The surgeon is going to look at her tomorrow and take care of her feet, and then they will stay at the hospital for the following week until I get back from Oregon.
Oregon, you say? Yep, flying to Oregon for the Weimaraner National Specialty. I am not taking any dogs, instead I am co-chairing the Top 20 competition and banquet. Yes, just another little nibble of stress on my plate. I can handle this. I WILL handle this!
I talked to the surgeon on the phone today. Good news! Corky's bone chips are not big enough nor in a place that is causing her problems. He did have to completely remove the soles of her feet to release the pressure and remove the infection. So she will be wearing hospital plates and having her feet packed several times a day. invasive, but not as invasive as removing bone chips. Whew!. Big huge massive relief. I will head up there to check things out before I fly out to Oregon.
I went to Woodland Run (the equine hospital) to check on Corky and Cadence today. I was brought to tears to see Corky walk around her stall looking completely sound! Cadence was happy to see me and receive some attention.
I spoke with one of the vets there - he was not the vet that was working on Corky but he did have some information. Corky has hospital plates on both front feet. Her feet will need to be cleaned out and packed with an iodine packing once a day for the next several months. This involves unscrewing the bolts from the plate on each front foot and treating her soles, then re-screwing the plate back on. Every. Single. Day. I have some pretty hefty decisions to make about her care, but for right now she will stay at the vet hospital for another week while I am gone to Oregon.
Her prognosis is good, but guarded. I was told to expect ups and downs in her soundness, as she will go periodically lame for days or even a week at a time while she heals. It is of utmost importance that i take care of packing her feet, and keeping them completely clean and dry (i.e. no turnout in mud or other messy conditions). This is going to be very very tough. I worry about the lack of exercise that Cadence is getting. Laminitis is also a big worry for Corky, because with so much of her sole removed she is a prime candidate to develop founder. Sheesh, I may never sleep again, with the worry I am carrying.
Tomorrow I fly out to Oregon for the Weimaraner National Specialty. Volunteering is hard work, and no one is ever really happy no matter how hard you work. I am a bit frustrated with people today, ALL people. Lack of communication, assuming the worst all the time, jumping to conclusions, not following through, the list goes on and on. But, we all soldier on as best we can. I just wish more people would think of others more often...
Call me crazy (yes, you're crazy!) but I entered an agility trial today. Crazy, because I have been gone all week in Oregon at the Weimaraner National Specialty - not to show, but to put on the Top 20 competition and banquet and to see all of the west coast weims that I never get to see. It was a complete blast! I met a lot of great people, talked dogs, and learned a lot.
Meanwhile, Noodle was running like a wild woman all week. I was a little worried because she sometimes can be hard to "re-train" after she's been doing her own thing all week. I shouldn't have worried. This girl was on FIRE! We had 3 runs, and 3 Q's. A clean Time 2 Beat run, a clean Novice Standard run (this makes Q #3 and her novice standard title!), and a 5-fault qualifying novice jumpers run!!! She was absolutely awesome. I am blowing up with pride over how she ran, and how she behaved all day.
So now she moves to Open Standard. Things get quite a bit tougher at this level. I hope we are ready! I am so excited about her future.
Unfortunately, we had the hottest day of the year today when I needed to pick up Corky and Cadence from the vet hospital. Add to the stress of my truck not behaving right and trying to stall when idling, this was a rough day. BUT, let me tell you all that stress rolled away like marbles once i got Corky and Cadence to their new home and watched Corky trot off sound!!!. She has hospital plates on both front feet, and her front feet will need to have the plates unscrewed and packing replaced every single day for the next few months. I will get this done!
There is just so much about Cadence's personality that i love. She walked right into the trailer after Corky without a second glance. She was cautious, but unloaded quietly. The trailer ride was completely uneventful, which is the BEST kid of trailer ride you can have! We got to the new farm and she walked off the trailer and followed Corky in to the indoor arena so quietly. Once I turned them loose, she ran and bucked and played...I am sure she was happy to finally be free of the stall! She met her first dog face to face today. He barked at her and she just backed away a little bit - no major fear or worry. I love a horse that is bold, yet cautious. I can't wait to see how she grows up in this next year.
Today starts a loooong few months of daily foot treatments for Corky. Right off the bat I ran into trouble. I got one screw out of her left foot, but could not BUDGE the other screws. I managed to get the screws out of her right foot, I re-packed it and assembled the plate back on. As usual, I had to call Mark to come to my rescue. He brought an electric screwdriver and managed to get the remaining screws off. The foot looks really weird underneath the hospital plate. There is a heavy rubber pad that is inserted between the plate and the foot, for cushioning. In between the rubber pad and the foot there is a piece of gauze soaked in iodine. Every day I am to remove this gauze, clean it out, and put a fresh iodine-soaked gauze against the foot. Thank goodness Corky is a model patient...stands with her foot up on my leg as long as I need it. Cadence had fun chewing on my hair while I was bent over working on the feet. Man, I love these two!
It has rained nearly every day since I got home from Oregon. Our property is waterlogged. This means the start of our house addition is delayed. It is frustrating, because I really hate to have our entire property messed up for the entire summer. I had hoped this project would start back in early March, which was our original plan.
Rainy, muddy days means stir-crazy dogs. I got my brand-new A-Frame (that I have saved YEARS for) on Monday, and I have yet to use it because of the weather.
Corky's foot-wrapping is going well. I have a good routine established, and am getting those plates on and off her feet without losing screws. OK, I did lose one, but only losing one is pretty good! Cadence is leading pretty good around in her stall. Eventually I will have to take her leading lessons outside, but for now we are working on leading small circles in both directions.
This weekend was an exhausting one - I entered both Noodle and Pretzel in a CPE Agility trial nearby. There were 5 runs each day. This means a total of 20 runs split between the two dogs. Wow!
Noodle started off the weekend with a bang - racking up 5 qualifying runs out of 5 on Saturday. She was on fire! Pretzel got 2 out of 5 on Saturday, but in his defense he is running at the hardest difficulty level and Noodle is at the easiest.
Sunday was pretty successful - Noodle earned 3 out of 5 Q's, giving her a grand total of 8 out of 10. not bad for her very first 2-day multi-event trial! I thin she was losing her brains a little bit by our last two runs, but that's OK. A work in progress...
Here was the fun thing - I had my friend Deb (who is also my agility training partner) run Pretzel in 3 of the runs on Sunday. Funny - the very first run I walked them to the entry gate and then I went and stood somewhere else so Pretzel wouldn't look for me. Big mistake - he did about 3 jumps and then ran around with his head in the air searching for me. The next 2 runs she did I stood in the same spot. He actually looked over his shoulder and checked in with me at the start of each run, then went and ran fantastic...and Q'd both runs with her! How fun! He apparently doesn't stress about being wrong with her like he does me. I wonder why he puts so much pressure on himself when I am running him. I never get angry with him, always stay positive and upbeat, but he just worries about letting me down for some reason. Silly boy, he could never disappoint me!
Today is Cadence's 2 month birthday! We celebrated today by giving Corky and her a mini-spa day. Brushing, cleaning up, and I cut Corky's mane (I had to cut the mats out) and combed through it. Cadence loved being brushed, she takes after her mother for sure! Corky would stand and be groomed all day if she could.
Later this evening I had my usual training night at the agility building. I brought Pretzel and Noodle, and my friend Deb came and ran Pretzel in a few runs. Noodle was a rock star. I didn't work her too hard since she had such a big weekend, but we did re-visit our contacts and ran some interesting courses that they had set up. It was kind of funny. Pretzel did the first two runs with Deb and ran awesome! Then i ran him in one run, and he started off good but knocked a bar and immediately started stress-sniffing. Then Deb went to run him again and he stressed the whole run. Why oh why oh why oh why does he worry so much?
Cadence tried on her purple weanling halter today. Her leather foal halter is getting too small, but this one is still a bit too big for her. We will try it again in a month!
I agreed to go to the show in Lima this weekend to help my friend show one of her two Weimaraner class dogs, so I decided to enter Noodle also. It is good to get her in to a conformation show every now and then to remind her how to act civilized. Life isn't all about running and jumping, you know!
Noodle surprised everyone (me included) by showing like a complete rock star and getting Best Opposite over two other specials (and also Owner-Handled Best of Breed)! You just never know with her. She tends to show great, but judges often don't like her because she is so immature-looking and different from the other Weimaraner bitches being shown. She is very narrow, and athletic without a lot of body. Looking at who the judge was, I should have guessed - it was the same judge that we had in Alabama back in April that put Noodle (and Mark) over Pretzel and I for best of breed owner-handled. Interesting!
In true unpredictable dog show fashion, we returned the next day and got shut out. I actually like it when the shows become unpredictable. It makes you feel like you actually have a chance sometimes.
Although we got no love in the owner-handled sporting group, I just loved how happy and energetic she was, despite the 94 degree heat. Many of the other dogs were wilting in the sunshine, but not Noodle! Dang, I just love her spirit!