28 June 2012

Trial in the heat, starting tomorrow

I'm excited to be back trialing this weekend, but not excited that the forecast is for 95F (35C) and humid and sunny all weekend. We are not trialing outside, so that's good, we won't get too sunburnt. however, we are trialing in a big canvas building with no air conditioning and poor ventilation.... better than outside, I'm sure, but not "cool" in any way! The building gets hot and feels "stuffy". I knew this trial would be a risk that way, but I need to get running in AKC in order to get both Kiba and Strafe qualified for AKC Nationals. Kiba has only been to a few trials in this qualifying period, and Strafe has been to a few more, but he started in Novice in December, and was off for half the spring due to my travels with the older dogs. So no skipping this weekend due to heat, we're just going to sweat (and pant)! I have fans and a shade cloth for the car, they will get better airflow there than they will inside the stuffy building.

Luckily I didn't enter any extra classes, just standard and jumpers each day, so less chance of overheating and *bonus* - FAST runs first each day so I don't have to be there super early. Which is good, since the commute varies between 90min and 2 hours, depending on traffic.

Oh, and I have definitely decided that Ryze is not an easier puppy than Strafe after all. Ryze, at 6 months, has suddenly entered a teenage rebellion stage. When he does something I don't like, and I yell at him, he may stop, but he may not. He may sit down and glare at me. He may run the other direction! He's a bit of a brat, and he's feisty! I've been saying that because he's a sheltie, I prefer a tougher sort of temperament, but my gosh, he is not really soft at all! He is more like Drifter than my other dogs - he sort of looks sad when I yell sometimes, but as soon as he knows I'm done, he's right back at it again! He even wants to bite the grass just like Drifter when we're out on our morning walk, which aggravates me to no end... he's a wild man alright! As of last week he was still holding at 15.5", so I'm pretty sure he'll stay under the FCI cutoff unless he decides to throw in a very large, late, growth spurt. So I'm beginning to relax a little regarding height! I would love him to land right at 16.0", since that puts us in the right height class for every organization in which I compete - USDAA, AKC, and assuming we made the team, also for EO, WAO, and FCI purposes. If he goes over 16", he will be too tall for USDAA and probably for WAO as well, unless he is just barely over 16".

Kiba's back and shoulders have remained tight this week, so I have been spending 45min or so each morning massaging, stretching, and lasering her carefully. She really enjoys these sessions, and I think she will be OK to run this weekend. She is not limping, and I'm pretty sure nothing is "out" chiropractically. She's just tight in her back and shoulders. I will definitely warm her up and cool her down properly, and keep an eye on her though.

Picture, for picture's sake! Love this one!



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