Flying Dogs

Labor Day Weekend, 2015

Part I : Brandy and Daisy Practicing their Jumping Skills

Daisy (left) watching as Brandy (right) jumps in the Eno River.
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Photographing animals in action requires high shutter speeds: these photos were taken at speeds between 1/3200 and 1/8000 sec, using a Canon 1D Mark III professional camera fitted with an f/2.8 lens.  I photographed many jumps before getting the trophy shot above.  I found that there are three stages to each jump.  These stages are largely reproducible from jump to jump.

The first stage is the pre-launch, before the dog has fully stretched.  You can see that the pose matches well between these two shots, including the positioning of the ears and the tail, and even the facial expression (compare to later stages below):

The next phase is the launch itself, when the dog is fully stretched and ready to leave the ground:

The final stage is the fall, when the dog begins to prepare for contact with the water.  You can see that Daisy always puts her right paw forward to make first contact (I have many more images of this stage, and in every single one her right paw comes down first):

After finishing our jumping work, Brandy relaxed on her favorite log for some prolonged wood-licking.  She licks this very log every Saturday, without fail, and usually for a prolonged length of time.  She is a strange dog.  After that we walked back down the river, giving Brandy a chance to do her weekly Big Swim (a quarter-mile swim down the river to the dam).  Then the dogs did some relaxed jumping and fetching from the dam, with the local kiddies helping out with the stick-throwing:

Brandy likes to lick logs

Brandys Big Swim

Brandy jumping from the dam

Daisy jumping from the dam

Part II: Runkles Very First Swim

Karl and Elaines dog Runkle just turned 1 year old, and they wanted my dogs to teach him how to swim.  He needed very little instruction, and quickly became an expert in just one day... amazing!

In Memory Of: Kelsey the Amazing Dog (1997-2011)

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