East Texan Rehabbing For The Good Of His Dog - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

6/19/07

East Texan Rehabbing For The Good Of His Dog

Bill McFarlin is on a mission. He is painfully working through a 6-month rehabilitation of a groin tear he suffered in March.

"The guys at Mother Frances are working their tales off with me," McFarlin said.  "They get on to me.  I push a little too hard. It's that competitive spirit in me."

He's pushing hard because he has a world class athlete waiting patiently for his return. Lucille, his Border Collie, was on pace to qualify for the 2008 AKC National Agility Championship.

400 "speed points" and 6 qualifying runs are needed to qualify. Lucille is just 40 points and 2 qualifying runs shy of that mark.

"It's a legitimate shot that she has a chance to get into I'd say the top 25 dogs," McFarlin said, "And we're talking about 500 to 600 dogs in her jump height, some from all over the world that are just phenomenal dogs."

The problem is, Bill was just given the green light today to do some walking exercises.  But, in dog agility, you need to be able to do a lot more than walking.

"I kind of floated along out there and kidded everybody, the fat man running with the wild and crazy dog," McFarlin joked.  "Now the fat man has got to shape up just a little bit."

The down time hasn't been all bad. Bill has been working with Lucille on tightening up her turns and obeying commands from greater distances. 

With a November deadline fast approaching, Bill is hoping his hard work in rehab can get Lucille back on course by September.

"I get up in the morning and think about that," McFarlin said.  "I've got to do this for Lucille, because I want to do all that I can because of where she came from, that pound, that shelter in Southern Louisiana. That's why I'm working a little harder probably than I would have two or three years ago.  I've got about 45 days. I may have to travel a little bit too far for me, but I think we can get it done."

You can meet Bill and Lucille at the Longview Library this Friday, June 22.  Bill will also have his other two dogs, Star and Maggie.  They will be doing agility demo's and performing tricks. They will perform at 10:30am and 11:30am.

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