Canines hit the waves in surfing competition

(REUTERS) - You've heard the surfer phrase "Hang Ten"?

Well on a California beach recently it was more like "Hang 20".

Pooches and their owners hit the waves in Huntington Dog Beach outside of Los Angeles for the 7th Annual Surf City Surf Dog contest that ran from Sept 25 to Sept 27.

The canines were divided into four weight classes and judged on skills ranging from the length of their ride to their level of confidence.

Boxer Hanzo is a veteran and a crowd favorite. Eric Felland, Hanzo's owner, said, "That was a really fun, fun ride today. Really exciting to see the crowd get behind Hanzo. We had a really good time out there."

To develop a surfer dog, first they must love the water. Then comes balance, says James Wall, owner of Faith, a Pitbull Terrier."What we did was we took her to the bay area where it's calm water, put her on a board, got her used to the balance and slowly progressed into waves. And here she is now."

Some dogs had unusual techniques. (Riding backwards.)

Or got distracted doing "dog" things. (Chewing on cord while surfing.)

This entertaining furry surfing event is one of two held on the west coast.

The other, the Double-Dog Dare Surf Series, is held in San Diego.