I got off work at 6:30 AM home at 7:15 AM and after a 5 hour nap, I loaded the truck, collared and watered the dogs. Loaded 16 dogs into the truck. The dog truck is configured for 20 dogs (5 boxes double stacked per side), with a possibility of 22.
Since I can’t lift anything over my head for fear of regressing my shoulder that cuts out the top boxes. Now I have to fit 16 dogs into 10 boxes. The first 2 boxes on both sides of the truck are doubles. I was able to load the 4 that normally go into those boxes and add a smaller female per box. Then the remaining 3 boxes on each side got a dog. Ok, that leaves 4 left. Those 4 rode in the cab of the truck. It’s a good thing it’s a crew cab and the trails are only 10 minutes from the house.
I was at the track at 3:15 PM and had the first team out a few minutes after 4 PM. I ran two teams of 8 dogs on the toboggan sled for 8 miles. The toboggan sled is older and a little heavier than my other sleds, which makes it a great training sled. The secret to steering the toboggan is to have some weight in the sled.
The first team I had Mae and Bear in lead, Amizette and Cyphers in swing, Alli and Tolby at Team 1 and Hawkeye and Lasar at wheel. I want to take advantage of the shorter runs to see what leader potential may have developed over the last few months.
Halfway through the run I moved Cyphers up and put Mae back at swing. Mae did great at lead. Cyphers was a little unsure at first as he remained a nose length behind Bear, but then he caught on and kept pace with Bear.
The second team consisted of Bogey and Luna at lead, Velma and Gabby at swing, Apollo and Zia at team 1 and Timber and Thursby at wheel.
I used the same approach and halfway through I moved Gabby at lead and Bogey to swing. I moved Zia up to swing and Velma back to team 1 with Apollo. Velma wasn’t focused at swing. Gabby did a great job. On tomorrow’s run, I am going to start Gabby at lead and see how that transpires.
Shoulder update: The shoulder is still a little soar. The physical therapist tech found a knot in the tendon during my deep tissue massage last Thursday. Monday morning (after a night shift), she went to work again. She couldn’t find the knot, but said the tendon felt “ropey”. The good news is she did find a knot.
Editor’s note: We won’t tell the doctor or physical therapist that I took the dogs out for a run. They might threaten to cut off my muscle relaxers.