Working in the Water!

Working in the water is what your Portuguese Water Dog was meant to do, it is right there in it’s name!

The PWD was bred to work. His body is strong and robust, his tail thick and powerful for steering in the water and his toes are actually webbed to assist with swimming.

Though porties are no longer used to assist fishermen, water trials were specifically designed to test skills reminiscent of the breed’s working history. Dog and handler are asked to perform tasks such as swimming, boarding a boat, jumping from a boat to retrieve, courier between boats, and retrieving items both in and out of the water. Handler and dog work as a team and are judged on ability to perform increasingly difficult tasks.

Blackwater PWDs out of Georgia has produced a wonderful series of videos showing each level of Water Work.

Getting Started

In Alberta a great way to get started with Water Work is to attend our APWDC Water Camp. Camp is held early in the summer to prepare you for trial later in the season.

The Portuguese Water Dog Club of Canada publishes a Water Trial Manual which describes the rules of each level in a water trial.