Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Won't You Come On Down To My Rescue?

I almost had Jonny talked into a third dog the other day. We stopped in at the shelter so I could sign up for the Doggie Dash and of course we had to go look at the dogs. The Boulder Humane Society has a very high adoption rate, they haven't euthanized an 'adoptable' dog in 9 years (though they do euthanize animals they deem 'unadoptable') so I don't have a problem anymore with going to the shelter and not coming home with somebody. The shelter was full of animals and people, probably because they had just gotten in a shipment of Hurricane Katrina victims. The dogs were out for people to meet but they could not be adopted out for another month so that their owners could get a chance to be reunited (though how someone relocated to Texas is supposed to find their dog in Boulder on top of everything else they have to deal with is beyond me). You could put a hold on a dog though and there was a lovely 3 month old rat terrier/chihauhau mix that we both really liked. I really want a small dog to add to the crew but Jonny thinks one more dog will be too much. He really really liked her though and if I'd pushed him I probably could have gotten him to agree. But on the way home he started getting panicky, claiming I would come home from work one day to find him curled up in a corner in the fetal position because all the dogs had ganged up on him. He was so freaked out and felt so bad about leaving the little one at the shelter that I thought it unfair to push the point.

On the plus side it seems that lots of people have been snatching up the shelter's 'regular' dogs which means the shelter has more room to take in Katrina evacuees and less dogs in the rescue system in general. One more disturbing facet of the whole Katrina fiasco was how well organized the animal rescue community was compared to the Feds. They were some of the first responders in New Orleans and had whole rescue shelters with crates, vets, supplies etc. set up in safe places well in advance of the storm. These groups receive no govt. funding and work soley on donations and volunteerism. Sad that our own government can't muster the same kind of compassion for it's own people.

Anyway, on a lighter note, I've started back with some semblance of a 'training' schedule for both triathlon and agility. My stupid stunt with the 5k notwithstanding, I'm up to running a mile comfortably and 1 1/2 miles not so comfortably. I spent the last week hiking in the mountains (Crested Butte, Ouray and Telluride) with hikes varying from 2-4 hours so I had a pretty strenuous week. Finishing it off with a 5k was not my brightest move ever but I really wanted to go out and support the shelter and feel like I had some kind of return to normalcy since Lola and I have done this race several years in a row now. I told myself I'd walk the last mile or so but I just couldn't bring myself to do it. We finished in 31:48 which has got to be a personal worst even for duathlon 5k's but I finished and I don't think I did any serious harm except for some weirdness with my right knee which was already brought on by the hiking.

I've got an agility trial in a week and a half so I'm back to training with both dogs. Last night I noticed I was running much better and was actually able to keep up a bit so I'm hopeful this trial will go much better than the others. Both dogs still seem to be having some stress issues, esp. at the start line so we're focusing on motivation more than handling or obstacle performance but I am throwing a little bit in here and there so we don't loose that in the process. I think much of the problem has to do with my poor timing and weird running so hopefully as I get better physically the dogs' emotional conditions will improve. Either that or I need to find a doggie sports shrink.

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