On a recent trip to the Omni Mt. Washington Resort in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, we looked into dog sledding. I have to admit that my kids had a thing for the movie Snow Dogs and probably watched it over 50 times; going dog sledding has always been on our wish list of activities.
We were so excited to give the summer dog sledding a try as one of the unique activities offered at Omni Mount Washington Resort. Unfortunately, the weather was over 75 degrees, too warm for the dogs to run. I spoke with Karen from Muddy Paws and she was kind enough to offer us a tour; I’m so glad she did as we all loved this activity.
Every once in a while, we stumble upon a hidden jewel while traveling that makes us look beyond our typical experiences and provides insight to something special. Muddy Paws is that type of experience.
When we decided to head over to Muddy Paws, we thought it was simply a dog sledding tour company — cool enough in it’s own right. What we learned, however, is that Muddy Paws serves as a non-profit rescue organization for mushing dogs. Walking into 114 dogs and their platforms is awe-inspiring!
Run Baby Run
Mushing dogs like huskies and malamutes need an incredible amount of care. First, they have their individual homes that include a platform and house. In addition, the amount of exercise these dogs need is crazy. In the winter they have to run 40-50 miles, four times a week and in the summer they run 15-20 miles, four times a week.
Do the math, the amount of time it takes to do that for 114 dogs is significant. This group is small with only eight employees, but runs big in heart, as these dogs all get such great care.
Karen literally led us up to each dog and we said hello to all of them. They are all friendly, with the exception of a couple new dogs that are shy. It is clean and the dogs are healthy.
The rescued dogs come from all over the United States. Either they are too old to mush competitively (some dogs were even Iditarod dogs) or the owner is not in a position to keep the team any longer, or an individual did not realize how much exercise these breeds need.
When we got there, there was a new team of six dogs from Minnesota. Over time, they find new homes for the dogs. Karen’s compassion and commitment to these dogs is evident. We all left feeling so grateful that there are people out there that dedicate themselves to this type of work.
If you are in the area of the White Mountains in New Hampshire, be sure to go for a dog sled ride, knowing that your money not only is paying for wonderful entertainment, but also helps so many beautiful dogs.
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