Very observant readers might have noticed how I have gradually reduced the number of dogs up here at the hermitage.
I am going to be a father, it seems. Obviously I have been rather cavalier about some of the more traditional aspects of hermitdom.
I can't run dogs and take care of a family while doing justice to all.
I have not gone into detail about distributing the dogs to better futures, because if I think about this too much I get hopelessly maudlin.
Mazunte, pictured above and below, is getting a human all to himself today. So far, giving away dogs used to living outdoors in a pack has been a success. They know how lucky they are to spend time indoors with amazing amounts of quality time with humans, and prove themselves very loyal to their new owners.
It doesn't work that well the other way around. A dog used to being somebody's only dog will get traumatized by joining a pack. Many mushers have stories about how their first dog went nuts once other dogs entered the picture. Better leave spoiling to the second part of life, when it will be appreciated.
I am going to try to not extrapolate too heavily from my mushing experience when it comes to child rearing. But once you got this stuff in your bones, it's hard to get rid of it.