Archive for the ‘Nina’ Category

Tamarack Lake Kennel Club AKC Agility Trial

Saturday, February 10th, 2018

Some really challenging and trappy courses from Candy Nettles! I accelerated in the wrong spot and caused a bar down for Nina, costing her a Jumpers Q. She had a lovely Standard Q though. Zhora doubled for QQ # 58 (2 more to MACH3!!).

Nina Saturday Jumpers (NQ):

Zhora Saturday Jumpers (QQ #58):

Nina Saturday Standard (Q):

Zhora Saturday Standard (QQ #58):

Olean Kennel Club AKC Agility Trial

Sunday, February 4th, 2018

Judge Michele Fletcher designed some fun, fast and subtly technical courses.

The dogs and I are out of shape thanks to the weather we’ve had lately, we will all be hitting the treadmill.

Poor Nina had a pancreatitis flare on Friday night, and she was still feeling a bit icky on Saturday morning. I was ready to scratch her, she didn’t even want to do the practice jump, but then her meds and her love for agility kicked in, she dragged me to the ring, and off we went for a nice Jumpers Q. A bit slower than her usual, and I was more than ready to just stop and go off if she seemed off, but other than being a bit slow, she was fine. By the time Standard came up, she was back to normal, broke her startline stay, argued with me on the table, sassy. Love that dog so much.

Zhora was slow and clingy (hormonal methinks) and pulled off the LAST jump in Jumpers Saturday. Qualified in Standard. And then earned QQ # 57 today! 3 more to MACH3! Love her!

Nina Saturday Jumpers (third place, 15 points):

Zhora Saturday Standard (second place, 25 points):

Zhora Sunday Jumpers (fourth place, 16 points, QQ #57):

Nina Sunday Standard (second place, 30 points, had to jam some front crosses in, ugly but a Q’s a Q):

Zhora Sunday Standard (fifth place, 24 points, QQ #57):

Admiral Perry Obedience Training Club AKC Agility Trial

Sunday, January 21st, 2018

…The Return Of Zhora.

She made the most of it! Turning in a perfect weekend in her first trial since early last July (other than the Invitational, of course). She was amazing, even accounting for my stupid handler tricks that nearly cost her a Jumpers Q today. She picked up QQ’s # 55 and 56, only 4 to go for MACH3!

Nina had a lovely JWW Q yesterday but Nina’d the rest.

Zhora Saturday Jumpers (part 1 of QQ #55, 18 points, third place, 4.75 YPS):

Nina Saturday Jumpers (Q, first place, 22 points, 5.36 YPS):

Zhora Saturday Standard (part 2 of QQ #55, 26 points, third place):

Nina Saturday Standard (NQ):

Zhora Sunday Jumpers (part 1 of QQ #56. 13 points thanks to my random misplaced front cross that nearly sent her to the wrong jump, I praised her for calling off it, which nearly caused a refusal…then she slowed right down because my GPS was clearly malfunctioning):

Nina Sunday Jumpers (NQ, rough angle on that first bar down, then after the third bar I say “HEY!” at which point she shouts back at me, judge Laura English said it was like she was saying “HEY YOURSELF!”, she didn’t knock any more bars though!):

Zhora Sunday Standard (part 2 of QQ #56, 26 points again, third place again, at least she’s consistent!):

Nina Sunday Standard (NQ, allergic to yellow, I caused the weave issue by praising her for making th entry):

Cover Girl Nina!

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2017

Look who’s the cover girl on the AKC Dog Agility Community Facebook page today!

Clarion Canine Obedience Club AKC Agility Trial

Saturday, November 4th, 2017

Zhora still off due to needing several sports bras. I cost Nina a double Q today but she is SO HAPPY to be back running. We got a Jumpers Q. Always love judge Candy Nettles! Thanks to Zap as always for videoing!

Jumpers (first place, 18 points):

Standard (NQ, nice run):

Tamarack Lake AKC Agility Trial

Saturday, October 28th, 2017

Nina and I have been off since the end of September (basically she got her MACH on a Saturday, another double Q on that Sunday, and then we were off for puppies). But since we’re going to the Invitational in December, which is getting extremely close, we really need to start getting back into practice. Since the puppies are still nursing a lot, I scratched Zhora, but still ran Nina. I crated out of my car and only took her into the building to warm up and run, to hopefully minimize exposure to other dogs as much as possible.

Nina was AMAZING! Over the course of her career, she’s had some periods where she hasn’t had three double Q’s in a YEAR, and she came back after 12 weeks of and DOUBLE Q’D! That’s three IN A ROW, she’s never done that. 10 year old Nina was so excited to be back she couldn’t stop bouncing up and down and barking. When we went to Sue’s on Wednesday just to at least try and remind ourselves how to play agility, she was so happy she zoomed!

This was our first time showing under judge Bob Jeffers, and I hope it won’t be our last. His courses were challenging but very fun, they ran better than they walked, and Nina double Q’d! So NO complaints!

Jumpers With Weaves (Q, third place, 4.9 YPS, 20 points, the top 3 dogs were all within half a second of each other):

Standard (Q, second place, 4.06 YPS, less than 1/10th of a second behind the first place dog):


Day 43 – The Pudgening Begins

Friday, September 1st, 2017

Zhora Day 43

So unlike almost everyone else on the planet, the camera actually SUBTRACTS weight from Zhora. In person she looks quite pregnant and round, her belly is almost touching the floor when she sits, and she is so long and lean I described her to a friend as looking kind of like a snake that swallowed an antelope. But in pictures she manages to look quite svelte still. She weighed 28.2 lbs today (her agility lean weight is 24.5), and the mothering hormones are in full swing since her blood draw for her weekly progesterone check today was the easiest, most laid back blood draw she’s ever had (she is a bit of a beast for blood draws, ask Simone). She is very content these days, happy to go for a walk (we just returned from one, in fact), but also happy to just snooze. She is snoozing a lot.

Her progesterone today was 10.2, still perfectly normal and safe number per the repro vet, so retest in a week unless something changes I don’t like. Fluctuation is normal too she says.

Poor Nina has confirmed pancreatitis (we had an ultrasound with the awesome Dr Linda Homco in Rochester yesterday and she confirmed that Nina’s insides mostly look quite healthy, but her pancreas is unhappy). She had a GI panel sent to Texas A&M last week which came back as consistent with pancreatitis, and she was painful in her upper abdomen so we were quite sure, but best to check there’s not something else brewing (I’d planned to take her to Dr Homco for a screening ultrasound soon anyway, since she turned 10, just to make sure there wasn’t anything I needed to do something about, so this forced my hand).

So she continues on her regimen of low fat food (she loves the Royal Canin one), famotidine (Pepcid) 10 mg twice daily (for indigestion), gabapentin 200mg three times daily (for pain, it’s quite painful, she was squirming when the doc was pressing on it with the ultrasound probe), Galliprant 20 mg once daily (for pain and inflammation) and simethicone as needed for gas (her digestive tract is unhappy). She seems to be feeling better and more herself today, so that’s good. She enjoyed her walk and was demanding treats like usual. We’ve been treating it for two weeks now, and the doc thinks it may have started, then started to heal, then come back, and may have been going on for 4 weeks. Poor Nina! She will get the best care.

Day 35 – Never A Dull Moment

Thursday, August 24th, 2017

So about a week ago, Nina was barfy and off her food. Took her to work and did some bloodwork, on examination she was quite tender in her abdomen near her pancreas. Bloodwork showed pancreatitis. She is considerably better today thanks to medication and a low fat diet. But she’s going for an ultrasound next week just to make sure everything looks OK (I was planning a screening ultrasound anyway, since she is 10 years old). X-rays today looked fine, and her spine is in very good shape for a very active 10 year old long-bodied dog (just one area with some mild degenerative changes, but nothing serious). Whaddaya know? Keeping them lean and fit throughout their lives actually helps! In addition to a prescription low fat diet, she’s on gabapentin (for pain), Galliprant (for inflammation and pain), famotidine (for acid reduction) and Cerenia (for nausea, it also has a mild pain management aspect as a positive “side effect”). She’s also getting Gas-X (simethicone) as needed for gas. Better living through chemistry! She is much more comfortable and seems to be feeling quite good.

And then, just to keep the rollercoaster rolling, we are running progesterone on Zhora weekly because she resorbed the last litter (one cause of resorption can be inadequate progesterone, since progesterone is needed to maintain the pregnancy). This week was our first check. Her progesterone on Tuesday was 9.6. You normally want it over 10, and over 20 or even higher is not unusual (although, some dogs, as I have learned this week from friends who weighed in to help me, do just fine with lower levels, so “normal” can vary). As this is the prime risk period for resorption (they cannot resorb as a general rule once the fetuses’ bones have calcified, which happens around day 45, although they can still lose the pregnancy), I was quite worried.

So I emailed the results to Dr Gray, and Kelly (her technician) called me back and said to recheck in a couple of days. They also said that the gold standard for progesterone testing was IDEXX (we used Antech), but I decided to take the recheck sample to their office, as they run progesterone in-house and they are familiar with their machine (plus, that way I’ve paid them for the consult too, so I don’t feel guilty). Well today’s sample was 11 ng/mL on their machine. So she’s fine per Dr Gray (who kindly commented on the results while she was on vacation), recheck in a week. PHEW!

Just for reference: they can supplement plummeting progesterone with an equine product called Regu-Mate. Regu-Mate is a synthetic progesterone that works the same way as natural in the dog’s body, but it doesn’t show up on blood tests, so you can see where the dog’s natural progesterone would have gone. You don’t normally supplement unless the progesterone drops below 5 ng/mL. Supplementing does mean that there’s a 50/50 chance that the bitch won’t go into natural labor and you may need to C-section her (of course, that can happen anyway!).

So, at this point all is well, she is definitely looking round. She is still not eating well in the morning, but is more a Lady Who Brunches just now.


Sunday, July 30th, 2017

The last time we showed to judge Howard Etzel, we had a no Q weekend. This time Nina earned her MACH, earned QQ #21 (#1 towards MACH2), and had a perfect day today! Her tally for the weekend was two QQ’s (one of which earned her MACH), two Premier Jumpers Q’s, a Time 2 Beat Q and a Master FAST Q. Her best weekend to date.

I was crying so hard when I went to hug the judge I could barely see. This MACH has been a long and amazing and educational journey and there were times I thought that we might not get there, and that would have been fine anyway!

Every single run with Nina is a joy, Q or no Q, and I try very hard to never forget to feel grateful for each and every one, thanking her for the privilege of her effort is part of every run). So very, very proud of this little dog.

At 10 years old she is running faster and smoother than ever, she loves this game more than anything, she is still bouncing with excitement at the start line, and she was a qualifying machine this weekend. This might have been our best qualifying weekend to date!

She is just an amazing dog. And I think HER favorite part of her MACH was that she got another turn to run!

Bert was awesome too! He earned his first NAJ (Novice Agility Jumpers) leg, and is really starting to get the hang of the game! He goes home in September and I will really miss him, I look forward to seeing how he progresses!

Nina Friday FAST (Q):

Nina Friday Premier Jumpers (Q):

Nina Saturday Jumpers (MACH part 1):

Nina Saturday Standard (MACH!!!):

Bert Saturday Standard (NQ, but really coming along nicely!):

Bert Saturday Jumpers (first Jumpers Q!):

Nina Sunday Premier Jumpers (Q):

Nina Sunday Jumpers (part 1 of QQ #21):

Nina Sunday Time 2 Beat (Q, bonus scritches at the start):

Nina Sunday Standard (part 2 of QQ #21!):

2017 Invitational, Here We Come!

Saturday, July 15th, 2017

My girls did it again! They are such amazing dogs and they run their hearts out for me every time, and they LOVE the agility game so, so much!

Zhora qualified in first place again, Nina in fourth. This will be Nina’s fourth year in a row being invited, and Zhora’s third in a row (she’s only been in Masters for three years).

SO proud of my girls! And huge congratulations to my BFF and training/traveling partner Sue Verbocy, who also qualified with her two Vizslas! Orlando here we come! Look out!