(Photo taken at our awesome friends Jan & Dave's acreage, where we stayed this past weekend - 10 dogs, 6 people and we all get along!!)
"Teamwork Triumphs" that was the Organizers theme of this years Regionals ... I suppose that was a good motto for me and my dogs as well as many others!! Our group was amazing, and my own dogs blew me away.
This was Gyp's first time back since her last trial in September and since being diagnosed with a psoas tear in November. Well I guess all the hardwork, patience, rehabbing, treatments and dedication payed off, because she ran great. I seriously didn't think we'd be running Regionals this year - it was a longshot. We took Susan Garrett's Recallers course this spring as well as concentrated on Rally Obedience as a way to stay connected and playing together - and I think that also played a big part into keeping our "Teamwork" strong while not doing Agility. Gyp had won the previous 2 years as 16" Specials Champion and knowing she had been off for so long, my goals were to have her stay sound, and just have fun with her, and enjoy every moment - not worry about the outcome - just smile and be happy with my little girlie. That's what I did, and on day one she placed 1st in all 3 of her classes - I was so happy, more than happy really. On Sunday placed 2nd - twice and we had an off course in her Standard (not sure where we placed in that one) - which rattled me - but I took it in stride and kept things in perspective "We're here together, the outcome doesn't matter" I had to keep thinking that. I was hoping for a top 5 placement, hoping we weren't too rusty together and could hold it together (meaning I hope I can do her justice with my handling).
And well ... Gyp made a great come back and went for the "three-peat" ... and for the third year in a row is the 16" specials Division Champion.
Let's not forget about Kaleb! He was awesome too :) He ran 5/6 clean runs and ran really well all weekend - despite the lure of the pond and ducks below the Agility rings ACK! I am so proud that he finished 2nd overall in his 16" DD Vet class. He just always pulls it together and works his best for me. I am so lucky to have such loving, fun dogs - I still can't believe the weekend results, I honestly was not expecting it - but I can say my mental game stayed strong and I stuck to my guns and tried not to get intimidated by the fact that I felt sort of out of practice and not in my normal conformable groove. Once I am in the zone and warming up my dogs 110% of my focus is on them and I forget about the rest of the world and everyone else in it. At that moment is just me and them - and that is the best feeling in the world ... it makes no matter what happens all worth it.