Fly High: Story of the Disc Dog
The notion of man’s best friend being more than such may be unimaginable to some but to an increasing number of dog owners throughout the world, dogs are so much more. Fly High: Story of the Disc Dog will explore the history of the rapidly growing sport of Canine Flying Disc in the canine competition world. The film will chronicle the history of this young sport and follow the progress of dogs and handlers as they strive to become world-class athletes.
Canine Flying Disc combines the finesse of Canine Musical Freestyle, Agility, Obedience with the skills possessed by world-class Freestyle Frisbee competitors, but in a new avenue. The dog/human teams use canine-specific discs among other protective gear to perform high-flying, choreographed routines and go the distance in competition.
The Film’s Inspiration
Riding the wave of the Frisbee® craze, it was only a matter of time for the natural fit of man’s best friend and man’s new, favorite past-time. In 1974, a young college student from Ohio took his dog into a Los Angeles baseball stadium where he performed, unauthorized, on the field for several minutes in front of both a live audience and a massive television audience.
This young man was Alex Stein and his incredible Whippet, Ashley. Their act, which Alex was arrested for, would catapult a new sport into the lives of dog lovers around the country and, eventually, the world.
As an active competitor in the sport of canine disc, also known as freestyle flying disc, I became encouraged and fascinated with the origins of the sport and the story surrounding it. I believe one should understand the history of any activity they choose to be a part of and this sport was no different.
While the sport was approaching its fortieth anniversary, it became apparent that our sport’s history was limited in its availability and output. The last remaining copies of Irv Lander’s Ashley Whippet book were becoming scarce and our original competitors and front-runners aren’t getting any younger. I took it upon myself to dedicate the next few years of my life producing, directing and editing a film that would capture the spirit of why we all continue to play the game with our beloved dogs.