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Jumping Jack makes a splash

THIS MONTH a rather unusual athlete will be travelling to America to become the first to represent Great Britain in his chosen sport.

Jack, a Flatcoat Retriever owned by Penny Draper from Lincoln, has been invited to take part in the Dock Dogs World Championship in Wisconsin, USA. Known as DockDogs (dock as in pier or jetty) in the USA, a UK branch has been formed under the name JettyDogs.

Dock Dogs challenges the dog to dash along a purpose built 40ft runway and jump headlong into a long portable swimming pool. Quite simply the dog who makes the longest jump wins. No coercion or force is allowed and the emphasis is on the dog having fun.

The sport is making a real splash in the UK and this year the first official UK branch of Dock Dogs has been formed. Known as ‘Jetty Dogs’ and based in the Midlands, the club hopes to promote the sport throughout the UK. As they say ‘It is a highly accessible sport - anyone with a dog and a ball can participate and everyone enjoys it. It is not necessary to have an expensive pedigree champion or spend loads of time training and it is easy for everyone to understand. Adults appreciate the athleticism of the dogs and the sheer enjoyment they exhibit whilst children just love the splashing and the chance to get wet!’

Jack has been British champion for the last three years and has a personal best jump of 21 feet. He will be the first European competitor to take part in the World Championships and is appearing by special invitation.

The Jetty Dogs will be making an appearance at the inaugural Dog Train & Behave Week finale day on August 4th at Company of Animals, Ruxbury Farm HQ in Chertsey, Surrey.

More information on Jetty Dogs - www.eastmidlandsjettydogs.co.uk