Time For Paws

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Monday, October 31, 2011 - 7:45am

85-year-old dog trainer doesn't let injury slow her down.

Dog agility training is not an easy pursuit.

It takes determination, dedication, and physical fitness, both for the dog and its two-legged friend.

That's what makes Mary VanDeCarr an inspiration.

She's fallen while training and at nearly 86-years old has had more than her share of medical setbacks.

Still, she doesn't slow down.

She's now using a wheeled walker to help her race through the course and guide her dogs.

"As long as I'm doing agility," Mary says, "I don't have any aches or pains or any problems."

Her friends and fellow trainers are amazed at her vitality.

"She's an inspirational figure to everyone who knows her. She's like the battery bunny," says Fran Seibert the owner of Jazz Agility, the center where Mary trains. "She just keeps going."

Mary has run an animal shelter, has rescued countless dogs and now her canine friends keep her busy every day of the week.

Charlie, her miniature schnauzer is rewarded with Mary's special meatballs.

"Egg, good beef and a little garlic," says Mary.

Mary's reward is the camaraderie with other trainers and her precious pooches.

And she has no plans to slow down.

"I'll do it forever," she says. "My goal is just to do it, until the day I die."
 

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