The first run at agility class went amazing! I had been more concerned with warming Kili up than running the course, so I was a little discombobulated, but Kili looked great.
Then we had about a 15 minute rest while other people had their turns, and then we went again. She still did well, but I got a bit of the feeling that she was holding back a little. And then by our third turn, which was just a short sequence of Gamble (distance work) she seemed hesitant to do the weave poles. She's still sore. Big sigh. I went home and pulled her from the trial this weekend.
My trainer and I had a long discussion after class because I was feeling quite dejected. We're talking about a, not even, two and a half year old dog that repeatedly "injures" (or just tweaks) her back to the point of being unable to run agility. Is it something in her structure? Why am I continuing to run her if she consistently hurts herself? Am I ruining her long term health by continuing to do agility with her? If I stop doing agility with her, is that detrimental to her long term quality of life (she LOVES agility, clearly)?
What we ended up deciding is that I'm going to take her in to see her chiro more frequently. I'm going to take her in to see some other rehab specialists to get more opinions and eyes on her. And I'm going to contact an animal communicator and see if she can tell me more about what's going on, how she's hurting herself, and maybe how to help prevent it. I'm not sure how much I believe in the whole animal communicator thing. I wouldn't go so far as to call myself a skeptic, and trusted people have used this one and really liked her. I'm willing to try anything at this point.
Kili has a good week and a half off starting Monday as I will be out of town. I'm going home to Toronto for a conference and vacation.