Duck Dog to Dock Dog


The natural tactic of an enthusiastic duck retrieving dog is an awe inspiring leap style water entry.You know the one we all find so gut level pleasurable.Itís the kind you see in advertising campaigns for great dog food.Usually the featured dog is a Lab or Golden.The epitome seems like a mindless launch without regard to water depth, temperature or any kind of reasoning ability.Maybe thatís why these classic shots donít feature Poodles.The brain gets in the way.


Be that as it may, there is a venue built entirely around the perfect launch.Dock Dog is yet another competition my Miniature Poodle has endured.Each of the many venues we have shared has been instructive, challenging, entertaining, occasionally rewarding, and always another advertisement for Poodle versatility


We stepped up to the dock in Ft. Worth, TX last June for a local event, and came away after the weekend with the five qualifying rounds needed for a Novice Dock Dog title.JIB is 14.75Ē tall, and jumped 9í6Ē as his personal best.Had he jumped over 10í he would have been in the Junior division and would have forfeited the title.A 14 ft practice jump was a wake up call!


With the title in hand, we were qualified for the Dock Dog Nationals in Kansas City at the Cabelaís store Oct 13, 2006.The day turned out very cold with a North wind and chilly water.Only a Lab could be unaware of these facts.††


The Novice dogs included Labs, Goldens, a German Shorthair Pointer and JIB.We got one practice jump from a dock into the pond, and it went well, but I hustled the Poodle-cicle back to the rental car after that!We tried the practice dock into a pool, and each jump was shorter.Finally, I knew what JIB knew.It wasnít about ducks.It was only about docks.


We got through the preliminary round and made the finals at sunset.The German Shorthair refused to jump, and JIB had to be talked into it.Still, there was a Golden that jumped even shorter than the Poodle!JIB earned the official award of fifth place Novice Dog at Dock Dog Nationals!Iíll take that, and challenge our Standard friends to step up to the challenge.See details at


Suzi Cope and JIB

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