5 Steps on ‘How to Teach Your Dog to Surf’

Teach your Dog How to Surf in these simple steps

With the recent excitement surrounding the Noosa Dog Surf Championships and the inspiring story of beloved ‘Spike the surfing dog’, it seems fitting to share some tips and tricks on teaching your dog to surf.

And remember, they say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks – but we beg to differ!

If you’ve ever dreamed of hitting the waves with your furry friend by your side, teaching your dog to surf can be an exciting and rewarding experience. Not only is it a fun way to bond with your pet, but it also provides excellent exercise and mental stimulation for both of you. So grab your surfboard and your pup, and let’s get into the exhilarating world of dog surfing.

Step 1: Introduce Your Dog to the Water

Before your dog can become a surfing pro, they need to feel comfortable in the water. Start by introducing them to shallow water where they can wade and get their feet wet. Use positive reinforcement techniques such as treats and praise to help them associate water with a positive experience. Gradually increase the depth of the water as your dog becomes more confident.

Step 2: Familiarise Your Dog with the Surfboard

Next, it’s time to introduce your dog to the surfboard. Start by placing the board on the ground and allowing your dog to sniff and investigate it. Use treats to create a positive association with the board, and gradually encourage your dog to climb onto it. Once they are comfortable sitting or standing on the board, reward them with praise and treats.

Step 3: Practice Balance and Stability

Surfing requires excellent balance and stability, so it’s essential to practise these skills with your dog on dry land before hitting the waves. Encourage your dog to stand on the surfboard while you gently rock it back and forth to simulate the motion of the ocean. Use treats and praise to reward your dog for maintaining their balance.

Step 4: Hit the Waves

Now that your dog is comfortable with the water and the surfboard, it’s time to hit the waves! Start in shallow water where the waves are small and gentle, and gradually work your way up to larger waves as your dog becomes more confident. Hold onto your dog’s leash to guide them and provide reassurance as they navigate the waves.

Rob and Lani hitting the waves
Rob and Lani hitting the waves

Step 5: Safety First

Safety should always be your top priority when teaching your dog to surf. Invest in a properly fitted doggy life jacket to ensure your dog stays safe in the water. Additionally, never force your dog to surf if they seem anxious or uncomfortable. Take things at their pace, and always be ready to call it a day if your dog isn’t enjoying the experience.

Teaching your dog to surf is a fun and exciting adventure that can strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend. By following these steps and being patient and supportive, you can help your dog become a surfing superstar in no time. So grab your surfboard, hit the waves, and enjoy making memories with your canine companion that will last a lifetime. Happy surfing!

Float Coat Dog Life Jacket by Ruffwear as seen on Trippy The Wonderdog
The Float Coat Dog Life Jacket by Ruffwear as seen on Trippy The Wonderdog

See the following youtube videos for a visual reference on how to teach your dog surfing:

  1. Teach your dog to surf with this 5 step simple guide
  2. Dog Surfing Lesson
  3. Teach your Dog to Surf in 3 Easy Steps

Looking for other activities to do with your dog? See this blog article on how to train yourself and your pooch to run 5km

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