Dogs Forced to Pull Sleds Exempt From Legal Protection
What started out as a delightful excursion in nature together, turned into an outing of despair for one Canadian couple. They came upon the Windrift dog sled kennel north of Barrie, where they found dogs tethered outside, unable to seek warmth from the bitter, snowy cold, while surrounded by their own waste.
However, what they uncovered was more than one isolated case of cruelty. What they discovered, to their utter dismay, was that this heartbreaking scene is the legally protected reality for "working" dogs - not only in Canada, but in the United States as well. Basically, dogs forced to pull sleds, or "sled dogs" as they're labeled solely for their human given "purpose" have zero rights.
It seems that sled dogs are often talked about in ways that makes them sound robotic and unfeeling, as if they are not made of flesh and bone. They’re personified as creatures who are (somehow) immune to extreme cold and other harsh conditions. However, this couldn't be further from the truth.
The existence of this outlook is both proven and reinforced whenever citizens or an organization fight for stronger laws to protect dogs, as sled dogs and/or hunting dogs are exempt from protection in bill verbiage. This means they’re not protected from being tethered or subjected to extreme temperatures and conditions. Various entities lobby hard, not only to maintain this status quo but to stop any bills that have the potential to affect this aspect of animal use.
We know that all animals deserve protection against cruelty, so our federal Break The Chains Campaign has joined the efforts of Fern Levitt, the producer of the film, Sled Dogs and of Ashley Keith, of Humane Mushing, to increase the pressure to include working dogs under legal animal protections.
Please share our survey with professionals, such as veterinarians and canine behaviorists, so that we can collect mass feedback from experienced individuals. With their expert advice on the dangers of long term chaining and exposure to the elements, we hope to bring this barbaric treatment and endless suffering of working dogs to an end.