These pets bring a whole new meaning to the word, "SurFUR."
Duke's OceanFest is an annual event held in Waikiki, Hawaii to honor the Hawaiian legend, Duke Paoa Kahanamoku. Known throughout the islands as being the best waterman that ever lived, Duke's legacy is celebrated with a week-long aquatic sporting festival.
The festival includes competitions in a number of popular ocean sports including surfing, stand up paddle boarding, and swimming. For the second year in a row, the event also celebrated a different breed of aquatic mastery.
Kono's Restaurant's "Going to the Dog's" SurFUR Competition was held on August 25 this year. Kuhio Beach in Waikiki went to the dogs when 15 four-legged surfers made their way to the shore. This year, however, dogs weren't the only surf animals ready to compete. The competition was open to pets of all kinds when Kama Da Pig and his feline friend, Kitty, joined the ranks of the surfing canines.
There was Luna, a ten-year-old Jack Russell mix, Hina Girl, a two-year-old pit mix, and a wave-riding shepherd/hound mix named Kahuna. Coming in as the smallest competitor, the eight-pound Pomeranian named Blue Horswill competed against Capone, an 110-pound mastiff.
Also included in the lineup was Abbie, a famous Australian Kelpie from California. Abbie was found abandoned on a roadside when she was a young puppy. She was rescued by Humane Society Silicon Valley and was later adopted by Micahel Uy.
Abbie was timid and scared, so Michael started taking his new friend to the beach to build her confidence. It was there that she discovered her love for surfing. She is the longest competing and most-awarded surfing dog in the country. She even holds two Guinness World Records.
The heats were stacked with serious competitors, but the atmosphere on the beach and in the water was abuzz with fun and excitement. Both human and canine spectators lined the shore to cheer on their favorite competitors.
Each heat allotted the surfing pets and their human companions 20 minutes in which to catch as many waves as they could. The winner of each heat would then advance to the finals.
After the preliminary heats were concluded, Kama Da Pig and Kitty, Abbie, and Blue Horswill came out on top.
Luna, Cosmo, and Hina received honorable mentions for impressive tandem rides with their human surfing partners.
Overall, the day was filled with fun entertainment for mammals of all kinds. All proceeds earned from the event will be donated to Poi Dogs and Popoki, a low-cost spay and neuter organization on Oahu.
Duke's OceanFest continues on through the week, and aspiring surf champions across the state will spend the year gearing up for next year's competition.