Action-Packed Photos of Dogs Surfing

Unleashed by Petco
Unleashed by Petco / Unleashed by Petco

Hundreds of onlookers crowded the shores of California’s Imperial Beach on Saturday to catch a glimpse of one of the year’s most anticipated sporting events: the Unleashed by Petco Surf Dog Competition.

“As a staple San Diego event, we’re excited to continue the local Surf Dog tradition and foster the powerful bond between pets and pet parents,” says Evan Harding, director of marketing for Unleashed by Petco. “We welcome all pet lovers down to Imperial Beach for a day full of doggie paddles and fun in the sun.”

Now in its 10th year, the annual event saw approximately 60 pooches hang 20 (with their owners in tow) and compete in five different categories: Small Dog, Medium Dog, Large Dog, X-Large Dog, and Tandem Surf. All proceeds from the event—which also features a beer garden (for the human attendees), dog food garden, an agility course (also for the canine attendees), food trucks, and adoptable dogs—benefit the San Diego Humane Society and SPCA. Here are some action-packed snaps from this year’s event.

Australian Kelpie Abbie Girl—another returning champ—had reason to run a victory lap when she took first place in the Medium Dog Competition.

The crowd is suitably enthused.

Redefining the phrase "nose-to-nose."

Strong surfers come in small packages.

I think I can, I think I can.

Kalani (left) and Hanzo (right) are two dogs with a major fan base. The duo managed to cinch their third consecutive victory in the Tandem Surf competition.

Hanzo, a Boxer who has been skateboarding since he was eight weeks old, also took first place in the X-Large Dog competition. (Last year, he was the Large Dog winner.) Not to be outdone, Hanzo's partner Kalani—a Golden Retriever whose nickname is "Lil' Surfer Girl"—placed first in the Large Dog Competition.

Some dogs are wetter than others.

Until next year ...

All photos courtesy Unleashed by Petco