Meet Spitty, the Whippet Who Holds Five World Records

Longreads

For Outside, Christopher Solomon profiles the little-known sport of dock diving and one incredible athlete who already has five world records under his belt, or rather, collar: a 5-year-old whippet named Spitfire, Spitty for short.

About 20 years ago, a marketing guy recruited some dogs to leap into the water as a time-filler during ESPN’s forgettable Great Outdoor Games. The diversion, though, was a hit. This, in retrospect, should not have come as a surprise to anyone. It is a truth universally acknowledged that no pleasure is so cheaply bought, and so unmarred by complexity, as the simple joy of seeing a dog hurl itself into a pond in pursuit of a slobbery stick. Science has proven the impossibility of the human brain to register self-pity, or maunder on about the generally sorry state of things, while in the presence of canine bellyflops.

Today, more than 1,000 dock-diving…

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