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On Saturday June 4th, over 50 dogs showed up at San Diego's Imperial Beach to participate in the annual Loews Coronado Bay Resort Surfing Competition. Now in its sixth year, the challenge that doubles up as a fundraiser, is a fun event that showcases the surfing skills of canines.
The competition, a natural extension following the success of the resort's dog-surfing lessons, has fairly simple rules. Each canine or canine team, is given ten minutes during which time they have to catch at least two waves. The contestants are judged based on their confidence, ability to stay on the board and length of ride.
Judges also look at attitude and attire - A wagging tail and cool surfboard shorts or shades go a long way. To level the playing field, the contest is divided into three categories - dogs under 40lbs, dogs over 40lbs and tandem surfing - where dogs team up with other dogs or humans.
Among the contestants this year was Chopper the Biker Dog, a little Boston terrier, better known for his motorbike skills. Also competing was a French bulldog, a team of five tandem surfing pooches dubbed So Cal dogs and 2010's under 40lbs surfing champ - Abbie Girl.
With over 2,500 people gathered to watch the fun event, the confident pooches - Some veterans, others novices, began the competition. Living up to her stellar reputation, Abbie Girl edged out the tough contingent of dogs under 40lbs and also won third place in the tandem category, where she surfed with her owner - Michael Uy.
Golden retriever, Kalani AKA Lil Surfer Girl, who looked very fetching in her pink attire, took the top honors in the larger dog category - Like Abbie, she is a veteran of the Loews competition and took home the top prize for best tandem surfer in 2010.
This year's most impressive tandem or should we say trandem team were Zoey, a Jack Russell terrier and his two owners Scott and Tyler Chandler.
After the hard day's work, the dogs were treated to the customary sausage roast, and then a good night's rest at the pet-friendly resort. Best of all, the popular event was able to collect some serious dollars for DonorsChoose.org a non-profit organization where teachers post their classroom needs and get them fulfilled by private individuals.
Resources: surfertoday.com, socalbeachmag.net, loewssurfdog.blogspot.com