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Back on the Circuit and Jumping for Joy

Before Robin’s injury occurred he was on track to finish his CPE agility championship (equivalent to the AKC MACH). He needed a total of 100 qualifying scores (runs with no mistakes and under the standard course time). By October 2010, he had earned about 80 of the 100 Q’s. After the injury we really doubted he would ever be able to continue to compete and were happy that he could just walk.

From October 2010 through March 2011 Robin did no agility. He continued to go to Dr. Suzanne Walski for acupuncture therapy. During this time, as Robin’s hind legs strengthened he was really bored and seemed like he wanted to do SOMETHING. So instead of agility, Robin competed in Rally and Obedience classes where he didn’t need to jump. He finished his AKC Novice Obedience (CD) title, his CDSP Open Obedience (CDX-C) title and continued earning triple qualifying legs for his APDT Rally Master (ARCHMX) title. That kept him busy for a time but whenever he went to agility trials with our little beagle, Merlin, he would bark from the sidelines as Merlin ran his course. By spring of this year Dr. Walski said Robin could return to agility on a limited basis. We took him along with Merlin to a Teacup agility trial. Since the equipment is much smaller and the courses are shorter, we entered Robin in a couple of simple classes with no contact obstacles, mainly just tunnels and a few 8” jumps. He was so happy to run that he finished the courses well under time with no apparent problems. We continued to let him run a few more classes at subsequent trials but we continued to avoid the A-frame. Robin continued to regain full strength in his hind end and ran better than before the surgery.

On August 27th of this year Robin finished all the requirements for his CPA agility championship (his CT-ATCH). It was a day packed with emotion. Many of the other competitors knew of Robin’s surgery and were amazed at his spectacular comeback. There were definitely lots of tears of joy and Robin REALLY celebrated as much as we did.

We can’t thank you enough for making such a wonderful accomplishment possible. As a small token of our appreciation I have enclosed a few photos and a short DVD chronicling Robin’s “Quest for the CT-ATCH” for you to watch at your leisure. I thought you might enjoy seeing some of Robin’s runs and the final victory lap. I told you about Robin starring in movies and have also enclosed a copy of the short film “The Hollow Tree.” I hope you enjoy it. Perhaps you can share it with other members of the terrific staff there at Metropolitan who knew of Robin’s movie career.

Dr. Schwab is a very competent surgeon and was extremely supportive to Jim and me when we were so very upset by Robin’s injury. Even though we didn’t quite believe it at the time, he assured us that Robin would return to normal. He was certainly right! Metropolitan Vet Hospital is very fortunate to have him on staff.

Thanks again,
Marie Morris, Jim Ertel, Robin & Merlin