‘Rowdy’ flies for love and redemption at the GoPro Games

Rowdy loves to fly. Paws out, ears akimbo, six-year-old Rowdy has jumped his way to the top of the dogpile in the Dock Dogs “Big Air” world rankings for Golden Retrievers.

At the 2014 GoPro Mountain Games, however, Rowdy lost by a nose in a heartbreaking final round. The (somewhat) rare second-place didn’t phase Willis, however, and in a sign of the friendly nature of the Dock Dogs scene, she cheered on 2014 Big Air winner Remy and owner Jon Langdon.

This year, however, Rowdy is out to redeem his 2014 performance, and maybe make an impression on the lady dogs as well. 

Doggie dating scene

For all those Big Air female dogs at the event, Willis wants them to know: “Rowdy is available! We’ve been looking for a female for Rowdy because we’d really like to jump with one of Rowdy’s puppies,” she said.

Even if Rowdy doesn’t find a match made in GoPro Mountain Games heaven, Willis said she and her fellow Dock Dogs competitors are fired up for their favorite event of the year.

In Memoriam of Jasper

Willis said that toy drive, a love of the water, and of course great leaping ability are the three keys to creating a champion Dock Dog.

Jasper the dog had all three of these attributes. Jasper had competed at seven of the past eight years at the Mountain Games, and was slated to compete at this year’s event, but unfortunately passed away this past March at the age of 14.

Jasper had been jumping with a titanium rod inserted into his left leg, a result of cancer treatment he was undergoing.

Jasper’s owners, Yvet Montiel and Rich Schafer, have returned to compete in the 2015 GoPro Mountain Games, this time dedicating their performance to the late Jasper. Shafer will compete with a dog named “Trouble” and Montiel will compete with Tonka. Both dogs are Dutch Shepards.

Despite a heavy heart from the loss of Jasper, Shafer said he and his dogs are really looking forward to competing in the GoPro Mountain Games.

“This is THE best Dog Dock event each year,” Rich Schafer said. “I can go watch kayaking, slack lining, stand-up paddle, climbing, and the crowds are huge.”

Dock Dogs Hall of Famers will be competing as well. Sue Barnes and her legendary dog “Tanner” will be here, along with Hall of Fame owner Tom Dropik.