Not even winning mushers can afford average dog care

Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Re: "Like father, like sons: Mackey family sets record" (March 14, Clarion)

Mr. Mackey complains that Iditarod mushers who finish in the back of the pack don't make enough to support themselves and their dog farms. For some, this might be an argument for increasing the prize pot, but for dog lovers it's a reason to think that the state should place strict limitations on the number of dogs mushers can have.

Imagine how much it costs to provide one dog with even average care. There's the cost of food, flea preventatives, shampoo, heart worm medication, rabies shots, teeth cleaning, etc. Now, multiply that number by the 50, 100 dogs or more that mushers have. The costs would skyrocket if just one dog gets sick.

Who believes that even the big Iditarod prize winners can afford average dog care? When does lack of adequate care become animal abuse?

Margery Glickman, director

Sled Dog Action Coalition


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