Tag Archives: Surfing

Amusing Monday: Deaf pit bull gains confidence while learning to surf

Every year about this time, dogs mount their surf boards to ride the waves in various surfing competitions, and each year new stories seem to emerge about human-canine bonds that grow out of this unusual sport.

Mr. Breakfast is a deaf pit bull who was rescued from the dog-fighting world and became the close companion of Liz Nowell of San Diego. Mr. B, as she calls him, was originally named Briggs. When Liz first fell in love with him, he was withdrawn and had some behavioral problems, as she explains in the first video. But thanks to her patience and understanding, this dog’s world has grown richer and dramatically better.

“Once his name changed to Mr. B, people began to see past his tough-looking exterior to the warm gooey lov-a-bull goof inside,” according to an article in Pit Bull Press. “In the past years, Mr. Breakfast has learned four new signs, learned how to surf and has developed a truly happy nature as our bond has developed.”

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Amusing Monday: Stories of surf dogs and their human companions

Some dogs take to the water more than others, but it’s always great to see the stories behind dogs who excel at surfing — or other feats of athletic skill, agility or mental competence.

One such story involves a surfer dog named Sugar and her human companion Ryan Rustan, who says his dog changed his life in many positive ways. In the first video on this page, Ryan talks about being a surfer who was always quick to anger, an attitude that held him back in school and other endeavors. Things changed for Ryan when he found a hungry dog on the street in need of help. Ryan rescued Sugar, who in turn rescued him.

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Amusing Monday: See Spot; See Spot splash

Through the years, I’ve featured some surfing dogs in this “Amusing Monday” feature. While dogs are still surfing strong in various contests each year, I thought it would be nice to see some other doggy feats.

The first video player on this page is the Diving Dog competition at this year’s Western Regionals for the Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge in Huntington Beach, Calif. The second video is the Fetch It Diving competition at the same event, which occurred on May 30 and 31.

The Incredible Dog Challenge, now in its 17th year, includes a slalom course for “pole weaving,” an agility course for large and small dogs and a freestyle flying disc event, in addition to diving and fetching. A good recap of the event is shown in the third video at the bottom of this page.

I suggest taking a closer look at some of these speeding-bullet dogs, shown in videos of the winning events. (Scroll down and click on “Western Regionals” for more options.) I understand that King TV Channel 5 will air events from the Western Regionals this Sunday at 10 a.m.

Winners from the Eastern Regionals, held in Atlanta in April, and winners from the Western Regionals will go on the compete at the National Championlship in September in St. Louis.

We can’t forget about the surf dogs. The Unleashed by Petco Surf Dog Competition was held July 13 in Imperial Beach, Calif. The page includes pictures of the winners. One of the better videos from that competition was put together by International Business Times of London.

Purina compiled some video clips to show surf dogs riding the waves at the Huntington Beach competition. Another good dog surfing video was offered by SoCal magazine.

Finally, for some high-resolution images of dogs in the surf, check out the slide show put together by The Telegraph of London with pictures by Joe Kalamar of AFP and Lucy Nicholson of Reuters.

Amusing Monday: Rats take to water like surfers

I’m on vacation this week, but I wanted to bring you an amusing entry, so I reached back to Sept. 28, 2009, when I published the following:

I’ve never owned a pet rat or a pet mouse, so I don’t know if surfing comes naturally to these little animals. But I have to say that I was impressed with a few select videos of surfing rodents.

The first, in the viewer at right, is called “The Radical Rodents.” There is also the Radical Rodents 2 (click here).

These creatures seem more comfortable around water than Twiggy, the famous water-skiing squirrel. I won’t bother with you with those videos. Nor will I trouble you with videos of surfing cats, which seem to be freaked out by the surfing experience, despite claims of their owners.

I will, however, share with you a video of a surfing dog, which seems quite comfortable in the sport.

If you’d like to find out if pet rats enjoy water, check out the story in the London Daily Mail from October of last year.

If you want to observe whether rats like water, take a look at this video of rats playing in water and this one of rats diving for food. If you have a pet rat and want to teach him or her to love the water, check out this instructional video.

Amusing Monday: Surf dog connects people to water

A golden retriever puppy named Ricochet was being trained as a service dog, but she was never quite suited for the work. After a period of transition, she became known as a SURF-ice dog. She loves to go surfing and has a special connection with special-needs people.

ESPN reporter Tom Rinaldi captures the story well in an eight-minute video that I bring to you this week, even though the video is a little longer than most that I post on Amusing Monday.

Another video about Ricochet, written by her owner Judy Fridono, explains why it is important for people to find their true destiny. It’s titled, Riding a Wave of Hope with Ricochet, who got her name, by the way, because she was bouncing off the walls with energy when she was a puppy.

Ricochet’s early life is described in more detail in a story by Jenny McCarthy in Woman’s Day magazine. And a question-and-answer session with Judy Fridono was transcribed on the website Animal Fair.

I first learned about and featured dog-surfing competitions in Amusing Monday two years ago. See 1) June 13, 2011 and 2) Oct. 3, 2011.

Updating the competitions, I found a few more amusing videos about dog-surfing:

  • The 2012 Surf City Surf Dog Contest at Dog Beach in Huntington Beach California in a video production by SoCal Beaches Magazine.
  • A new Dog Surfing Competition this year at Juno Beach, Fla., with video from WPTV, West Palm Beach.
  • The long-running Leows Surf-Dog Competition, now in its eighth year, reported by Rachel Smith, Los Angeles correspondent for ABC News.

Last, and perhaps least, Randall was on the scene at the Leows competition this year, offering commentary and conducting interviews with folks on the beach. See the video player below. Randall, who loves to talk about animals, is best known for his off-color commentary regarding the “badass” honey badger.

Amusing Monday: Surf dogs catch last summer wave

This past summer, I discovered the world of surfing dogs while looking for humorous videos of humans riding waves on their surf boards.

It turns out that this is a serious sport for the dog owners, but I’m still not sure that all the dogs have their hearts in this relatively new competition. Some look less than enthralled while riding the waves and appear to be looking for a good spot to jump off.

As an end-of-summer event in Southern California, the annual Surf Dog Surf-A-Thon was held a week ago at Dog Beach (yes, that’s correct) in Del Mar, Calif.

A Jack Russell terrier named Buddy won the event for the fifth time in the six-year-old competition and became the first dog inducted into the Surf Dog Hall of Fame. See his photo in a Los Angeles Times blog by Tony Perry.

Buddy is also featured in the two videos below showing highlights from the event. The first, by Bryan Rogers, is action-oriented. The second, by B.C. Productions, is a spiffy slide show, mixing some nice stills with video clips.

Amusing Monday: Surf dogs take humor award

Returning from a week of vacation on the Hawaiian island of Maui, I thought it would be fun to feature some amusing clips of people surfing in big waves. I couldn’t find any good ones. Even spectacular wipeouts are not all that amusing.

What I did discover in scanning through many videos is that more than one surfing competition in Southern California has gone to the dogs — literally. As the local CBS network affiliate WPEC put it: “Sit. Stay. Surf.”

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