Musher Stories

If You “Mush” Know: Summer Diets

This month’s question comes from….. Abby What do the dogs eat in the summer? Is it different than during the racing season?   What is on the menu for sled dogs? What a sled dog eats is very important to their performance year round.The dogs’ diet affects their overall health, muscle development, and ability to …

If You Mush Know: Run, Snack, Love

This month’s question comes from: Jack What do the dogs do when a big race like Iditarod is over? What do they do when they get home? What’s next? The Iditarod teams have completed 823 miles of running on the Gold Trail Loop as a team and have navigated tough trail sections and overcome many …

If You “Mush” Know: How Big are Sled Dogs?

This month’s question comes from….. Grant: How big do sled dogs get? Do they have to be a certain size to race?   Willingness and Heart   Sled dogs come in many sizes with mushers’ preferences ranging from larger dogs with muscular strength to smaller quicker runners. Martin Buser, 4 time Iditarod champion, once wrote, …

If You “Mush” Know: Poop Scooping

This month’s question comes from….. Every kid in America:  What happens if the dogs have to go to the bathroom? Do you have to stop and scoop it up?    Chocolate Kisses and Goggles   Excitement echoes in the kennel as the dogs, supreme canine athletes, are getting ready to do what they love – …

If You “Mush” Know: Stopping a Team

This question comes from Mrs. Dagenais’ Class in Baltimore: How does a musher stop their team of sled dogs? Gary Paulsen describes in Dogteam the beauty of a winter night run with a team of dogs pulling the sled taking you on a wonderful ride along a trail. Paulsen shares the beauty of the energy …

If You “Mush” Know: Places in the Team

This Month’s Question:  How do you decide which dog goes where in a team? Can they change places? The sled dogs make a team. A team includes the leaders, the team dogs, and the wheel dogs. Like a coach of a team like soccer or basketball, I as the musher want to know my dogs …

Painter and Ugly: Friendship at the Jr. Iditarod

  One of the special benefits of the Jr. Iditarod is that the young mushers bond with each other in a unique and lasting way.  In the woods at Yentna Station, after taking great care of their dogs for the night, they bonded over a campfire and shared trail stories.  It was remarkable to see, …

Virtual Fieldtrip

We had a chance to take a virtual fieldtrip to Windy Creek Kennel, home and kennel of Ken Anderson.  Ken completed his rookie race in 1999 and has run consecutively since 2002.  He’s had five top ten finishes and has finished twelfth in the last two races.  He has always finished in the top twenty …

Catching Up with Monica

We had the chance to catch up with Monica Zappa via Skype last week!  She joined us from her home to tell us about “life after Iditarod!”  The boys were so excited to talk to her and had some great questions for her.  She even introduced us to Dweezil, the superstar puppy!  Dweezil has become …

A Magical Day!

The Ceremonial Start of the 2014 Iditarod has been completed.  Mushers and teams are doing their last minute chores and hopefully getting a good night’s rest before tomorrow’s restart.  Tomorrow it starts for real, but today was all about the atmosphere, the fans, the celebration and the fun – for mushers, friends, family, fans, and …