Sunday, 5 April 2009

dog mushing in Russia

Hackpacker is in Russia. His home is here in Melbourne, Australia, but he's on the move right now and blogging about his travels, which two days ago included a trip by dog sled.

Hackpacker included a link to a dog-sledding site and I checked out the photos, but the text is presumably in Russian. (I once spent six months studying Russian but I'm embarrassed to admit I didn't even learn enough to be sure this text is Russian.)

Hackpacker also includes a link to
the story of Nicholas Vanier, a modern day adventurer who took a team of dogs from Baikal all the way to Moscow and almost froze to death several times in Siberia.

But it's in French. (Okay, time to admit I did SIX years of French at high school and can't remember much - but that's over forty years ago, so I reckon I have an excuse this time.) However, I did find a text in English that seems to be on the same topic. Here's a site by the energy company that supported Vanier's dog expedition.

And here's a site that is highly critical of Vanier's treatment of his dogs. Which got me thinking about other dog sled events and I came across the Yukon Quest page describing the level of veterinary care dogs receive in this event.

It does seem that one man travelling eight thousand kilometres would have trouble providing this level of care.


Hackpacker said...

Thanks for linking through, parlance. Apologies for the number of foreign language links.
Vanier's treatment of dogs is disturbing. I'll add a comment to your link so people can make up their own minds on it.
What are your thoughts on canine cross: ? I'm unsure on how safe it is.

parlance said...

Hackpacker, I'd never heard of canine cross before. It's an interesting link. I think I'll have a look around and see whether anyone I know on the Net is doing it. And I' going to ask the two dog-trainers I know.

It seems to involve the dog pulling the human, with a bungee-type lead, so I guess in that respect it's somehow related to tracking, where the dog pulls the human. I think it looks basically safe for the dog, but I'd wonder whether humans might lose their balance.