Surfing Dog

TheActiveTimes.com

Dogs riding waves may not be an Olympic sport, but it is arguably more popular than many professional sports. There are many annual competitions in which anywhere from 50 to 100 dogs catch winning waves for a medal.

Some of the four-legged animals are so popular that they have several sponsors and help raise money for various charities. Many are inducted in their own Hall of Fame and become members of the So Cal Surf Dogs, a well-known fun loving group of dog owners who surf with their dogs. They promote the sport for both the mental and physical health of you and your best friend.

Most of the amazing athletes on the list have been rescued from the streets, found hungry and sick, who discovered their love for surfing by accident. A few have been bred to be active and agile. Don't be intimidated if you don’t ride a wave as well as a dog. They have trained for years to become good and win medals – just like most people. As in human events, there are different weight-class divisions and even tandem heats with the owners.

Best Surfing Dogs

Ricochet, Golden Retriever
 

Ricochet, Golden Retriever

Ricochet is arguably the most famous award-winning surf dog in the world. She not only wins contests but surfs with purpose – she is the Canine Ambassador for Surfers with Disabilities. Ricochet is a SURFice dog® that provides therapeutic assistance, while creating unique surfing experiences to empower kids with special needs, people with disabilities, wounded warriors, and veterans with PTSD. She is also in two Surf Dog Halls of Fame.

Dozer, English Bulldog
 

Dozer, English Bulldog

Dozer is also very famous. He, too, has been surfing since 2008 and has 11 awards to show for it. His surfing career started while watching an event and a board washed up onto the beach. Dozer jumped on it and would not get off. He loves the water but he also likes to play fetch with the water toys.

Antonio, Spaniel Mix
 

Antonio, Spaniel Mix

Antonio's nickname is Cap' Tony. He was brought to his owners by their daughter who wanted to adopt and take care of him. They say he was super skinny and only had patchy hair. Now, he is almost 20 pounds with a reddish coat and loves to play all kinds of sport. Surfing is his favorite. He has medaled in four major competitions. Antonio also likes to get petted, play tug-o-war, sleep and eat.

Sugar, Surfing Rescue Dog
 

Sugar, Surfing Rescue Dog

Unlike many surf dogs, Sugar likes to ride a 5-foot shortboard. See her as she takes off and rides a monster doggie wave "hanging 10" at the 2012 Surf City Surf Dog contest in this video. This is believed to be the biggest wave ridden to date from a dog this size in small dog surfing contests. Her owner, who saved her from the streets of L.A., is well-known Huntington Beach surfer Ryan Rustan. He credits her with saving his life and staying sober.

Betsy, English Bulldog
 

Betsy, English Bulldog

Betsy used to live in a home that had a pool with no fence, according to her profile on So Cal Surf Dogs. When she was 7 months old she fell in and almost drowned. That never scared her and she loves the water. Her favorite activities are swimming and surfing. “We have to drag her out of the water as she continues to fight to stay and swim a little more,” her owners say.

Kalani, Golden Retriever
 

Kalani, Golden Retriever

Competing since 2009, Kalani is one of the most accomplished surf dogs in the world. Last year she was inducted to the Surf Dog Walk of Fame. After birth, Kalani was part of a "Puppy Prodigies" neo-natal and early-learning program where she was taught exercises, socialization and stimulation. In addition to being a champion surfer, Kalani is also a Certified Canine Good Citizen.

Haole Boy, Yellow Labrador
 

Haole Boy, Yellow Labrador

Haole is introduced as a dog that has a true passion for surfing. As a puppy Haole was naturally drawn to the ocean but he was almost 5 when he started surfing. His owner, John, was coming in on a wave when Haole paddled out and attempted to get on the board. Soon after that he finished first in the 2013 Surf City Surf Dog Competition XL Dog division at Huntington Beach. He has won several awards after that.

Bono, The Brazilian Surf Dog
 

Bono, The Brazilian Surf Dog

Bono has his own Instagram account. He and his owner Ivan Moreira broke the record for the Longest Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) ride on a river bore by a human/dog pair with the impressive 1.05 miles journey down the Mearim River in Arari, Brazil. Ivan and Bono are the first human/dog tandem to hold this record.

Beans The Whippet
 

Beans The Whippet

Beans The Whippet has been jumping on surf boards and boogie boards in and out of the water since he was 4 months old. Beans is believed to be the only whippet who surf. These dogs only have about 2 percent body fat, so they get very cold as soon as they are in the water. He was even sponsored for a competition.

Kona, German Shepherd Mix
 

Kona, German Shepherd Mix

Kona is often the dog to beat at competitions. In the summer of 2008 she and her owner went to see a surf dog contest where Kona had "much more interest in being a pawticipant than spectator." She was then enrolled in the "San Diego Surfing Academy" for lessons, and she has been surfing ever since. To date, she has helped raise about $3,000 for various animal and human charities.

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For the complete list of Best Surfing Dogs, go to TheActiveTimes.com.

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