training is finally well under way at the York HQ. new lights have been bought to cope with the extra visibility needed with my increased team and the weather is finally starting to head into reasonable temperatures for running. the lights are a heath robinson system made from maplin parts – plastic case, 7.2 amp hour battery, xlr connectors, fuse holder, power switch, battery conditioner and a 55w drivers lamp from halfords. think it cost around 80 quid and built in a few hours. the main feature of the system is using xlr plugs/sockets so that the battery terminals are protected and the charger just plugs straight in.
the move from a 2 dog to a 3 dog team is impressive. far less scooting and the ability to promote and demote team members from lead to wheel is useful. it’s early days yet and the dogs need many more miles. first rally is in a few weeks and we’re not expecting much, unless everybody else is as unfit as us.
Helen’s been taking Baloo and Mookie swimming at a local dog swimming pool, Merrylegs – or Canine Hydrotherapy Centre – if you want the posh name from a swimming pool with dog hair. we’re swimming Baloo to help keep him mobile with his arthritis and Mookie because he’s a pup that needs some muscles for his first rally season. It’s an amazing facility and well worth the money. the staff work hard with the dogs and the two boys seem to have benefitted loads. infact, Baloo is possibly the happiest dog in York and wants everybody to know, at the most incovenient times of the day. super fit, super happy and in fine voice when ever the urge for a howl comes around. our aim is keep Baloo running for as long as he wants to. he’s had one pre-season cartrophen injection and a daily Synoquin capsule. we’re aiming to stay ahead of the arthritis this year – not wanting any stiffness brought about by over training or arthitic flair ups.
this season may see us trading in the caravan for a van. something big like a lwb sprinter or an iveco daily. the reasoning behind it is that we’ve got two boys not far off their bus passes. we want to give the old boys plenty of room at rallies cos we all know how unreasonable and grumpy the old folk get.