Dogs compete in Surf-A-Thon, raise money for animal center

Helen Woodward Animal Center held its annual Surf Dog Surf-A-Thon on September 13. 

It’s the 15th iteration of the competition but like most events in 2020, it was a bit different due to social distancing requirements. While the competition usually sees thousands of fans and participants gathering at Del Mar Dog Beach, this year the event was largely virtual. 

However, with dog surfers from all over the world now allowed to compete, the Surf-A-Thon received 80 submissions from New York to Brazil and San Diego to Japan. 

The Surf-A-Thon kicked into gear in August, where dogs, in five weight classes, submitted their surfing videos to the animal center. A panel of judges awarded titles to the best surfers in each class and an overall champion. 

This year Sugar, a rescue who has 25 surfing awards, took home the championship title reports Associated Press. Second-place was granted to 5-year-old Labrador Charlie Surfsup, while Surf Gidget the Pug nabbed third. Voting was open to the public to determine the “People’s Choice Surfing Dog” award which also went to Surf Gidget the Pug with 4,000 votes.

The Surf Dog Surf-A-Thon raised thousands of dollars to support pets and programs at the Helen Woodward Animal Center. The judging panel included Sunshine Makarow, long-time Surf Dog judge and founder of Surf Life for Women magazine, Mark Richards, life-long surfer and Lisa Scarpa, a surf aficionado and dog mom

If you enjoyed this story, you might want to read about this golden retriever pup that insisted on walking her big brother.

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