Splash bash: Dogs, owners can’t stop smiling about dock diving craze

Laurie Frazer tosses a toy for her German sheperd, Emmett, at

Rhonna Dias is certain of the sanguine obsession that will occur
after the first trip to a dock diving competition: You will become
addicted.
For more information on Doggone Dirty Dock Diving, click
here.
For Halloween Splash Dock Jumping Competition results, click
here.
Rhonna Dias is certain of the sanguine obsession that will occur after the first trip to a dock diving competition: You will become addicted.

She even has a disclaimer posted on her Doggone Dirty Dock Diving website: “Participating will result in an addiction and desire to be with your dog and travel all over the country to watch your dog jump off of a dock!”

It’s all too true, Laurie Frazer said, a recent dock diving addict and founder of BowWow Adoptions in San Martin. “After the first trip, I went every weekend for the next five weekends. Their tails can’t wag hard enough,” Frazer said about her three dock divers: Emmett, a German shepherd, and two black Labradors Bruce and Feather.

The local dock diving club started by Dias hosted its second competition Saturday and Sunday at its new diving site, 756 Jarvis Lane in Hollister, to celebrate Halloween.

Officially coined the Splash Dogs’ Halloween Splash Dock Jumping Competition, the event included Brody, a border collie from Gilroy; Lexi and Denali, a Labrador retriever and poodle from Hollister; and Buddy, a Labrador retriever form Morgan Hill.

Dias, owner of Denali and Doggone Dirty Mobile Pet Wash in Hollister, formed the local dock diving chapter and rents out the dock and pool to club members and other dock diving enthusiasts. The event was a sanctioned dock diving competition by Splash Dogs, a national sanctioning body for dock jumping and dock diving events.

The sport is scored based on the distance and height of a dog’s jump off a 40-foot dock into an equally large body of water. Each dog gets two jumps per wave, or splash, with the longest jump being scored.

“They run like a jet taking off and run as hard as they can until they become airborne,” Frazer said.

The world record for biggest air (distance) in an outdoor pool is 28 feet, 10 inches by dog Country in 2005 and the world record for a vertical height is 7 feet, 11 inches by dog Brox in 2009, according to dockdogs.com, the official website of the sport.

“We just have a ball,” Frazer said of the dog-lovers at the dock. “Most of us are 30 or 40 (years old) but we’re 8 that day. We splash and play in the water. It’s a great place to go with your dog,” she said.

For novice dock divers, Frazer recommends owners take a dip in the water to help calm your dog before a jump. She said it helps the dogs when they are being encouraged from the water below.

“It’s harder for them to jump into a clear blue pool. They can’t assess the depth of the water. It’s scary, so you want to be there … so they overcome that fear,” Frazer said. “I had no idea they would jump off the dock and love it as much as they do.”

Earlier this year, a Hollister dog set a record at the Sonoma County Fair with a jump of 7 feet, 10 inches. Pyro, a Dutch shepherd, and his owner Ashley Rietsors are members of the Doggone Dirty Dock Diving team.

“Some people train their dogs for it, others don’t,” Rietsors said at the competition in August. “They just have to have a dog that loves to jump and swim.”

For more information on Doggone Dirty Dock Diving, click here.

For Halloween Splash Dock Jumping Competition results, click here.

Leave your comments