I have been making the trip 2 hours south twice a week to get Even on the treadmill. And I can honestly say, that underwater treadmill is a god send. Not only did it keep Even sane during this rehab process, it also kept me from slitting my wrists dealing with her :)
She is in amazing shape, better than any of my other dogs, who also get to go on her walks etc. So the only difference between them and her is the treadmill. Which she is officially over with in that part of her rehab. I will miss it, but I won't miss the money it took out of my bank account every week!
Yesterday I was told "come back in 2 weeks for a re-check"...which was great :) Even is dealing with the restrained recalls "aka high impact activities" very well, no soreness. She has full range of motion and looks great :) We will be working on increasing the number of restrained recalls and once we get to 12 a day, we can start adding a tunnel and some 4" jumps. She still gets Passive Range of Motion, icing and ball work everyday to keep that joint in good working order. For me this is huge, many steps forward...just so much time/money/emotion put into Even...things are actually starting to come together :)
Even is like a 9 week old puppy, she has not much training on her as she has been injured so much, so training her is taking patience, but she is getting impulse control :) After her first introduction to the restrained recalls, she was GONE after 3 of them, eyes glazed over, in her own little world. So over-stimulated she couldn't hear me...that has been replaced by focus, thank goodness :) Her overwhelming need to control other dogs has been replaced with a happy dog, very nicely interacting with all dogs. Exercise is good for Even. Exercise makes Even and her owner happy :)
So now the idea is, the scar tissue has formed on her bones. Now we have to slowly increase the pressure on the cartilage to tell the brain to harden the scar tissue. Without causing pain. So far so good :) Dr. Julia even mentioned herding in her near future :) Which makes me so excited, I am going to cry seeing her on sheep again, I know I am...I have mentioned that before :) But things have to continue to be built up before we start putting her on sheep, since things cannot be controlled as easily and I have a feeling she is going to be a hellion :)
Even will never jump full height in USDAA, which would be 22". She will be a Performance dog, if she does agility at all. I have no issues jumping her 16", she gets to play, she gets to have fun and run agility. That's all that matters to me.
She will also not have running contacts. Not because I don't want them (I like Lynn's 98% of the time--that 2% is when there is something evil after the dogwalk! LOL)...but because the bottom line is it requires so much repetition :( I can teach Even 2 on 2 off contacts with easily half or 3/4 less times on the equipment...less wear and tear.
But I am not planning any agility for her this year (except what is needed to help with rehab). 2011 will be just stockwork. I want to make sure that joint is solid, and the bottom line is, herding is more natural on her body and less impact than agility.
Not sure why I am writing about this...but I guess I want to be able to remember this time in my life :)