SUMMARY: Class and successes and misses and aging and all that.
We had a lovely night in class last night, other than me continuing to do not quite the right thing--ok, all right, completely the wrong thing--and my intructor laughing in disbelief (see "what my instructor thinks I do" in Wednesday's post).
Boost ran really nicely. Knocked only one bar, I think. Got some insight into some of the times when she doesn't come in to me over jumps. Did some really nice weaves and contacts. Ran really fast.
Tika and I had some challenges. I'm sometimes feeling like a beginning handler with her now; I'm still not entirely sure whether my handling is changing as I work more with Boost or as Tika slows down or--that other thing--
Yesterday I rattled my hand in the popcorn bowl, which I hadn't touched for hours. Boost immediately got up and came into the room. Tika kept lying on the bed in the other room--right where I could see her, and I saw no reaction. From the food-first dog. I rattled it again. No reaction. Her eyes were open, but no ear twitches and no jumping up from the bed.
I asked her a couple of times if she wanted some popcorn. Still just lay there. Finally I tossed some popcorn on the floor. She immediately got up, came towards me--and started sniffing on the floor halfway across the room from where i was.
So, yes, I think she's having some hearing and some vision issues. How hard for me to accept.
But she seems to be running and playing quite happily.
We're going to do a huge hike this weekend, 10 miles with cumulative elevation gain of about 2400 feet. This is huge. It is a really big stretch for me, and I know that Tika doesn't like uphill that much anymore, and sometimes I worry about her. But at least some of it is off-leash, and I think she's much happier hiking that way.
Her future might hold more hiking and less agility. Just watching and waiting...