The 2nd Annual Canines for the Cure Texas Agility Shoot-Out held in Fort Worth, TX, on August 13-14, 2011, was one for the history books. Once again, the North Texas agility community showed the world what can be accomplished when everyone comes together for a common good. This year the Shoot-Out once again surpassed all expectations by raising $42,300 for canine cancer research, bringing the two-year total to $71,500!! Way to go Texas!! Many of us have lost dogs to cancer, but as a direct result of the efforts of each and every person who attended the Shoot-Out, we are confident that eventually many of our canine companions will be saved from this terrible disease due to the research that we helped sponsor.
Each year the Shoot-Out spotlights a local dog that has been lost to cancer. Our first year we honored Ranger, the dog whose death inspired the creation of the Shoot-Out. This year, we honored Libby, an Australian Shepherd loved and missed by Pamela Meeks. Libby was an extremely shy rescue that blossomed in agility and became the first rescue dog in ASCA history to be ranked #1, and she held her #1 ranking for two years. On January 30, 2009, though, Libby lost her life to hemangiosarcoma and that loss is what drove Pamela to become an integral part of the Texas Agility Shoot-Out trial committee.
Obviously, one person, not even one club, can pull off an event of this magnitude. The core team of Christi Farley, Pamela Meeks (Fort Worth Agility Sports Team), Linda Knowles (Gold Medal Agility), and Nikki Heep had numerous individuals and clubs step up to lend a hand with an astounding 104 people volunteering to work at the trial. There were 266 handlers with 382 dogs running a total of 1,975 runs over the weekend with one handler coming all the way from Sherwood, Arkansas! We could not have pulled this event off if it were not for the agility community totally embracing the concept. Everyone – trial committee, judges, chief ring stewards, course builders, raffle organizers, memorial wall creators, raffle ticket sellers, ring crew, competitors, vendors, and anyone who bought a raffle ticket - was an integral part of making the 2nd Annual Canines for the Cure Texas Agility Shoot-Out a smashing success. We look forward to seeing what next year’s event will bring!