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article imageOtis the 'Skydiving Dog' makes 64th jump (video)

By Kim I. Hartman     Aug 19, 2011 in Lifestyle
Sacramento - Otis, the skydiving pug, recently completed his 64th tandem jump at a California airfield, tagging along for the ride with his owner Will DaSilva who is an accomplished skydiver and parachute rigger.
It was nine years ago when DaSilva, who works at Lodi Parachute Center, came up with the idea to take Otis up for his first parachute jump out of a skydiving company plane. "He talked to a parachute rigger who made a custom-fit harness for Otis, basically a papoose that hung loose around his chest, bought a pair of 'doggles,' goggles for dogs, and took the pug up for the low-altitude plunge he called a 'hop and pop' maneuver," according to the Sacramento Bee.
The dog loved it, "he's totally aware of what's happening when he free falls. Just like any first-time skydiver he gets all excited about it and gets nervous at the door," said DaSilva on the video tape of Otis' 64th jump. "Once he's out though he's just having a ball like a dog with its head out of the car window," he said.
DaSilva said "Otis grew up around the airport since he was a pup chasing airplanes and running to the landing area. He said they conducted the jump just like any other introductory jump," for a first-time skydiver.
He said he knows Otis likes to skydive because of the way the dog reacts to the plane and being fitted into his harness for the next jump. He compared it with taking Otis to the vet, which he doesn't like and will scramble to get away from DaSilva when it's time to visit the animal doctor.
DaSilva said he "isn't trying to prove anything" with Otis's skydiving attempts and that he isn't forcing him to do anything he doesn't want to do. He said he wouldn't do anything to harm to pug, "He's going to die of a food overdose, not from sky-diving," DaSilva told the Sac Bee.
Otis isn't the only skydiving pup that can found on YouTube. Bugsy the pug can be seen skydiving with his owner from a height of 10,000 feet in the video below.
More about Otis, Skydiving, Pets, Pug, 64 tandem jumps
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