After an exciting drive out to Iowa, the days that followed were even more exhilarating! We are so proud to share this summary of our 3 pups’ World Champion performances!
The competition was held at the Five Flags Center in Dubuque, Iowa, located directly across the street from our hotel.
We waited in line outside the arena for 2 hours for official check-in:
The city of Dubuque shut down part of a street so that DockDogs could construct what’s known as “Dog Town” – where all the competitors set up. We could see the Dog Town tent from our hotel room.
JUST after we got done setting up in the Dog Town tent, a severe thunderstorm warning was issued, then a tornado warning was issued! Thank goodness the tornado warning was downgraded, and we did not have to evacuate.
The Official Schedule:
Seeing the competition floor for the first time at our Handlers Meeting:
We were beyond honored that our friends, Jen and Grace, also volunteers of the GSP Rescue of NJ, decorated their car window, and drove all the way from New Jersey to Iowa to route on the Liver Killers at the World Championship! Honestly, I don’t know what we would have done without them there. Jen and Grace gave our dogs potty breaks, took pictures and video, cheered us on, and made sure our dogs who were not competing were never left alone in their crates.
The Liver Killers
Limoncello (Handler: Brian)
Limoncello had an outstanding season. Not only did she compete in Iron Dog in every event, she earned herself an invite in EVERY discipline possible:
- Big Air (Master Division)
- Speed Retrieve (Express Division)
- Extreme Vertical (Cadet Division)
- Iron Dog (Warrior Division)
- Dueling Dogs (Class 4)
Brian really wanted to focus on Cello’s Iron Dog performance, so he declined all invites, with the exception of Iron Dog invitation. Just 3.5 weeks after an injury that occurred at The Pittsburgh Pet Expo, Cello was cleared by our vet to compete, and our little girl competed in Iron Dog at the World Championship with all her heart! Competing in Iron Dog means she had to participate twice in each of the three disciplines in order to accumulate Iron Dog points.
Her performance was awesome, and she also earned herself a new Personal Best in Extreme Vertical!
- Big Air: 20’4″
- Extreme Vertical: 5’2″
- Speed Retrieve: 8.500 seconds
- TOTAL IRON DOG POINTS: 2720.81
- Big Air: 20′ 6″
- Extreme Vertical: 5’6″ ***New Personal Best***
- Speed Retrieve: 8.482
- TOTAL IRON DOG POINTS: 2758.42
- OVERALL WARRIOR DIVISION IRON DOG WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP RANKING: 10th in world
Cello doing Extreme Vertical:
Cello doing Big Air:
Although Cello did not qualify for Iron Dog Finals, she impressed the crowd with her endurance and efforts. We are beyond proud of our little princess!
Hooch (Handler: Jenny)
Hooch had an AMAZING first season of dock diving… in a matter of months, he went from being afraid of the water, to leaping over 24 feet! Hooch only participated in Big Air and Extreme Vertical competitions this year. He earned invitations to the World Championship for both of those divisions in Elite Division Big Air and Cadet Division Extreme Vertical. Hooch also qualified for BOTH division’s finals at the World Championship! If that wasn’t exciting enough, at the big gala, Hooch and I won DockDogs 2015 Most Improved Team! Hooch is a very sensitive dog, and can be very skittish. We had several hiccups throughout the dock diving season while up on the dock due to banners that blew off the pool, wind that caused the water in the pool to swirl, and light reflections in the water. When these things spooked Hooch, he refused to jump. It took a great deal of support and effort to get him over his fears and continue to perform consistently for the rest of the season. At the World Championship, he did an amazing job during his qualifiers for Big Air – he even made finals! However, the Elite Finals were chosen to be “Spotlighted” – held under the lights at night in the Arena. This means they shut all the lights of, and only had spotlights on the pool and dock. This also meant that Hooch was faced with darkness, shadows, and reflections from the spotlights. “Stage fright” set in during finals, and in the middle of running, he put his “brakes” on … skidding down the dock, and plopping in at 7’7″. On his second turn, he flat-out refused to jump, and we were timed-out. Although this was heartbreaking to me because I felt like Hooch was afraid and confused as to why I’d ask him to jump in what he considered “unsafe conditions,” I couldn’t be more proud of him, his huge accomplishments throughout the season, and his earned spot in both Big Air and Extreme Vertical Finals.
- Qualifier 1: 21’9″ 21’11”
- Qualifier 2: 23’0″ 23’3″ Qualified for finals
- Finals: 7’7″ timed out 6th Place
- OVERALL ELITE BIG AIR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP RANKING: 6th in the world
Hooch doing Big Air:
- Qualifying Round: 6’2″ Qualified for finals
- Finals: 6’0″ 4th Place
- OVERALL CADET EXTREME VERTICAL WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP RANKING: 4th in the world
Hooch doing Extreme Vertical:
Jenny and Hooch winning 2015 DockDogs Most Improved Team:
Words cannot express my excitement for this awesome award!
See just how far Hooch has come from 8 weeks old, to 1 year old, and 6 months of competing:
Lager (Handler: Jenny)
The fact this amazing boy earned his way to the World Championship in 2 months, and just 2 National level events, with no training, and with never having been on a dock before was unbelievable. When he made the finals, we were filled with excitement and joy!
Our friend, Kiersten, caught us just at the moment we found out Lager made finals:
- Qualifying Round 1: 17’11” 19’6″
- Qualifying Round 2: 19′ 19’7″ Qualified for finals
- FINALS: 17’7″ 18’8″
- OVERALL SENIOR BIG AIR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP RANKING: 5th in the world
Lager doing Big Air:
A whole-lotta Liver Killers bling!
Besides medals and trophies, we got some other pretty cool “bling” while at Worlds:
Out of thousands of dogs, only a few hundred are lucky enough to earn their invitation to the World Championship…out of those few hundred, only 6 dogs in each division make it to the finals…I can’t say enough how proud we are of our three fur-kids!