Dancing with the…dogs?

Dogs compete in agility, obedience, tracking, conformation, and now dancing. Yes, you’ve read that right. Instead of Dancing with the Stars, we have dancing with the dogs competitions.

The International Dog Dancing Tournament was recently held in Freiburg, Germany. Dog parents from Germany and neighboring countries entered the contest with their four-legged companions.

The International Dog Dancing Tournament is held annually, and competitors — dogs paired with their humans — dance to a broad range of soundtracks from Rock ‘N’ Roll to Phil Collins. This year’s winner was Uni and Doris Mensch; Uni is a Poodle, and the pair danced to Nat King Cole’s “Dinner for One.”

Dance competitions are not new in Europe, and many animal shelters throughout the U.S. are hosting their own dancing dogs with the hopes of boosting adoptions. Four Legged Friends Foundation created Dancing with the Dogs contest where handlers and dogs perform dance steps in front of a panel of judges.

Pet parents who enter the competitions with their dogs spend a lot of time training for these events. There is even a Dogs Can Dance challenge. The World Canine Freestyle Organization has information on its website on dog dancing competitions.

Sources: The Guardian, Four Legged Friends Foundation, Dogs Can Dance, World Canine Freestyle Organization