Dog Days

There’s nothing quite like plunging into a pool on a summer day. But few of us hit the water with as much gusto as a dog going after a ball.

Now all dogs can try their paw at dock jumping, an up-and-coming canine sport (yes, sport), during the Buckeye DockDogs competition. Held in conjunction with the Chagrin Valley Hunter Jumper Classic, it will take place at the Cleveland Metroparks Polo Field July 18 through 20. Any breed, size or ability is welcome to come and make a splash.

The contest features three events: Big Air, Extreme Vertical and Speed Retrieve (human translation: long jump, high jump and track). But all the events involve dogs launching off the end of a dock into a pool of water.

Dock jumping took off in 2000, after it was used as a filler event during the ESPN Great Outdoor Games. The DockDogs organization was founded in 2002 and clubs began popping up, including Medina-based Buckeye DockDogs.

With a willingness to get wet and training, most pups can become dock jumpers, says Lodi resident Randi Breese, who’s been supporting her border collie’s dock-jumping dreams for two years.

“I can see his excitement,” Breese says. “He just bursts down the dock to jump in the water. So that’s why I compete. I like seeing him happy.”

More Dog Treats ...
There’s another Buckeye DockDogs Competition Aug. 16 and 17 — extra time for you and Duke to work on his big air.

Swim with your best friend atDog Paddle & More,Aug. 23 at the Hinckley Reservation pool.

The National Dachsund Races waddles into Berea Oktoberfest Aug. 29 through Sept. 1. A prize will also be awarded for best-dressed weiner dog. Seriously.
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