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Goal: 35,000 Progress: 20,111
Sponsored by: The Animal Rescue Site

The graceful beauty and power of a husky barreling through snow shouldn't invoke feelings of suffering and torture. But every year since 1973, during Alaska's 1,000-mile Iditarod race in early March, hundreds are forced into a state-sanctioned nightmare.

The Iditarod has long been controversial for its treatment of sled dogs. They're whipped and driven to run more than 100 miles a day in sub-zero temperatures. And while the power to keep those dogs safe lies with the State of Alaska, exemptions are actually in place precluding the dogs from protection under animal cruelty laws.

Hardly an Iditarod has been held in which a dog did not die.

In almost all of the Iditarod races, at least one dog death has occurred. According to the Sled Dog Action Commission, at least 147 dogs have died in the history of the race, with 15 to 19 falling dead from overwork in the very first, 43 years ago. At least 107 dogs were dead after the 1997 race, as reported by the Anchorage Daily News at the time. In 2009, five dogs died, leaving local veterinarians and animal rights workers helpless to do anything but watch.

"Last year, three dogs died. That is near the average for the Iditarod, and the causes of two of the 2008 deaths were quickly obvious," the Alaska Dispatch News reported the gruesome state of the race in 2009. "One dog was struck and killed by a snowmachine. The other had at some point during the race spit up intestinal fluids and then inhaled them. It was dropped at a checkpoint along the trail and flown back to Anchorage only to die here of what is called 'aspiration induced pneumonia.'"

The dogs that aren't killed by machines are killed by the effects of hyperexhaustion as they burn over 12,000 calories a day, for 9 straight days or longer. Their bodies are later tossed into the dump.

“That first race (1973), from Anchorage to McGrath, all you could see along the trail was dog blood and dead dogs," McGrath, AK resident Ted Almasy told the Wasilla Frontiersman 1986. "That's when I got into it with them. After each Iditarod, we used to see dead dogs at the dump. You’d see them poor dogs, blood coming out of both ends.'”

This is not how these dogs deserve to live.

Sign below and tell the Governor of Alaska to remove the clause exempting competition sled dogs from its animal cruelty laws.

Sign Here






To the Governor of Alaska,

There is overwhelming support by the people of your state and of the rest of the country, to end the needless deaths carried out every year at the hands of the Iditarod Race. The same animal cruelty protections afforded to the animals in our homes should be extended to the sled dogs of this race. There is simply no excuse not to.

The graceful beauty and power of a husky barreling through snow shouldn't invoke feelings of suffering and torture. But every year since 1973, during Alaska's 1,000-mile Iditarod race in early March, hundreds are forced into a state-sanctioned nightmare.

The Iditarod has long been controversial for its treatment of sled dogs. They're whipped and driven to run more than 100 miles a day in sub-zero temperatures. And while the power to keep those dogs safe lies with the State of Alaska, exemptions are actually in place precluding the dogs from protection under animal cruelty laws.

Hardly an Iditarod has been held in which a dog did not die.

In almost all of the Iditarod races, at least one dog death has occurred. According to the Sled Dog Action Commission, at least 147 dogs have died in the history of the race, with 15 to 19 falling dead from overwork in the very first, 43 years ago. At least 107 dogs were dead after the 1997 race, as reported by the Anchorage Daily News at the time. In 2009, five dogs died, leaving local veterinarians and animal rights workers helpless to do anything but watch.

"Last year, three dogs died. That is near the average for the Iditarod, and the causes of two of the 2008 deaths were quickly obvious," the Alaska Dispatch News reported the gruesome state of the race in 2009. "One dog was struck and killed by a snowmachine. The other had at some point during the race spit up intestinal fluids and then inhaled them. It was dropped at a checkpoint along the trail and flown back to Anchorage only to die here of what is called 'aspiration induced pneumonia.'"

The dogs that aren't killed by machines are killed by the effects of hyperexhaustion as they burn over 12,000 calories a day, for 9 straight days or longer. Their bodies are later tossed into the dump.

“That first race (1973), from Anchorage to McGrath, all you could see along the trail was dog blood and dead dogs," McGrath, AK resident Ted Almasy told the Wasilla Frontiersman 1986. "That’s when I got into it with them. After each Iditarod, we used to see dead dogs at the dump. You’d see them poor dogs, blood coming out of both ends.'”

Governor, this is not how these dogs deserve to live, and I demand that the State of Alaska remove the clause exempting competition sled dogs from its animal cruelty laws.

Sincerely,

Petition Signatures


Oct 21, 2017 Keith Michelen
Oct 21, 2017 Jennifer Kanady COME ON AMERICA!! BREAK THEIR CHAINS! DO NOT EXCLUDE SLED DOGS FROM FREEDOM! EVERYONE needs to know The Iditarod Is INSANELY CRUEL and as Americans we should be ASHAMED to promote such CRUELTY. SHUT THIS RACE OF DISGRACE DOWN!!!!
Oct 21, 2017 Lisa Murphy
Oct 21, 2017 Ashley Keith You cannot have a humane sport when the animal athletes are specifically exempted from the state's anti-cruelty statutes and afforded no protections.
Oct 21, 2017 kim martin This is a cruel barbaric sport that should have been outlawed before it ever started so many years ago. You are killing these precious dogs for sport. this is pure premeditated murder. STOP IT NOW
Oct 21, 2017 Stella Maris Martinez Stop this crudelty
Oct 20, 2017 Monica Preis
Oct 20, 2017 Rev. Cat Cassidy Enough. No animal deserves to die for entertainment. None. Ever. This is enough. Sled dogs must be protected under animal cruelty laws.
Oct 20, 2017 Patricia Gillespie
Oct 20, 2017 (Name not displayed) Remove the clause exempting competition sled dogs from its animal cruelty laws.
Oct 20, 2017 Diana Whitt These are dogs, animals, and DESERVE the same protections as we give to other animals by law, not exempted from those protections.
Oct 20, 2017 (Name not displayed) This is a cruel and barbaric treatment of God's beautiful creatures for profit. This is ridiculous and should be stopped immediately!!
Oct 20, 2017 (Name not displayed) This is a cruel sport. These dogs are beaten, not taken care of in the elements, lonely, not treated like they should, just for prize money. The Iditarod should be banned and the dogs given warm homes and treated wonderful like they should be treated!!
Oct 20, 2017 Brett Ferguson
Oct 20, 2017 Cary Bahr No dogs should be exempt from animal cruelty laws however I think this is an exaggeration of how they are treated as I have own and ran sled dogs they are amazing athelets no different than marathon runners.they are not forced to run its genetics
Oct 20, 2017 Lisa Ferguson
Oct 20, 2017 Linda Weaver
Oct 20, 2017 Chrissy Sanchez
Oct 19, 2017 Winifred Boyd
Oct 19, 2017 Lois Freeman
Oct 19, 2017 Ann Bertens
Oct 19, 2017 Louise Gross
Oct 19, 2017 Ingrid Heckl
Oct 19, 2017 Lynne Pateman
Oct 19, 2017 Regilyn Ewangan
Oct 19, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Oct 19, 2017 Alson Sachs
Oct 19, 2017 Ronald Brogan
Oct 18, 2017 Susanna Pohto
Oct 17, 2017 LOUISE MOORE
Oct 17, 2017 Pamela Ierubino
Oct 16, 2017 Sue Coughlin
Oct 15, 2017 Jennifer Reed
Oct 15, 2017 Liliana Elliot
Oct 15, 2017 Elizabeth Cutrofello Despicable abuse!
Oct 14, 2017 Karl-Heinz Braun
Oct 13, 2017 Paula Keenum
Oct 13, 2017 Krystal Burroughs
Oct 12, 2017 bobbette bross
Oct 12, 2017 andree luron
Oct 11, 2017 kaydee lewis
Oct 11, 2017 Julie Reid
Oct 10, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Oct 10, 2017 Sandra Taylor
Oct 10, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Oct 10, 2017 Roberta Cahill
Oct 10, 2017 Laura Prohaska
Oct 10, 2017 Roshanak Orlov
Oct 10, 2017 Karrie Vukelic
Oct 10, 2017 Brian Gottejman

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