The Doberman - Versatility - Dock Diving
Dock Diving or Dock Jumping is a sport where dogs compete by jumping off a dock into a body of water (pool or pond). They have different types of competitions including distance jumping (most popular), height jumping and retrieval based on time. All include some kind of floating toy that the dog retrieves, although in distance jumping, retrieval of the toy is not required. Toys range from tennis balls to Wubbas and Frisbees to bumpers and bird decoys. Any floating toy that your dog loves will work!
Dock Jumping first appeared in 1997 at the Incredible Dog Challenge, sponsored and produced by Purina. Then in 2000 it was seen again at the ESPN Great Outdoor Games. The event was a huge hit and the sport has grown over the past several years to become one of the most exciting new dog sports in the world.
There are 3 different venues that host Dock Diving events: Dock Dogs (http://www.dockdogs.com/) is a world wide venue that has Big Air, Extreme Vertical, and Speed Retrieve. Splash Dogs (http://www.splashdogs.com/) is concentrated on the West Coast. Ultimate Air Dogs (http://ultimateairdogs.com) has events East of the Mississippi and has Ultimate Air, Fetch it! and Catch it! Splash Dogs and Ultimate Air Dogs have teamed up with the United Kennel Club (UKC) and registered dogs can now receive UKC recognized Dock Jumping titles through these venues. Rules and regulations vary slightly between Dock Dogs and the 2 UKC recognized venues. Please visit their websites for rules and regulations (www.ukcdogs.com).
Dock Jumping clubs can be found all over the country. These clubs are a great way to get your dog into the sport. They host fun jumps and practice jumps where experienced club members help the newcomers get their dogs “wet” and ready for competition. It is a fun, friendly, atmosphere that still has that competitive feel. Spectators are encouraged to clap and holler for the dogs to get them pumped up for their jumps and everyone loves to see the dogs fly! The sport is dominated by Sporting dogs such as Labradors and Chesapeake Bay Retrievers but it is open to any and all dogs, pure bred or mixed, big or small. While the majority of the dogs will be Sporting breeds, you can see a wide variety of dogs from Chihuahuas to Newfoundlands to mixed breeds of all shapes and sizes.
While Dobermans are not generally known for their love of water like many of the Sporting dogs, they can be good swimmers and great jumpers! If they aren’t good swimmers, all venues allow life jackets. Their athleticism, drive, and fearless nature enable them to excel at this sport. There are a handful of Dock Jumping Dobermans in the US today and the number seems to be growing as more and more people become interested in the sport.
Can your Doberman fly?
Here is Scudmore Acres TI Nite Hawk AX AXJ, "Lucas", competing in a dock diving competition:
Here is Am Ch, UDC Ch, UGrCh, Int’l/Nat’l Ch, UAGI, URO1, CA, USJCh Fayek Pitch Black V Firefly RN, BN, CA, MX, MXJ, NF, DJ, RATI, RATN, CGC, RL1, RL2, ROM, "Kyra", and her owner Meejin:
Allure Alisaton Azure Rojan, NA NAJ WAC, "Ayla", showing great form in her jump!
Content & photo contributions by Meejin Pike, Tracy Daugherty, Holly Haynes-Clark, Robin Nuttall, Joshua Bradley, and Natalie Donnelly