Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Traffic was bitches and a musher today

video

Passed friend, neighbour and musher Thor on my way to work today. He's upgraded his rig from a motorless crossbike to a motorless ATV. That white dog is his new puppy. Seven months old but pulling good.

I have started to notice that the sound track on the videos I post here is almost always the same. This might either be attributed to coherence of vision or an absurd narrow-mindedness.

3 comments:

Andy in Germany said...

Nice video. I assume you were on a bike at the time?

I'm still dreaming about mushing one day. People keep telling me it's exploiting the dogs, but the look too darn happy to be exploited.

Before you ask, most people telling me this are not vegetarian.

Northmark said...

Ha ha, good point about meat-eaters concerned with animal exploitation.

Mushing CAN be exploitive, I guess. But most mushers live very closely with their dogs, which guarantees a good relationship between man and animal. It's very much like the relationship between thirteen year old girls and horses. And nobody gets good results by treating their dogs cruelly.

Of course there are mushers who get their priorities wrong. But I imagine the most common sin is not running the dogs enough, rather than running them too hard. I am certainly guilty of not being able to give my dogs the maximum amount of adventure.

Dog fatality in mushing is much lower than for humans running marathons. And sled dogs are by definition healthy, and not prone to obesity, diabetes etc.

Tthe dogs in question have been bred for ten thousand years to run and pull. It is, as you point out, all they really want.

The Germans have a good word for this, "funktionslunst", the joy or satisfaction animals feel doing what they're meant to do. For some dogs this means herding sheep (or children!), for others it means protecting property and livestock. For sled dogs it means running like crazy.

Northmark said...

And yes, I did film this from a bike! Am surprised at how it didn't turn out very shaky and jittery.