The Latest: Official cites no lack of care in Iditarod death
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on the death of a dog during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race (all times local):
The race marshal for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race says there was no evidence of lack of care surrounding the death of a dog on Thursday.
Mark Nordman says in a statement that every dog death is investigated “to the fullest.”
He also says it’s unfortunate that musher Katherine Keith has had dogs die in the last two Iditarod races, both of suspected problems from pneumonia. But he says he can find no fault in how Keith cares for her team.
A necropsy is planned on the dog that died Thursday.
The cause of death last year for Keith’s dog Flash was consistent with acute aspiration pneumonia.
Tracy Reiman, with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said mushers are “using and abusing dogs” in pursuit of purse money.
Alaska musher Katherine Keith has had dogs die in the last two Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Races, both of suspected problems from pneumonia.
The latest dog, a 5-year-old male named Blonde, died early Thursday. A necropsy will be performed.
The cause of death last year for Keith’s dog Flash, a 4-year-old male, was consistent with acute aspiration pneumonia.
Five canine deaths connected to the nearly 1,000-mile (1,609 kilometer) race across Alaska last year prompted protests from animal rights activists complaining that dogs are forced to run a hundred miles (160 kilometers) a day.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals on Thursday said Blonde’s death pinpoints why the Iditarod must end. It also has called for the Iditarod to release veterinary records of every dog dropped from this year’s race.