"These dogs are capable of jumping out of helicopters, into the ocean to rescue people," said club member Michelle Alpern, 38, of Valencia, who proudly watches her dog, Bailee, train every week.
"There's a lot of pressure on my dog," said Alpern
about the rigorous tasks that also calls for having the dogs swim under boats.
only one year old, just a puppy, but that's what they do."
On the weekend of Oct. 6, Bailee will join hundreds of other Newfoundland dogs from all over California at Castaic Lake where they will be tested for one of three levels of certification recognizing water rescue proficiency.
"The helicopter jumps are special and not done here.For us, the real work is done from the boat or from shore," Alpern
Although the big dogs are very docile and friendly, Alpern
says, volunteers in the training wear a long heavy protective glove in case the dog bites.
Emma Enticott, 30, of Valencia, whose dog Roxy walks daily with Bailee through North Park, joins Michelle Alpern
on Bailee's rescue training at Castaic.