Disc Dog Day in the Valley
Sean Chase/Daily Observer "Lana" goes airborne after her owner, Heather Gallagher, from the Sunshine Disc Dog Club, throws a frisbee during an exhibition show. TailWaggers hosted the second annual Disc Dog Day in the Valley last Saturday at the Petawawa Civic Centre.
PETAWAWA – Man's best friend and their owners had a chance to showcase their talents this past weekend during the second annual Disc Dog Day in the Valley at the Petawawa Civic Centre.
On Saturday, dogs of all sizes raced down King's Sports Field to intercept airborne frisbees and disks hurled into the sky by their owners. The event was hosted by TailWaggers, in conjunction with the Sunshine Disc Dog Club and Scentral Bark Park Committee, to improve the interaction and life styles of both dogs and humans, by opening the doors to the world of dog sports, training and knowledge.
“We're trying to encourage people to come out and learn how they can have more fun with their dog,” said Sharon Needham, owner of TailWaggers. “It doesn't have to be costly or require huge amounts of training. It is a relatively easily and cheap sport to have a go at and this is something the whole family can do.”
Disc dog competitions are becoming a popular sport. For novice dogs, they can include classes such toss and fetch, mini-distance, throw and catch, and distance/accuracy. The concept is generally the same. Contestants have 60 seconds to make as many throws as possible on a field marked with increasingly longer distances. The distances generally don't exceed 50 meters for the longest catches. Dogs are awarded points for catches based on the distance of the throw, with mid-air catches rating extra points.
“This is worldwide,” added Needham. “There is a community and people get to know each other and it becomes a little family.”
The morning included two workshops on frisbee retrieval and freestyle which teaches dogs how to dance. There were three fun matches in the afternoon. The Top Dog prize went to Team Shilo with handler Melanie Wilson. Other prizes went to Team Hoyt with handler Todd Spurrel, who took first place in Toss 'n' Fetch, Team Gemma with handler Linda Ritchie, who came in first in Bullseye, and Team Magic with handler Shirley Lachance, who grabbed first place in Frizgility.
Needham said this event wouldn't be the success it is without the supporting vendors and sponsors like The Alexander Bros Handcrafted Woodwork and Carl Zieroth with Re/Max Pembroke Realty Limited. Located in Laurentian Valley, TailWaggers works to host events throughout the year in the Pembroke/Petawawa area where dogs can learn new skills. They may include intermediate and advanced obedience classes, agility, scent training, tracking, search and rescue, flyball and puppy kindergarden. For more information, check out the TailWaggers page on Facebook at TailWaggers.K9Sport or call 613-401-5707.