June 3, 2012

Sunday Evening Musings

Ever since the accident, I've wondered if I've done the right things for my little girl. I know you can never predict what will happen in life, but I like to think I consider all possible outcomes before trying something new. My #1 goal with Riley is for her to have a happy, fulfilling sort of life - free from pain and discomfort. At times I feel like I've failed her in this aspect, which makes me very upset. Every time she looks up at me from the couch with her big, sweet eyes I just melt and feel horrible for the condition her leg is in.

Her last day on pain meds was about 3 days ago. She is definitely limping on the leg quite a bit more, which really concerns me. I'm going to give it a week to improve and then we will take her back up to UC Davis. On top of all this, she went into heat last week so she's been super moody, needy, and generally upset about things.

I have been taking advantage of this time to work on retrieve training in the house. We started out playing tug-o-war games when she was a tiny pup, so she's learned to bring things to me if she wants to have a good time. At the same time we did tug-o-war, I introduced "drop it". I started saying "drop it" sooner and sooner after she brought me the toy, so now she will immediately release the toy in my hand on command. Just within the past week I have been putting her in a standing "stay" before she can go get the toy that I've thrown. She holds a beautiful point at the toy until I release her! I am very proud of her progress and just wish we were a little farther along on the bird side of things. Some days I get very depressed about the slow healing time of her knee, but other days she will do such a beautiful point at a bird in the yard, it just takes my breath away and I am hopeful for a moment that she has a bright hunting future ahead of her.

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