a little gathering of some new sleddies friends and a couple old friends - including one of the first sleddie friends I made back in 2012, SHREKKIE!
I met Mossy + Kit on Monday eve, and tonight I met their kennel mates Vinnie + Jo who were reuniting after not seeing each other for a bit. Apparently Vinnie and Jo are siblings of Casey who came into care back in April.
I don’t have much history on this group, other than they’ve come from Whistler, but they remind me of so many sleddies I’ve met in the past.
We met at a beautiful spot outside of town in a fully fenced area so the dogs could run and explore and relax. Experienced sleddies Shrekkie + Jasper didn’t have to show these guys how to have fun - all six of them were sniffing and running, checking in with the humans for treats and pets, then back to playtime. And Mossy - who was on a long line for his safety - even found a dead mouse to roll in.
It’s a sight that never gets old. There’s something incredibly special in being witness to a former sled dog running and playing and showing off that extra prance-y bounce they exhibit when not tethered to anything. It’s one of the many reasons I keep doing this.
Vinnie + Jo represent sleddies #182 + #183 that I’ve photographed.
I’m not sure what the future holds for the sled dog tour company Kit, Mossy, Vinnie + Jo came from. If they’ll continue to operate with Covid continuing to lurk about or if they'll be seeking homes for more dogs. And I wonder what the future holds for other sled dog tour operations, long distance racing kennels and operations that rely on the commercialization of their sled dogs. But I will keep featuring them as long as I can. I will keep sharing their faces and names to prove their existence. For as this project is just a small representation of former sled dogs in a small area of the west coast of Canada, I can’t help but imagine what this project would look like if I travelled across the country, the continent, the world - photographing former sled dogs. What that pool of diversity would be like. The stories from rescues and shelters, fosters and adopters. Proving existence to even more names and faces.
For now, I will continue to stick close to home and keep sharing the stories to help educate, advocate and remind people that sled dogs are dogs - just as deserving of love, care and compassion as the dogs we share our homes with.
Thank you to all the fosters and adopters who helped make this gathering happen.
If you're interested in adopting Kit, Mossy, Vinnie or Jo, please visit www.victoriahumanesociety.com
Update- June 30/20: Vinnie has since been adopted and Jo has a pending adoption!
As former sled dogs in the Whistler, BC area, sleddies Kit + her brother Mossy have been given the chance at retirement and are new into care with Victoria Humane Society.
The two came to my house for about an hour the other evening (with Kit's foster brother Jasper) for a wee photo session and they were so gentle and lovely, albeit a little stressed from all the recent changes after coming into care. Mossy (short for Maserati) - who is basically blind - sniffed, pooped, had some treats (very gently) and then ended up laying down and falling asleep. And Kit (as in the car from Knight Rider - are you seeing the litter theme?), stopped looking for an escape route long enough to chill for a spell. Neither gave any mind to the camera, which is odd, because they're so photogenic and give amazing head tilts and ear lifts!
At 8(ish) years old, these two will need time to decompress and continue their introduction to life inside a home and all the newness that entails while learning that they can have ALL the comforts they desire - at their own pace. And although they're buddies, the won't need to be adopted together.
After years working for humans, it's time for humans to work for them.
Thank you to Jillian + Deb for bringing these lovelies over and Jasper for being such a awesome fella - sorry about the squeaky sounds.
Mossy is #180 + Kit is #181 in my collection of former sled dog photos. You can view the full gallery here.