TODAY   |  January 31, 2014

It’s ‘ruff’ going as dogs compete on TODAY plaza

In preparation for the 16th annual Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge, trainer John Casey brings a few competitors to the TODAY plaza to display their skills.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> we want to tell you that the super bowl is not the only big event coming up this weekend.

>> that's right. the nation's most talented dogs are going to be featured in the 16th purina pro plan incredible dog challenge. we've got a trainer, john casey here, with some four-legged friends. john, where are you?

>> right here.

>> john, tell us about the competition. this is fun.

>> purina pro dog incredible dog challenge finals which airs on nbc this sunday combines all the cool dog sports like the high-flying, freestyle- flying disk dogs. what i call the craziest 40-yard dash in canine sports. that's jack russell hurdle racing . the dogs launch out into a 19,000-gallon swimming pool trying to achieve maximum distance. and i believe we'll try to have a little fun with agility today.

>> i have one here with the red leash. is that mine?

>> does size matter? because there's little difference here.

>> in the sport of canine agility, we do have large dog an small dog divisions but today it is all about having fun .

>> what do we do?

>> we just cheer them on.

>> professional trainers here with the dogs. but you guys are assign each dog. this is kind of your teammate here.

>> so we cheer them.

>> cheer them on and they'll definitely appreciate that.

>> should we get started?

>> you can go first.

>> you want to go first, natalie?

>> i don't know. he just kind of lined up. i assume it is a he. let's go?

>> this is tiki. a little papillon. don't let her diminutive size fool you. three, two, one -- go!

>> come on, tiki!

>> let's go! come on tiki!

>> wait a minute. she didn't go through any --

>> she would get some fault points if this were a sanctioned competition.

>> this is moon?

>> this beautiful dog right here is a 7-year-old border collie who goes by the name moon. we're going to go three, two, one, go!

>> oh! oh! moon!

>> well done! wow!

>> my dog is chomping at the bit.

>> this is rampage.

>> come on, rampage. 4-year-old australian- cattle dog mix.

>> rampage, try to go through the things. all right?

>> here we go. on the count -- three, two, one -- go.

>> come on, rampage!

>> rampage is perfect so far!

>> he's listening to you.

>> rampage! yeah!

>> efficient. not so speedy, but very efficient.

>> all right.