Today I want to focus on one story in particular that isn't too far overdue. Knight, my wonderful little-man, finished his PACH!!!
He did this the weekend before he turned 5 years old. Just over a year and a half after I switched him down to 4".
October 2011, Knight just gave up at a trial. Maybe the grass upset him, maybe he wasn't feeling well, I'll never know the reason why exactly. But there I was, with this brilliant young dog who no longer had joy in his eyes when we went to trials.
I remember the day before he earned his OAJ. We NQ'd in jumpers because I was doing everything I could to get him faster than a walk. We ran around 80% of the jumps on that course, but I did it. I got him running. That snapped him out of his funk and we quickly attained our OAJ, AX, and AXJ.
He still wasn't thrilled, but he was getting there. So in January, 2013 I switched him to Masters preferred. That was the best decision I've ever made for him.
Over the past year and a half I've watched him blossom into this fantastic dog that trials as well as he trains. I see the dog I see in my back yard when we step out onto that line. It's thrilling. Sure, we're not the fastest team out there... but we love what we're doing. I can feel it and everyone can see it.
This is the first Agility Champion title I've earned. It's been a weird journey. I felt a little guilty for a long time. I felt like "first agility ch" was something Lilly deserved. But here I was, with my blazeless little boy, sitting at QQ #19 with a jumpers Q in the bag. I was all nerves and excitement. Keeping the pending PACH under wraps so we wouldn't jinx our run.
Knight was brilliant. I am so incredibly proud of him and how far we've come. Cassie joined us and cheered for us as we ran. Smiles and laughter abounded. Knight got extra hot dogs and tuna and had no idea why his Q ribbon was so incredibly large.
I also got a message from some good friends of mine who ordered a custom PACH ribbon for the occasion. I was at a loss for words.
I am so incredibly grateful for my little dog, my supportive girlfriend, and my wonderful friends.
Thank you to everyone who has cheered us on through his roller coaster of an accomplishment.