• 39°

Dogs, owners dance together with Canine Co-Motion

As members of Canine Co-Motion Freestylers, Ann Whatley and her dog Dusty dance together. They are ready to perform "Splish, Splash. I Was Taking a Bath." (CONTRIBUTED)
As members of Canine Co-Motion Freestylers, Ann Whatley and her dog Dusty dance together. They are ready to perform “Splish, Splash. I Was Taking a Bath.” (CONTRIBUTED)

MADISON – One of the world’s fastest growing dog sports, as seen on “America’s Got Talent” and “The Tonight Show,” delighted the audience at the Madison Street Festival.

Alabama’s only freestyle club, the Canine Co-Motion Freestylers performed in “freestyle,” a choreographed routine set to music for a dog and its owner.

Owners train solely with positive reinforcement. “We don’t ask our dogs to do any tricks/moves that make them uncomfortable,” Ann Whatley said.

Whatley and her dog Dusty performed “Splish, Splash. I Was Taking a Bath.” Other routines included “Yellow Brick Road,” “Pink Panther,” “Car Wash” and “Camp Granada.”

The club originated after Carol Pearce and Jody Cook, Huntsville Obedience Training Club members, competed in the World Canine Freestyle Organization and eventually offered classes.

“People smile when they see us with our dogs. They ask questions about training and care. The more educated the public is the fewer abandoned or aggressive dogs there will be,” Whatley said.

Originally just for fun, the club now gives venues for competition and public service.

Canine Co-Motion members are Andi Cobb with Sophia; Jody Cook with Spring, Oscar and Trip; Linda Freeman with Colby; Patricia Haag with Madison; Carol Kimble with Reese and Twinkle; Anne LaPointe with Kate; Marion Morris with Ghislaine; Brenda Murray with Sunny and Dusty; Cindy Payne with Zoe; Martha Reichold with Dare; and Nichelle Simon with Tobie.

Any non-aggressive dog with basic obedience skills can take freestyle classes. Owners train dogs daily for brief periods. “Dogs are smart and get bored with too much repetition,” Whatley said.

“Music should fit the dog’s personality first, then the trainer,” Whatley said. One member has a deaf dog that follows hand signals to dance.

“The dogs love it. (Owners) are a little bit crazy because we would do almost anything to see a smile on our dogs’ faces” Whatley said. The stress relief helps cancer survivors, senior citizens with arthritis and “young folks struggling to keep a job.”

Brenda Murray leads Canine Co-Motion.

For more information, email to brmurray@hiwaay.com or annwhatley@knology.net or visit HOTC.org.

Madison

ReadyFest returns to underscore need for preparedness

Madison

Winter Knights Chess Tournament sets record attendance

Harvest

Delta Sigma Theta plans exciting evening with ROUGE – A Go Red Event

Events

Burritt on the Mountain to host Shane Adkins for Coffeehouse Concert series

Bob Jones High School

Sponsors essential to achieving Madison Street Festival’s traditions

Madison

Registration opens to vie for seat in pre-kindergarten

Huntsville

Former doctor from Madison sued for overdose death

James Clemens High School

Donaldson piloting James Clemens as Acting Principal

Madison

Discovery of woman’s body in Hazel Green leads to investigation of possible murder-suicide

Huntsville

Rookie Rally Chess Tournament returns to Blossomwood

Huntsville

Arts Huntsville awards $280,000 in grants to area arts organizations

Bob Jones High School

Nichols’ podcast reflects on MCS’ 25th anniversary

Madison

Regions Bank on Madison Blvd robbed again

Madison

JAN. 20 DEADLINE: Madison Visionary Partners asking for nominations for first annual MVP awards

Madison

Damaging winds, flooding possible tonight

Madison

Community remembers Donald Spencer’s public service

Madison

Water main break postpones Bob Jones vs. Austin basketball games

Madison

Library sessions to offer backyard planting tips to novice gardeners

Madison

Editorial: King’s words speak to all

Madison

Petition for Madison special election on city manager issue submitted to probate judges

Bob Jones High School

Columbia Drama Club to perform ‘Aladdin Jr.!’ in Zompa Auditorium

Madison

Guillebeau reflects on his life in latest book, ‘My World, and Welcome to It’

Madison

Senator Tom Butler appointed chairman of Senate State Governmental Affairs Committee

Senator Tom Butler appointed chairman of Senate State Governmental Affairs Committee

Madison

NEIGHBORS: Limestone resident took cover in closet; many in county lost power

x