Saturday, July 28, 2012

If I Could Talk to the Animals...

Remember that song from Dr. Doolittle?  Well, there are people out there who seem to be able to and I am fortunate to have one of them as my friend.  I've known Tina Hassett of Our Animal Allies for around 8 years now.  We first met at an agility trial in New England.  I was running Sam and she was running her Italian Greyhound as well as offering her services as an animal communicator.  I sat down with her, had a chat with both Sam and Ginny, and we've been friends ever since.

Tina's insights into Sam and Ginny's personalities that day - when she'd never met me or my dogs before - were uncanny.  Ginny's comment that, "Boys are stupid." was so right on with the way she treated Sam and every other male dog.  At the time I was taking some herding lessons with Sam and when I asked what he thought of that he replied, "I'm going to get those fuzzy bastards."  Yeah, I'm quite sure that's what Sam was thinking and exactly how he would have expressed it too.  Several years later, when Moira joined The Horde, Tina was able to perfectly capture her more reserved and enigmatic personality.

So I've stayed in touch with Tina, despite moves for both of us.  I check in with her 2 or 3 times a year and we have a talk with the dogs.  This week I made an appointment to talk with her to see how everyone is doing since Sam's passing and to check in with Sam as well.  Yes, Tina can communicate with pets who have crossed The Bridge.

Ginny started communicating almost as soon as Tina answered her phone.  Over the years, Tina and Gin have developed a very close friendship.  Gin indicated that while she loved Sam to pieces, it's much easier since he's passed.  She said his passing was a big relief because he was so uncomfortable but she misses the "old goat."  Exactly what I would expect Ginny, who rarely minces words, to say about her father.

Moira was, as always, less talkative.  I think it's because she spends so much time barking.  Anyway, Moira has acknowledged that she is not yet ready to be head of the household.  Before we left Virginia, Ra definitely seemed to be trying to step up and it caused a lot of friction, especially with Georgia.  Apparently, Ra thought being in charge would be easier than it really is :)  She also seems to have taken on Gin's perspective where boys are concerned.  When I mentioned Bogey she replied, "Boys are not a challenge."  She really enjoys agility.  Especially the fact that the obstacles stay put and she gets to be active but she doesn't like not knowing where she needs to go next (yes, I'm working on MY timing Ra).
I know you are wondering if Tina was able to reach Sam.  Of course she was!  Sam was so connected to me that it was easy for her reach him.  Sam was eager to tell me how much he loved me and how grateful he is that I was his person.  He's so relieved to be out of a body that doesn't work anymore and his friend Stomper met him as he crossed The Bridge. He's said he would like to help me, not Moira, at agility trials.  Hmm, seems even Sam thinks I am the weakest link when it comes to agility :)   Sam keeps an eye on all of us and continues to shine love down on me.  He's not ready to come back yet but, he will someday.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Busy Summer

Wow!  I realized I haven't posted much at all this summer and I apologize for that.  It has been a busy one.  From my previous post, you learned that Sam crossed the Bridge at the end of June.
Wishing we had more time together would be greedy.  We had nearly 10 wonderful years and he gave me every bit of himself every day of those years.  In the end, I was honor-bound to give something back to him and release him from the pain he was experiencing.  The house is certainly quieter since his passing but it is a good quiet.  The girls and I have adjusted to his absence and, quite honestly, things are much less stressful now.  Ginny is happy and smiling again - something I hadn't seen for a very long time.

For the weekend following the 4th of July, Moira and I were entered in a 3 day USDAA agility trial.  We ran in 4 classes each day and I couldn't have been happier with our results.  I had 4 goals for that weekend and achieved 3 of them - all on the first day.  Moira finished her Starters Jumpers title so she is now CardiRidge's Sweet Potato Pie HT, JHD, SJ.  The first title listed, HT, is an AKC title that means Herding Tested and the second is an AHBA herding title that means Junior Herding Dog.  So now she has titles in both herding and agility.  Our other goals for the agility weekend were to successfully complete the teeter, dog walk and weaves in competition.  We got the first two but not the last.  We've been working hard on weaves in class and I think we might just have it now.  We'll test that in two weeks at an AKC trial.  Moira also had qualifying runs in Snooker (2) and Gamblers (1) so we had a 33% Q rate for the weekend.  Not bad when previously we were lucky to have one qualifying run.  August is a heavy trialing month for us with agility trials 3 of the 4 weekends.  Two of those trials are AKC so there's a possibility we could get some more titles.

Ginny's 13th birthday was July 18th.  As far as I know, all her litter mates are still living.  Ginny is doing remarkably well for a 13 year old dog.  She's active and happy these days.  When I was packing up to go to the agility trials at the beginning of the month she couldn't wait to get in the car for an adventure.  She is a little stiff in her joints these days so at her next vet appointment we will talk about a prescription for an NSAID.  Other than that, she's great.

So that's where we are with July half over.  I'm going to make a commitment to post more regularly as it's something I miss.  I hope you all are having a wonderful summer.