Fuzzy Guppies

Developing your Furry Paddle Partner

Fuzzy Guppies wrote 1012 days ago:

A growing interest in the world of paddling today is bringing along that four legged family member. Kayaking has always been very therapeutic, as has the love and companionship of that special pup, but putting them together brings the experience to a whole other level. However this peaceful bliss, can be a horrible process if not completed correctly. There is nothing relaxing about a scared, trembling dog circling around the boat, jumping in and out of the water, and then better yet, wet dog on your lap. The correct route to success is a patient one. Dogs do not understand the concept of balance and floating on the water, so taking the time to make sure they understand they are safe, is very important. This is best done on land, with the kayak braced, and allowing your pup to walk around and on the boat, making sure they know they are safe. This process takes a while for them to feel completely comfortable and not afraid of the boat, however it is an essential first step in the process.

After your pup has become comfortable with the boat itself, it is time to get in the boat with them, still on land, and making the boat wiggle again and again, allow the pup to gain its balance and become used to the movements of the boat. This is a annoy step in the process, your pup will jump off the boat, a lot, and there will be a lot of moving around and circling the boat. Please get yourself used to the sound of your pup whimpering and/or crying. Make sure you are using encouraging words and a calm voice throughout this process. It is also important during this phase to figure out the best position for your riding buddy while on the water, is there enough room in front of you for the pup to sit or lay down without getting in the way of your paddle stroke? What about behind your seat? Every kayak and dog is different, finding the perfect layout for the boat before hitting the water is very important to make sure the boy and yourself, are comfortable. Personally in my Jackson Kilroy, there is a perfect amount of room in front for my favorite paddling buddy.

When it becomes clear that your pup is comfortable on the boat, it is time to hit the water. If these steps are followed correctly, you will have the perfect riding companion for your kayak. Remember, it is important to have patience during this process and understand that your pup does not understand what is really going on; they just feel the ground moving underneath them. I hope this helps you in your process of getting you pup ready for the water, it is important to do these steps, and not rush them, or else your pup will associate your kayak with a scary experience.

**Special note** Your pup doesn’t understand the premise of going to the bathroom in the water, so if you believe they went to the bathroom while jumping overboard, it did not happen… please make sure you go to shore at least every few hours so your pup isn’t uncomfortable.

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Fuzzy Guppies

2014 Seneca Monster paddle race

Fuzzy Guppies wrote 1565 days ago:

Fuzzy Guppies Hosts the first ever Seneca Monster paddle race in the Finger Lakes

Fuzzy Guppies Hosts the first ever Seneca Monster paddle race in the Finger Lakes

Some residents of Waterloo might have been surprised over the weekend when they saw dozens of high-tech canoes and kayaks bounce through town on the shoulders of running race participants. It was part of the first annual Seneca Monster canoe and kayak race, a thirteen mile non-stop canoe and kayak race. To get around the lock in Waterloo, the paddlers ran half a mile through the Village of Waterloo to a put-in on the far side of the lock.

Paddlers from all over New York, twenty-six in all, jumped in their canoes and kayaks Sunday and enjoyed the fall colors, though at a much faster pace than the casual paddler. A few boats chose a more leisurely four mile paddle west from the event host’s docks at Fuzzy Guppies around an island in the canal called Adventure Island, and back. One boat that took an especially winding route

The event was organized by local marathon paddler Jeff Hogue and sponsored by Fuzzy Guppies, a local canoe and kayak shop in Waterloo owned by Norbert Hausner and managed by Justin Hausner. The Seneca County Sheriff’s Marine Patrol, Fuzzy Guppies staff, and volunteers were on hand to ensure the safety of the racers.

“The Seneca-Cayuga canal is an ideal place for a marathon paddling event,” said race organizer and local paddler Jeff Hogue. “It is beautiful when the leaves are changing, and there are lots of great places for spectators to view the race.” Hogue said canal races in other parts of the country can attract hundreds and even thousands of spectators. “Every racer I talked to said they loved the course, and told me to expect a bigger turnout next year. You have to prove the location and course are worthy the first year, and we did that.”

The winners of the first Seneca Monster Canoe and Kayak race were Ben and Michael Schlimmer, who completed the thirteen mile course in a blazingly fast 1 hour and 50 minutes. The fastest solo paddler was also a Schlimmer, Theresa Schlimmer, who completed the course in 2 hours and 38 minutes. More results and photos from the event are available at senecamonster.com

“The Seneca Monster brings a different and intense view of our portion of the canal. We are excited to partner with this event, hopefully to grow the event in the years to come,” said Justin Hausner, of Fuzzy Guppies: Human Powered Watercrafts in Waterloo, NY. “Everyone that played a part in this event should be very proud. We can’t wait for next year’s race.”

Marathon canoe and kayak racing is a low impact but demanding endurance sport. Technique makes a huge difference. Fit, wiry racers well past retirement age often post better times than younger paddlers with less experience. Many classes exist, depending on the size and shape of the boat. “Stock” classes allow people without fancy race boats to compete on an even playing field. The serious racers, though, can be sponsored, compete for prizes, and paddle carbon fiber race boats that average paddlers would have a hard time keeping upright. Most use drink tubes so that they never have to even pause their rapid paddle strokes to take a drink.

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