[Hanging 20 joke here]


Imperial Beach was once again home to the Loews Coronado Bay Resort Surf Dog Competition, where pups surfed to wild applause… Some photos from the past couple of years competishe:



Ruff Riders, originally uploaded by Broompl (Pete).


Ruff Riders, originally uploaded by Broompl (Pete).


Tubular, Flavia…



  1. binky-mama says:

    Love it, love it, love it! The dog drooling over the hamburgers was a great added perk.

  2. But I think we will be waiting a long time before the Cat surfing event takes place.

  3. It’s “shaka”, not “chaka”. 😛

    Adorable pups. They must have been having fun.

  4. the other Brenda says:

    looks like a good time was had by all.

  5. Dewi, I think you may enjoy the infamous Peruvian surfing cat…


  6. That was awesome dude !

  7. Hon Glad says:

    Perhaps I could build on my cats love of a dripping tap and introduce a mini-surf board to the bath.

  8. temperance says:

    dude! those dogs were totally feelin’ the stoke…

  9. OMG. There are NO words. I love the little guy with his toes on the nose around 3 mins into it with the paddle surfing partner. TOO MUCH!


    Now I have to watch the surfing documentary I netflixed today.

  10. elliottsmommy says:

    omigosh, omigosh, omigosh – snort – laughing at hovertext – “rather be licking my nads” – ahhh ha ha ha!!! – i’m 35, NOT in 5th grade, but i almost snorted diet mountain dew out of my nose, that was so funny. ahh, sunday giggles, thanks CO peeps. 🙂

  11. Michelle says:


  12. Is there anything happier than a happy dog? I don’t think so. What a treat.

  13. This is an outrage! These people need to be executed IMMEDIATELY! This is animal cruelty. Worse than the hedgehog Shming. LOL just kidding. But I know some dodo head is gonna say something similar. Giggling. Love those doggies!

  14. Shannon says:

    I firmly believe most of these dogs are having the time of their lives. The rest are like “Alright, if you REALLY want me too, *doggie sigh*”

    Mine’s afraid of waves. And he’s half lab. Go fig.

  15. Shannon says:

    *sigh* that DOES look like fun. You know what does TICK me off tho?

    Most beaches I go to don’t allow dogs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Yeah. Like my pooch is going to live glass bottles, syringes and dirty diapers behind. Uh-huh.

  16. Catsquatch says:

    Only a couple of those dogs looked like they actually wanted to surf, the rest looked like they were forced to do it, especially the big black one who had 2 people holding him onto the board.

    But, I guess people are allowed to do what they want with the things they own.

  17. Miss N Casey says:

    Glad to see so many owners practicing safe surfing, with little life jackets for the pups.

    That said, I LURVE the canine cutie in the pink bathing suit around 2:35!!!

  18. 2 of my favorite things ever, puppehs and the beach.

    this just made me so much more excited for taking a vacation.

  19. catsquatch watched a different video than the rest of us, methinks.

    oh, and meg: “i’d rather be licking my nads” — you owe me a new laptop. my current one seems not to be responding well to the water i just spit all over it.

  20. Strangely, not one of these pups is named “Moondoggie.”

    And the dogs that looked like they weren’t into it are just really, really baked. They’re always like “sha, whatever, bra.”

  21. I wish I looked that cool on a surboard! (I don’t) LOL! ;D

  22. Daisy puppy's caretaker--I don't own her, she owns ME! says:

    I agree that this looked kind of fun, but did you notice how quickly the cameras turned away from the wipeouts? This is for a reason.

    Even with humans around (hopefully) to scoop up the de-boarded dog, don’t fool yourself into thinking the pup wasn’t scared or worse, hurt.

    I am not a pro by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, I have about the skills of, well … a dog! That said, I have boogie boarded and body surfed at this exact beach as well Venice and Santa Monica quite often. Believe it or not, even the “little” waves can be MUCH stronger than you think. I mean, this IS the wild ocean after all.

    On a recent trip, a fun time was had by all but that’s not accounting for the innumerable times I was nearly ashore when suddenly a sleeper wave (aka: rip current) either violently ripped my ride from beneath me, or suddenly smashed me from the backside without warning. At worst, I ended up with a mouthful (in my lungs once!) of sandy water from a face-plant and a forearm severely scraped up by the shoreline sand; at best I had a bruised ego and a skinned-up knee that had painful sand stuck in it for a week.

    The pups were cute, but some did look quite scared. Aside from that, you can’t tell me for a moment that those dogs who tumbled like I have didn’t walk away unscathed.

  23. This has to be the definition of redonk.

    I’m having a conniption!

  24. Hang 16 Puppies Hang Sixteen!

    I love how they are so close to shore and just gliding gently into the beach and people every where. I too loved the girl dog in the pink swimsuit she was having a blast with her Human
    Surfs UP!

  25. In response to Daisy’s Puppy Caretaker:
    Like that dog that wiped out and then went back out into the water?

  26. starling says:

    Some of the dogs were definitely having fun, some looked as scared as heck.

  27. love that dog says:

    I’m sure most people here are dog lovers, like me. I train service dogs professionally, and I love using the internet to find photos and videos to practice ‘reading’ different dogs. If you are interested in learning how to ‘read’ the dogs in the pictures above (fun and great for dog lovers!) read on–

    Take a minute to think of a dog having actual fun (body loose and moving freely, eyes bright, mouth relaxed and open) and then look at these guys again. The Golden and the Yellow Lab in the pics above are ‘shut down’ (withdrawn from a situation they find too uncomfortable) and even in the tiny picture you can see the tension in the Golden’s face. That extra light line behind his eye is facial tension, and his mouth is shut tightly. His ears are pressed down and back. Our Lab buddy has the same tension in his mouth and ears, and he has narrowed his eyes, though we can’t see the rest of his face too well. He seems to be holding his body tensely and stiffly–but he’s moments from coming off the board (while his people laugh and cheer behind him) so it’s kind of hard to tell.

    The teeny Chihuahua in the picture has ears down and back again, tail down in a “J” shape, and a submissive or appeasing (not curious or traditionally ‘cute’) front paw up. Uncomfortable dog.

    And you don’t need me for this one: even people who don’t know much about dogs can see that both white dogs want off!!!–the fluffy one being held on by his neck, and the little guy peering over the front of the surfboard in the last picture.

    Only the Swissie (?) in the pics above is finding the experience tolerable, and I wouldn’t say he’s having fun. Possibly he has a tennis ball in his mouth though–if so, that is the cutest thing ever.

    Otherwise, this event is pretty depressing! Hopefully everyone in the video loves their dogs, they just have no idea when ‘fun’ for them equals…’no fun at all’ for their dog. The more you know about how to understand what your dog is saying with his body language, the more your dog will appreciate, and love, you back!
    Watch the video again, with the exciting music turned off, and paying to attention to the people having fun. Just look at the dogs. Freeze-frame it if you need to, to get a good look at them. I bet things look different. Google ‘dog body language,’ or look at sites like My Smart Puppy or Diamonds in the Ruff if you want to learn more. Happy dog ‘reading’!

  28. Catsquatch says:

    Yep, I watched a whole different video on an entirely different website, musta got it all confused in the old brain of mine.


    There are a few of these dogs who are actually enjoying themselves, but most of them are not.

    I agree with Love That Dog, brush up on doggy body language, then watch that vid again.

    See, told you I was a semi nuffer somatha time ;D

  29. So those are obviously little baby waves… but this is mildly dangerous, isn’t it? Dogs are great swimmers and all, but what if one fell off and hit the board on the way? I don’t like to be a nuffer, but this seems wrong to me. 😦 I hope some of the doggins are enjoying it… the majority don’t look like they are at all.

  30. belphebe says:


    Is it possible these dogs are showing a lot of tension because they are concentrating on staying on the board, just like any person would?

    I’ve never tried surfing, but the two or three times I tried to waterski, I never made it to a standing position because my body wasn’t stiff enough. “loose and relaxed” doesn’t cut it when you are trying to attain or maintain an upright position on a moving board in the water.

    I’d say one or two dogs look less than thrilled, but overall, I think the dogs are loving the water play as much as the people are.

  31. It does seem a little unsafe, but not deadly. Maybe some animals are thrill seekers…Anybody remember that water skiing squirrel? Cute tree dweller turns aquatic daredevil!

  32. love that dog says:

    Nope, the dogs are not ‘just balancing’–a dog who is confident and relaxed, performing a physically challenging task, has quite a different look. If you want to compare, it is probably easiest to find videos of agility dogs. Look at dogs on the A-frame or catwalk (both require balance and concentration). You can see the same thing in Search and Rescue dogs over tricky terrain, but it’s probably not as easy to find footage online.

    It’s very telling that one of the primary judging criteria in this contest is ‘confidence’–the organizers themselves realize that a significant number of dogs lack that key factor!

  33. MoonCatty says:

    For the most part, the dogs looked like they were having a great time. There were some dogs that appeared to be more than “concentrating”, they seemed afraid.

    The one part that really made me wince though was when two surfing dogs were coming in at the same time. All of a sudden one board veered to the side, went over the top of the second board and knocked the other dog off. The poor little guy couldn’t see that other board coming from behind him, and couldn’t prepare himself. Those surf boards are big and heavy, and most likely that smaller dog was hurt when he was hit by the front of the other board.

    The thing is that dogs don’t have the same body build, weight and dexterity that a human has. The surf ride goes fine if the board stays even and the dogs basically can stand and keep their balance. But it’s doubtful they have anywhere near the control of the board that a human has, so they can’t compensate as well when unexpected waves hit.

    I’m really not here to nuff. I just saw some of the dogs possibly being hurt, and they were so small compared to the size and weight of those surf boards. However, for the dogs who genuinely enjoy surfing, and many obviously did, it does look like a lot of fun for everyone!

  34. i almost hesitate to say it, ’cause i don’t want to feed the negative energy….

    …but anytime we take our canine pals out to enjoy something challenging, there’s a chance they could get hurt. search and rescue? hell, what about puppy daycare and/or dog parks?

    competent parents understand that. you have to balance the good with the potential for bad.

    i’m not judging either way, based on this brief video. all i’m suggesting is that perhaps the rest of you shouldn’t judge, either. it’s possible some of those dogs might get hurt. sure. but you know what? it’s possible that those same dogs might get smashed by a truck walking back to the car after a wonderful and exhausting day at the beach.

    i don’t think there’s enough information in any of these videos/photos to “read” any of these dogs definitively.

  35. I have had dog since I was born. only one or two of those dogs looked like they were happy, and the rest just looked scared out of their minds. I normally don’t post in the comments, but I really think that the people who think these pups are enjoying this need to get a reality check.

    dogs are not humans.

    you need to stop anthropomorphizing them. They have very different feelings and thoughts from our own and do not see this atmosphere as a fun environment, they just see a bunch of screaming primates and have no clue what they are doing to them.

    imagine that as a small kid you were picked up by a bunch of aliens who communicated psychicly and were raised by them. sure you might grow to like them or even love them, but when a large group of them all get together and force you on to a long flat thing that is speeding along due to no known power that you know of and they keep trying to cheer at you but all you get is a headache because you are not psychic and don’t understand what they are saying. I don’t know about you but I would be scared S***less!

  36. it is very early in the morning and as I look back at my last post I can see that I shouldn’t try to write in the morning because it comes out badly spelled and full of grammatical errors…. but my point remains the same!

  37. “dogs are not humans. you need to stop anthropomorphizing them.”

    (later that same comment)

    “I don’t know about you but I would be scared S***less!”

    So, you’re a dog, then, Mope?

    Never mind spelling or grammar errors. You have no point.

  38. DixiesMom says:

    Not gonna add to the commentroversy, but I gotta add to the hovertext hurrahs! The ‘Nad’ one had me busting a gut!

  39. temperance says:

    oh, well. another ‘animals that i thought were having fun but are really being tortured’ post.

    but seriously- the comments that seem to follow these kinds of posts have gotten me to thinking…
    okay, maybe some of those dogs didn’t like to surf, maybe some of them did. but i can’t understand why thinking that dogs can enjoy the same things we do is always anthropomorphizing them. it seems to me that the more scientists study animals (wild or domestic) the more they find how alike we all really are. which makes sense, since humans are animals also.

    isn’t it just as ‘wrong’ to assume animals are capable of so little? isn’t it just as assumptive to ‘know’ they can’t really enjoy our games, or enjoy getting dressed up- like little bambi? how can either side ‘know’ for sure what animals are really thinking? no matter what- we are viewing them through human eyes, which will always be subjective to a certain point- otherwise we’d all be agreeing on everything.

    i’ll end with this observation: my dog loves me to bits and enjoys pleasing me, but there is no way he would ever, ever go surfing- no matter how many treats i offered, or how much love i showered on him.

  40. EvaWuvsCats says:

    Awww I don’t think those dogs are too happy. Maybe one or two but the rest have their tails under their legs and look so scared. That’s sad. And in a few clips the boards ram right into little dogs and knock ’em off. I dont think giant boards hitting terrified dogs looks like fun.

  41. I knew I’d start a commentroversy! Lol.

    [You give yourself too much credit. Lol. – Ed.]

  42. Perhaps some of these dogs weren’t all that thrilled and may have been a little scared but I’m sure they’d do their 8 seconds on the board all over again if it meant a day at the beach with great food and attention with their doting owners. These dogs are obviously spoiled like crazy (doggie goggles?! full piece swim suit!?) and adored by their owners. If you can’t see that then you are looking with close eyes and minds.

    I applaud those puppy parents for taking the time out of their busy schedules to do creative activities with their pets. All dogs should be so lucky.

  43. Catsquatch says:

    I enjoy a good thick juicy steak.

    Dogs enjoy a good thick jucy steak too.

    Is that anthropomorphizing them?

    I enjoy digging in my yard.

    Dogs enjoy digging in my yard too, even though I myself do not own a dog.

    Is that anthropomorphizing them?

    I do not enjoy surfing, the ocean bites me every time.

    Some of those dogs are not enjoying surfing either.

    Some of them are indeed enjoying surfing.

    Is that anthropomorphizing them?

    Animals have emotions just like we do, so it seems to me that being able to read their emotions is not anthropomorphization at all, it is empathy.

    And anthropomorphization is a LOOOOOONG word to type out several times.

  44. Copy-and-paste, Catsquatch.

  45. I live in San Diego, and while I could not make it to this year’s SurfDog competition, I did go last year. It did seem to me that a few of the dogs were pretty scared, a lot of them were ok with it but not loving it (just doing it to please their owners), and the rest absolutely loved it. For the most part the dogs were surfing in pretty shallow water, and as you could see, there were people all around to rescue any dog who got in trouble. No dogs got hurt, and I doubt there are any–even the ones who were scared–who suffered any lasting psychological damage.

    I wished the owners of the few scared dogs would have taken their dogs out of the competition, but as for the rest of the dogs, I like to think that they would gladly participate if they understood that all proceeds of the event were going to charity–one of which, PAWS of Coronado, is an animal shelter.

    ***Warning: this paragraph is a shameless sales pitch*****If you enjoyed the surfing pups and want to support PAWS of Coronado, they do a calendar, which you can purchase through Amazon, of the event. The 2009 ones should be available in September. I have a 2008 one and it is very cute! Buy one people; it is for the pups!!

    (Sorry for the sales pitch.)

  46. Catsquatch says:

    LOL Theo!

    Thanks man, this early in my morning before my caffine IV is hooked up I tend to forget how to use the ctrl key ;D

  47. IV??? *pfft*
    Four is nuthin’. My caffeine goes to ELEVEN.

  48. Catsquatch says:



    So you DO feel me!


  49. I lol’d my head off at the little dog surfing in slowly, then the unsuspected huge black dog on that HUMUNGOUS surfboard comes in and crashes into the little one xD I know I shouldn’t laugh, but hey, they didn’t look much like they got THAT hurt. After all, the big black/brown one (couldn’t tell, my screen is a bit weird sometimes) had enough energy left afterwards to drool at the barbecue. xD

  50. ghostorchid says:

    I just wanna say…is this event done because dogs seem inclined toward surfing? Or because humans seem inclined toward watching dogs surfing?

    The fact is, I bet those dogs wouldn’t voluntarily hop onto a surfboard. Nor would they stay on it if they weren’t (understandably) afraid of jumping off a moving surfboard. Nor would they jump back on the surfboard post-dismount.

    I mean, they’re all crouched back and none of them have wagging tails while “surfing”.

    I think animals do tons of amusing, cute things by human standards, and you don’t have to stick them on a surfboard.

  51. binky-mama says:

    ghostorchid- Ummm, did you see the dog in the pink suit? Just wondering if you noticed her jumping back on the board “post-dismount”. As for wagging tails “while surfing” I’m guessing that might not be a good idea while balancing (although I still saw some wagging action). I dunno (shrugging shoulders), I must be watching a different video than you guys.