Lu’s recovery: phase 3

So this photo has nothing much to do with anything except that she looks like a dork who is rapidly going insane. Which is actually pretty accurate.

So this photo has nothing much to do with anything except that she looks like a dork who is rapidly going insane. Which is actually pretty accurate.

I’ll dub this phase the: Seriously, why can’t we run around now?  phase of her recovery.

Which is to say, she’s very much fine. Too fine. I now have a fully recovered (as far as she’s concerned) working dog on my hands who hasn’t stretched her legs for nearly 3 weeks. Which isn’t to say we haven’t been on walks. We have. But they’re walks, on a lead, for only about 20 minutes each time.

I am now seeing the dog I would have, if I wasn’t incredibly active with her. It looks like this:
Chasing the cat

Picking up any contraband and carrying it around (hand lotions, socks, paint brushes)
Trying SERIOUSLY HARD to engage Mal in a game of keep-away when I wasn’t looking and they were in the backyard together.

Some super awesome speed and amounts of eagerness when playing with little handling bits on the flat (I have to get this energy out somehow!). I love this- this can stay!!!

Getting into everything (more than normal)

Lots of bouts of barking at random stuff (cars driving by, people’s voices, when the people in the music were going “YEAH!”)

Chasing the cats.

Breaking out of her dog fortress room by smashing the baby-gate when I wasn’t home.

And just generally being a pain in the butt.

I don’t know what happens when stitches come out. I seriously hope the vet is all like: Yeah she can totally run around and jump now (not agility jumping, I get that I’ll probably have to wait another couple of weeks to start this again) and just build up to long walks and don’t throw the ball too much… at which point we’ll go WAHOO!!! And race to the park and let her and Mal have a good long romp together. And maybe I’ll take the tunnels down and so some high-speed tunnel games.

But more likely he’ll be all: “Just keep doing gentle exercise for another week, then she can have short runs” to which I’ll look at him and reply: “You realise she’s a working dog, right? You know, one of those dogs that people recommend get an hour of exercise daily? Gentle exercise is NOT cutting it!!”

The area around her incision is still hanging down weirdly – a vet friend said there’s liquid in there that should go away on its own but I don’t know if it’s getting better. Possibly she’s meant to be doing less exercise than she is but I seriously think she’ll go on a rampage if I try and keep her calmer. The only things keeping us both sane right now are the short little handling games we’ve been playing (and part of that is celebrating everything, or, incorporating another wrap around the lawn-chair to try again, so she’s not wrong, ever. It’s fantastic. I need to remember this when we’re back to sequencing (and it’s so logical, but you just forget in the heat of the moment) – if she messes up do the next obstacle you see and reward her, or do a loop and come back to that part so you can try again. But better would be to do the next obstacle I see or can get to and reward her, then try again. Cos then, she never fails, but she still gets another chance to try again especially if it was my fault for handling that something didn’t work. So, little handling breaks are awesome, our short walks are pretty good, and our shaping sessions are very handy too, though there’s only so many tricks we can do, so that’s the challenge. She’s getting very good at putting a spoon in a bowl and a bowl in another bowl and I’ve been working on getting her nose under her paw for ‘shy’. This is a hard one!

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6 thoughts on “Lu’s recovery: phase 3

    • Em says:

      Oooo, yes! Well, heeling is another one of the tricks I’ve been working on. Might have a look into those stations again and see which ones need work. 🙂

      • We have really enjoyed Rally as a way to bring a bit sanity into the world. Have somehow got through to Excellent and managed to DQ in our last trial by walking rather than jumping over the broad…. with the judge also being an agility judge too that we know quite well so a bit of a laugh in the ring. The backward heel is a good one. The advanced level call to front and return to heel left and right are also good. A hint…. also try returning to the right rather than the left side… handy when you go to do the German turn from OMD. German going right to left was we actually found pretty easy as it was like a Rally or Obedience return to heel so then just spent a bit of time on the flat doing a “return to heel… but on the right”. Hope this helps with ways to keep Lu out of trouble and the cat safe.

  1. She does have a crazy look on her face! Poor girl, but it sounds like this break could actually be a good thing for agility. Hang in there, she’ll be able to run soon 🙂

    • Em says:

      Hahaha, well I was trying to get her to look alert by throwing a ball of paper at her, so she was getting ready to catch it, but she is SO crazed and intense. It’s awesome and I love it so much – we were doing some heeling and Rally-o stuff in the kitchen and she cracks me up with her heeling. I must get a video of it because it’s way too adorable, but everything with her is SO full on right now. It’s awesome, I don’t want it to go away! Definitely looks like longer breaks are the way to go with her in future, and I do think it will be a really good thing for agility. Now that I know how good it’s been I might actually be able to take a break instead of saying I will but then sneaking down to do a DW or something 😉

      • Hehe I bet it will make it easier for you to take a break in the future, yes 🙂 Java is also going stir-crazy without agility. Poor Ruby is getting “attacked” much more often these days 🙂

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