Dock Jumping in Florida? - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 04-18-2012, 03:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Dock Jumping in Florida?

Hey guys. I've been really interested in getting into dock jumping with Sophie. She LOVES water, and is incredibly toy motivated. She'd rather do a trick for a toy than a treat. (Mainly because we rarely use treats.)

But I'm curious of several things. What kind of training goes into it? How much time before your dog is considered "ready" to compete? What kind of equipment do you need? Are there any groups or clubs for it down here in Florida, preferably in Pensacola? Or even in the Mobile, AL area!

Thanks guys. C=
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Old 04-18-2012, 04:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Depends on the dog and how competitive you want to be. There are a few tricks to getting REALLY good height and distance and many of us use "dry land" drills. But just for fun you don't really need to train. Many dogs compete their first time out. Generally the first time, you should take your dog up on the platform and play around. Then, you take the dog up the exit ramp, down into the water, and back out. They need to know how to safely get out of the pool and down the ramp. Both of my dogs will be competing the first time off the platform into the pool. Both have been introduced using a normal dock at a lake. For a lot of dogs, switching to a clear water pool is very different so don't assume a dog that swims and will jump into a lake or river will go into the pool. I entered Nikon last summer betting he would go in and he did, so he jumped 7 times in competition and earned a title. The same will be true for Pan this coming summer. He's getting entered this week and has never been off the platform into the competition pool.
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Old 04-18-2012, 08:31 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You can train in advance, on dry land as Lies mentioned, or in the water if you've got a dock or pool available. I have neither, so we didn't do any prior training before taking Halo to her first Splash Dogs event.

We knew she was ready to compete when she jumped into the pool off the exit ramp twice, then we took her up to the dock and she jumped into the pool twice, lol! Not all dogs will jump right in like Halo did, even if they love water and are good swimmers (Keefer!!!). But you can sign up for practice time before and between each wave of competition, and they'll coach you. If it goes well, you can apply the practice fee to a wave of competition, which is what we did.
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Old 04-23-2012, 12:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks guys! Sorry for the late reply. >_< Been working a lot.

But yeah, we've been working with Sophie on jumping into the bayou by our house. She's super motivated and goes after pretty much anything we throw in, so I'm hoping this will be a good competition for her!

Now if only I could find a club around here.. =P
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