I usually focus on the 'after' stories of sled dogs, but I feel the need to share a video because of its relation to the bigger picture of what the Iditarod 1000-mile race means for the dogs.
I shared this post to the facebook page after commenting on the original video shared by Humane Mushing, who's in Alaska documenting what she sees:
"Even though the dogs have (what look to be) leashes attached, they still get dragged by their collars... it's no wonder so many of the former sled dogs I've met have issues when it comes to collaring, harnessing, and being handled.
Time is $$$.
If people saw their neighbours handling their dogs like this, or knew their neighbour forced their dog to run so far and fast they choked on their own vomit and died, they'd be reported to the authorities, but because of a skewed idea of history, animal protection laws are different for sled dogs so it's "ok" for 'sled dogs' (really, just mixed-breed dogs that are used to pull a sled) to be handled and treated this way.
Everything about this video - and the others you've been sharing while being witness to this f'ing awful race - show nothing but stress and stressful situations for the dogs and abhorrent cruelty.
The spectators along with the organizers, sponsors, mushers and everyone involved in supporting this are complicit in this cruelty."
Welcome to Alaska. Where dogs used for pulling sleds (as well as animals used in rodeos) are exempt from the same laws and protections afforded dogs who don't pull sleds.
This has to change and it's up to us to help change the laws and the minds of those who think and believe these dogs are somehow inherently different than the dogs we share our homes with.
If you'd like to view the video, you can find it here: