Here’s the report from Joyce, D.O.G.S.’s President and faithful booth maven:
Thanks to Britain Hill who sponsored a table for D.O.G.S. at the 15th Annual Northern New England Sled Dog Trade Fair held October 2 & 3 at the Hopkinton Fair Grounds in Contoocook. The weather was a little chilly for people but perfect for the dogs. What an amazing weekend. We saw so many beautiful dogs and talked to several people. We met people and dogs from all over New England as well as NY, PA, VA and NJ I had thought that sled dog sports would be limited to Siberian Huskies, Alaskan Malamutes, Inuit Dogs, Samoyeds, Alaskan Huskies & New Hampshire’s official state dog the Chinook but I was in for a surprise. I saw labs and other breeds going crazy to pull and run with their owners.
The weekend consisted of educational seminars on the dogs and their sports as well as a “Rig Race” on Sunday. This is a fun family sport that almost any age can participate in. There were young kids, teenagers and adults competing. We met someone who said his teenage daughter had been racing since she was a child. Any safe rig without an engine is acceptable in the race. There are mostly bikes in the first class of 1 – 2 dog pulling. Other wheeled rigs were used for the 2 -4 dog race and 5 – 6 dog race. It was exciting to watch the dogs work themselves into a frenzy waiting for their turn to run! The barking and crying while they waited was continuous. I had no idea how verbal these breeds were, it would be easy to carry on a conversation with any of these dogs.
If you have one of these breeds, a dog that loves to run and pull or would like more information in general about Bikejoring, Skijoring or Mushing you can contact the New England Sled Dog Club at: http://www.nesdc.org/, GCbarker@netzero.com
or the NH Mushers Association at http://www.nhmushersassoc.org/, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s an article I found while browsing for info.
For more pictures, please go to NH Pets Online.