Every two years, we humans gather around our TVs to watch the world’s best athletes compete in the summer or winter Olympic Games (did you know that there’s a meaning behind the Olympic rings?). We marvel at their speed and agility, completely unaware that our pets sitting on the couch next to us are just as athletic.
From their incredible sense of smell to their running speeds, dogs have superpowers that humans only dream of possessing. But they can’t show off their full athletic potential just by chasing thrown sticks in your backyard. That’s why dog food brand Eukanuba created the Eukanuba Performance Games, a four-day event that gives dogs the opportunity to become the furry Olympians they were born to be.
🏆 The 2017 Eukanuba Performance Games have concluded. We appreciate all of the attendees, handlers and canine competitors that made this year's games extraordinary–that includes the attendees who couldn't make it to the games this year but participated by viewing photos and videos on our Instagram channel. . Special thank you to @Pivotandheathen for creating this video wrap-up of her experiences at the last day of the #EukanubaGames! Go get it! . . . . #EukanubaGames #Eukanuba #Eukanubadogs #akc #updog #workingdog #workingdogs #nadd #akcsports #discdog #dockdiving #dockdivingdogs #dockdogs #northamericadivingdogs #nadd #dogsports
The inaugural games, which took place September 14–17 in Wilmington, Ohio, featured six competitive events: Fast CAT, a timed 100-yard dash; scent work to locate different odors; dock diving into a pool for long-distance jumping and retrieving objects; disc tossing; a barn hunt through a hay maze; and agility obstacle courses. When it was all over, 25 titles were awarded to the dog champions—and yes, winners did get ribbons.
🏆The 2017 Eukanuba Performance Games are well under-way! Click the link in our bio for more information. . Swipe left for coverage of some of today's events! . . . . @northamericadivingdogs @theupdogchallenge @eukanubafield #Eukanuba #EukanubaGames #Eukanubadogs #dogsofinstagram #petstagram #akc #updog #updogchallenge #nadd #akcsports #northamericadivingdogs #nadd #dogsports
Country music star and life-long dog lover Craig Morgan made a special appearance during the games to work with these canine athletes firsthand. Though he had a hard time choosing a favorite event—“it kinda depends on your mood”—he is always amazed at the scent work feats dogs are able to pull off with their noses.
“It’s funny when you think about the fact that a dog has the ability to identify everything from narcotics to human remains, through concrete even,” he said. “It’s just amazing. Having been in law enforcement, I have a great appreciation for those dogs.”
A U.S. Army veteran, Morgan saw dogs putting their abilities to work on a regular basis while he served, doing everything from defense to tracking down explosives. “These are lifesaving animals. They are just as much, probably as heroic as any of the soldiers we got to work with,” he said.
Morgan himself has two dogs, a Blue Nose Pit Bull named Creed and a part Husky, part Shepherd rescue dog named Fallon. They’re not among this year’s canine competitors, but he’s excited to get them in the running for the next Performance Games. Their strengths?
“Creed would definitely win the hot dog eating contest, or if there’s an awkward sleeping position contest, he would be the overwhelming champion,” Morgan said. “Fallon, if I spent a little time with her, she would probably be a dock diver. If she gets away from me, it’ll take me about seven days to find her. In five minutes, she can be eight miles away.”
In addition to prepping his dogs for their impending victories, Morgan will kick off his American Stories Tour later this month, featuring special music and military guests. He partnered with the non-profit Operation FINALLY HOME to provide mortgage-free homes to veterans and their families from select dates on his tour. Check out tour dates at craigmorgan.com.