By Laura Hopewell
When I traveled to Massachusetts this past weekend to attend the 2nd annual Rock N’ Dock festival in Foxboro, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. This was the first time I’d ever been around these canine aquatic athletes, and even my wildest imagination could not have prepared me for how much fun I would have!
When I set up our Pet Naturals booth on Friday, I was pleased to see that I had prime real estate for viewing the jumps right from our tent and when practice began, so did my smiles. I was surprised to learn that dogs of all experience levels were welcome to participate. It was a joy to see the veterans launch off the dock as well as the rookie dogs that shied away from the leap.
While large breeds like Labradors and Belgian Malanois dominated the entries, there were even a couple smaller terriers making brave launches into the water, clearing 12 feet in a single bound. Perhaps my own little mixed breed would enjoy this sport? I can’t wait to try!
The festival ran from Friday morning all the way through Sunday afternoon (5/31/13 to 6/2/13). Friday night boasted my favorite event of all–the extreme vertical jump-off, in which dogs competed to catch a retriever stick dangling above the water as they flew off the dock and crashed into the pool. I caught a video of Team 21’s champion, Jager, making his valiant 2nd place leap at more than seven feet high!
Saturday and Sunday brought lots of public attention and I had a blast sharing Pet Naturals products with visitors and their pooches. It was a sticky hot weekend on that pavement, but thankfully with lots of wading pools and hoses, there were plenty of ways to keep the doggy guests cool and happy. I also took a quick tour around to see the other vendors–which included everything from a local book shop and car detailing to adoption agencies to dog boutiques and pooper scooper services. Did I mention the pulled pork, pizza, and oysters? Yum!
The best part about this event was that all the proceeds went to benefit the lives of children living with Down Syndrome. I could not think of a more worthy cause for such a grand celebration and I can’t wait for next year! In the meantime, you can find me at the lake this summer with my 11-pound mutt, practicing those dives!