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Dogs jump for joy at Dock Dog Challenge

March 5, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
The ESPN Dock Dog Challenge runs all week at the annual Fred Hall Fishing Tackle and Boat Show in Long Beach. Man's best friend is making a big splash in Long Beach this weekend.

"She started out at eight feet, and she kind of just looked, then she went up to 15, 18 feet, and by the end of the weekend she was jumping like 21," said Marilyn Barrett, owner of "Phoebe" the dog.

One of the 53 rules in this sport says the object that's thrown in the water cannot be edible.

"We had to throw in that non-edible clause because a man in Arkansas actually brought a live raccoon in a cage one day, and tried to throw in not only the raccoon, but also the cage in," said Dock Dogs Spokesman Jevon Plog.

Whether you live in Arkansas, Long Beach, or anywhere in between, you simply need a dog that wants to jump.

"I love it, but he's out of his mind," said Marc Marsceill, owner of "Dakota." "Believe it or not, he's quiet at home, but boy, when we pull into a parking lot for one of these places, he goes out of his mind until we leave."

"They get a minute and a half, and I'm sure like the first time you rode a bicycle, you didn't just shoot down the biggest hill," said Plog.

A video camera is synced into a computer to determine the exact length of each jump.

"Right where the tail enters the water, you find that point, you click on it, and the camera shoots out the score of 15 feet even," said Plog.

As you can see, it is a team competition. The throw is as important as the jump.

Just about three years ago, one dog jumped nearly 29 feet, which today is still the world record. They tell me they have a bigger pool in Long Beach, if needed.

"He just brought his dog out, and it kept jumping farther and farther, until it flew out to 28 feet, 10 inches," said Plog.

The winners certainly jump out at you.

DockDogs.com

Fred Hall Fishing Tackle, Boat & Travel Shows


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