Watch The ‘Michael Jordan of Dogs’ Leap a World Record 30 Feet

Written by Sharon Parry
Published: December 19, 2022
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If you didn’t already know what Dock Diving is, you are about to find out! The American Kennel Club describe it as the “perfect sport for water-loving canines”. In this video we see the best of the best showing us what they can do and we guarantee you will be impressed. Dogs really are incredible!

What Exactly Is Dock Diving?

Dock diving is made up of two different disciplines. The first is ‘distance jumping’ where a dog leaps off a platform (dock) and competes for the longest jump. The second is called air retrieve and the dogs have to knock a bumper on a piece of apparatus.

Any dog over six months of age can compete and it is open to all breeds so if you have a Pug or a Labrador, you and your dog can have a go! A team consists of one human and one dog.

In formal competitions, the diving dock is at least 40 feet long and 7.5 feet wide and must have a barrier around it so that the dogs cannot jump off the sides. It has to be covered in a non-slip surface so that they get the best traction for leaping.  The dogs land in a large pool of clean water and that must be at least 41 feet long and 21 feet wide. Pools are around four feet deep and measurements are made using a measuring banner.

golden labrador retriever

Any dog can compete in Dock Diving

©Denis Moskvinov/

Spitfire the Champion

This video shows us how an expert dock diver does it! We see Spitfire the whippet, handled by 14-year-old Sydney Mackey, break some records. First up is the Big Air jump and Spitfire covers 30 feet and five inches before splashing down into the pool. Next comes Extreme Vertical where Spitfire leaps eight feet and four inches into the air to touch the bumper. Then in the Speed Retrieve it takes Spitfire just 3.864 seconds to retrieve the target object. With a final score of 3218.89 Spitfire breaks the Iron Dog word record at the Clark County Fair in Ridgefield, Washington State.

We know that whippets are extremely fast dogs but this is on another level! It takes a lot of practice and a very special dog to achieve this level.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © madaise / Creative Commons / Original

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About the Author

Dr Sharon Parry is a writer at A-Z animals where her primary focus is on dogs, animal behavior, and research. Sharon holds a PhD from Leeds University, UK which she earned in 1998 and has been working as a science writer for the last 15 years. A resident of Wales, UK, Sharon loves taking care of her spaniel named Dexter and hiking around coastlines and mountains.

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