SUMMARY: R.I.P. Risk Scannell.
Our achievements and defeats over the last two days pale in comparison to this: That a friend's Border Collie went to the start line friday night eagerly playing tug as usual, basically took two steps and collapsed, and three hours later died at the emergency clinic. Necropsy showed a ruptured tumor on his spleen. The friend didn't say whether they specified the type of tumor, but the symptoms and manifestation are completely typical of hemangiosarcoma, which took my Remington.
They reminded us to hug our dogs and appreciate them, because you just never know what the next moment might hold.
I just sent a response--
I did hug my dogs several times today, thinking about Risk. I so carefully felt the textures of their coats under my hands and the weight and warmth of their bodies next to me. Tika wasn't thrilled about that and took the opportunity to squeeze loose and go run ferociously at a passing dog to ameliorate her the humiliation, reminding me that dogs bring things to our lives in so many ways, so often not what one might want or expect.
Risk was just 8 and a half, only four months older than Tika, and one Steeplechase away from his Gold ADCH (something that Tika will never achieve)--one which he might well have gotten today, as he has become a steady and reliable competitor. And he was a beautiful dog, too. I mourn his passing, but can only just imagine what his human family is going through.
I was lucky enough to have some photos of him from last July, when my dogs and theirs played in the field after a day of agility.