A Kromfohrländer Dives Into Dog Sports!

Kromfohrländer dock diving

I was introduced to Kromfohrländers in December of 2020 when I stumbled across them in the list of breeds on the AKC website. Thus began several days of reading everything I could find on the Internet about them, jumping in Facebook groups, and getting on a breeder’s wait list within four days. It quickly became obvious to me that Kromfohrländers, or “Kromis,” though small in US numbers, were competing in many performance venues. With Agility and Scent Work being my primary focus sports, I very passionately wanted to try my hand at Dock Diving.

With Kromis being a companion breed (they love nothing more than being with their “people”) I found performance training to deeply enhance the bond. My Kromi also enjoys a variety of training methods and rewards, and sometimes treats, but on other days she’d rather have a party with lots of praise.

Kromfohrländer in the pool

Without any experience in Dock Diving, I set out to make a training plan that would create a happy and fun association with water and swimming in hopes that we could compete while training for a future in Agility. We started out simply—just a shallow kiddie pool with food and toy lures to get her feet wet. We did this for a few weeks, working up to lots of splashing and running towards the small pool. After full vaccination, I signed “Merin” up for recreation swimming lessons at our local indoor canine facility. The coaches there helped her gain confidence and made sure the water was always a safe place. The private swimming lessons continued every six weeks or so. Last spring, we started working at the local dock with the trainers there. Even with all this careful planning, Merin did not want to jump off the dock!

Kromfohrländer dock diving

My friend has two Border Collies that are experienced at Dock Diving, and Merin got along great with them. We opted to rent out our local dock for an hour to see if seeing her friends jump would be enough encouragement for Merin. Sure enough, she saw her friends jump off the dock and couldn’t let them have all the fun! We did a couple more dock rentals before she jumped in competition, and a new Dock Diving star was born!

In the off-season, Merin and I have been working on continuing our Agility training by taking classes two days a week. She is also working towards her Certificate of Merit in Conformation.

Kromfohrländer in Agility

I have definitely enjoyed getting to experience the camaraderie in the rare breed community. The experience with other FSS breeds has been extremely rewarding, as the rare breed community is small but very welcoming.

Living with a Kromfohrländer has been an experience quite different from the other breeds that have shared my life. They feel very deeply and care for their owners unwaveringly. They want to be with you—whether it is simple things like weeding the flower bed, snuggling during a movie, or training for various sports. As long as they are by your side, they are happy!

Natasha Wright with her Kromfohrländer

  • Natasha Wright has been competing in Performance Sports since 2012 and Conformation since 2018. Her first sport was Agility, followed by Scent Work, Fast CAT, Conformation, and most recently, Dock Diving. Natasha is currently serving as the Treasurer for the Kromfohrländer Club of America.

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