Breeze comes from a pretty impressive family. At AKC agility nationals the owner of Breezes dad-Tracy Golden- won the 24 in class with Breezes half brother Blink. Breezes littermate Zing! owned by Gabrielle Blackburn won second in the 20 in class....Breezes Aunt Quick, and her aunt Driven have both had awesome careers. Breeze has the drive, the desire and she is so much fun to train and run in agility so todays visit to the vet was a hard one and felt just plain unfair ;-(.
Breeze was injured last summer doing weave poles and we took a very long break from the weaves- we have had regular laser treatments, chiro appointments, and lots of conditioning games. But once again it is really looking like Breeze just can not physically do the weaves without hurting herself. Even doing minimal reps of the weaves has ended up with her not able to do the weaves again. About three or four poles into the weaves she can not keep turning her back left and right to get around the poles, and she starts crashing into the poles-and looks like she just can not make it to turn before she crashes into the next pole- usually her hip gets hung up on the poles- she has bent a bunch of poles- When I see her do it it is obvious it is not a training issue but a physical issue. It might not be so bad if Breeze did the weaves slowly, Breeze doesn't do anything slow ;-).
Today my vet said that she does not feel that Breeze's back can handle the weaves and that she has come to the conclusion that this is not something that she feels is going to get better. With nine months of rest, treatments and exercise, she feels that if it was going to get better it should have had plenty of time by now. She said I could look into other treatments, or go to other people for more opinions to help but she has run out of things that she thinks will help. The vet said she feels Breeze could do agility runs without weaves ...
Of course Breezes long term soundness is the most important thing, and we have all known this day would be come sooner or later so when the vet was talking to me....I was pretty calm and agreed with her, we talked about other options for Breeze, and it all felt fine.
I got out to the car and all of a sudden it just did not feel real. I was having a hard time even thinking about it or trying to process the whole situation. I think I was afraid to think about it because I know I would have started bawling and getting home would have been hard. It had seemed we might be at this point a few times before...but Breeze has always rallied and we have had a reprieve. Breeze is just such an awesome dog to do agility with... and she loves working so much...I just wish all this had not happened to her-it feels so sad to think of giving up and moving on.
I think right now the plan is to keep conditioning her and maybe think about doing some USDAA jumpers, maybe some gamblers and just not do the weaves, maybe some NADAC tunnelers for fun and we can always do lots of tricks at home. I will take her in to get some xrays of her back although the vet said she just does not feel like they will give us any answers, but I guess it is a way to rule a few things out. My vet says that where her injury is seems to be in a place that is very difficult to isolate and exercise to overcome the weakness. I think it will take a few days of sitting and thinking about the whole situation to really accept a new plan. I know after things sink in I will remind myself that I am blessed and lucky that Breeze will be able to live a pretty normal life and is generally pretty comfortable-and she can still play, I am lucky it is just the weaves she can not do, it really could be a whole lot worse. Today it just feels pretty bad.
This was the last time Breeze was able to do the weaves, this was just last month and this time she was able to do them for a week or two before she started having problems again....It is just not looking good for her to stay sound for more then a few weeks. Watching this such a short time ago really makes it hard to really believe...