Canines make a splash |

Canines make a splash

Chip Chadwick of Reno and his dog Mercy compete Friday afternoon at Heritage Park.
Brad Coman |

Many canines enjoy making a splash and retrieving a favorite toy. Several dogs did just that at the Splash Dogs competition at Heritage park Friday.

Michon Mills said Splash Dogs is a competition for canines that allows them to compete and exercise while doing what they already love; run, splash and play. The canines participate in a dock-jumping contest where they jump into a pool with inches and feet printed along the sides. The dogs are encouraged to jump as far as they can to retrieve their toys and are judged by where their tail hits the water, resulting in their distance.

“If your dog loves water, and retrieving a favorite toy than Splash dogs may be for them,” said Mills. “ It’s a great activity for them and the dogs and owners really seem to enjoy it.”

Mills said she has been participating in Splash Dog competitions with her Belgian Malinois, Inde, for about four years. She and Inde have competed in the Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge Western Regional Champonships and the Monitoring World Cup Championships in Italy, among other competitions where Inde always performs well, according to Mills.

“She never fails to amaze me, “ she said. “ She always performs her best and she has high results because of it.”

Mills said the competitions at Heritage park were smaller and less competitive ones where the canines and their owners have the option to just practice or participate in the two day waves for a chance to qualify in the finals.

“It’s a good introduction to the program and allows the teams to try out their abilities,” said Mills. “Once both parties are comfortable, they can set higher goals and compete in other competitions.

A 10-year-old Vizsla yellow lab mix named Sinner participated for the first time during the Splash Dogs competition. Her owner Karen Felicetta registered her to practice.

“I didn’t know how she would do with all the excitement and the other dogs, “ said Felicetta. “ She seems to be doing pretty well though. She doesn’t like jumping off the dock, yet. But she will get there, we just need some practice.”

Judge and participant Jeff Vanatta said Splash Dogs is a great way for pet owners to get out with their dog and do something fun.

“What I really like is everyone is together for a common thing,” he said, “playing with their dogs and having a good time.”

For more information on Splash Dogs visit