During these risky times, the Iditarod has had to make some difficult decisions. The race will go on, but checkpoints have been moved to protect the villages. Teams will still get straw, Heet, and their drop bags as these are essential supplies for canines and humans alike. This is certainly a disappointment for village school children who LOVE to see the dogs come to town, but it’s necessary to keep everyone safe from the Corona Virus.
My friends from Lambrook School in Ascot, outside of London asked if the Iditarod is loud. When we dogs are in harness and all lined up to pull the sled, we howl, bark, and generally make noise. We can’t help it. We’re excited to get moving. As soon the the human in the sled pulls the snow hook and we can start running, we are silent. This is our job, it’s what we love to.do. When we arrive at a checkpoint for a short stay, our job is to lay down and get some rest, so the checkpoints are typically quiet until a team gets lined up to leave, then it starts all over again.; Awoooooo! I wish I was in harness running with a team down the trail – I LOVE being a sled dog!
Iditarod dogs burn over 12,000 calories a day so it’s important to have a lot of fat in their diet. The humans will vacuum pack different meats for the canines including chicken, beaver, pork bellies, and beef fat. Sometimes dogs get a quick snack of some kind of frozen meat, but when teams stop for a longer rest, mushers will get out the cook pot and cook a “stew” of meat and kibble. Mrs. O’Rourke’s second graders from New York – my personal favorite snack on the trail was the frozen salmon.
If you have a question, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Stay safe everyone!