Favorites

Interview With Ken Haggett From Peace Pups Dogsledding

Peaceful Dog Powered Sports & Guided Activities In North Central Vermont

Siberian husky sled dog smiling - Cosmodoggyland Interview Series Photo Credit: Natalie Siebers. Courtesy of Ken Haggett from Peace Pups Dogsledding

Peace Pups Dogsledding Tours offer unforgettable experiences through numerous dog sports and varied activities to explore at different times of the year. Smooth rides on Ken’s comfortable homebuilt sleds powered by his team of Siberian huskies, make these adventure tours a special treat for dog lovers of any age.



1. How and why did you get involved in mushing?

I have always had an interest in polar exploration and sled dogs. I remember going to a sled dog race when I was a child and, for some reason, it really made an impression on me. Back around 2000, my wife and I went to a dog sled race near our Vermont home and it was the first time I had seen skijoring. I left with the goal of learning how to skijor with my 5-year-old dog named Maura, whom we had adopted from a shelter. After a few weeks of trying to teach Maura to skijor, I realized that it probably was not going to happen. She was a wonderful frisky dog, but really had no interest in pulling me around on skis. That is when we decided to visit the shelter and see if there were any “real” sled dogs there for adoption. We brought Jake home a week later and the rest is history.

I would have to say that my main passion for mushing is really just spending time with the dogs. I enjoy my summer days when I am just hanging out with with them just as much as I do winter time when we are sledding. They are a very loving breed.

Capture memorable moments of any adventure! Share 360 degree footage with your friends.

2. What has mushing taught you about leadership?

My dogs have taught me that staying calm is an asset. If they sense that I am stressed about something, they will amplify that. I believe that is one of the biggest challenges for a musher. I have read many books about distance races, such as the Yukon Quest and the Iditarod, and I can see how the musher keeping it together in difficult times can be on of the hardest things to accomplish. If you stay upbeat and relaxed, then your dogs will be happy and enjoying their time out there with you.

3. How do you choose your dogs? 

I have never been very fussy about the dogs I have adopted. I cannot think of a time when I went to meet a new dog and did not come home with him/her. This is a dangerous character flaw and I have learned to stay far away from dog shelters! We have always had Siberian Huskies though. My first sled dog, Jake, was a Siberian and I just fell in love with the breed. Sometimes I wonder why, given their stubborn personalities, but there is just something about them that I connect with.

4. What is a “good” sled dog?

A good sled dog is a dog that loves to run and has a lot of energy. This is one of the things that can make they very challenging to have as pets if they do not have an outlet for that energy.

5. Can you please explain a little bit about the breeding process?

We have only had two litters in the 16 years that we have been involved with dogsledding. We have chosen not to breed, because we feel that there are plenty of dogs out there already that need good homes. That said, there really is nothing like the bond you have with a dog that you have been with since its first breath. We do not sell puppies and the pups we had from our two litters will live their entire lives here with us.

6. How important is teamwork in mushing?

Teamwork is super important with a sled team. It is one of things I pride myself most on. I have a mixed team of Siberians, from show line dogs to racing dogs. I am proud of the fact that I have taken in dogs from a wide variety of backgrounds and taught them all to work together as a team. We typically run two teams and the biggest factor that determines who runs where is their individual personalities. I am always striving to find that perfect team lineup that brings the strong points of each dog to the forefront.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

7. How do you house and what do you feed your dogs? How do you ensure their overall safety and wellbeing?

We currently have a total of 21 Siberians, with 10 dogs in the house and 11 in a common dog yard next to our house where they have individual dog houses on platforms with shed roofs over them. I also have two kennels with roofs over them, for times when I need to separate the dogs. Around the dog yard, we have an acre fenced off with a fence that is six feet high, which serves as their play yard.

I have been feeding them a food called Inukshuck for around five years now. I have had good success with this food and find that all of my dogs enjoy eating it and keep their weight well. I also feed them a meat stew every morning during the winter months when we are sledding, and I bring a five gallon bucket of that to the trail on days that we run, so they can have a bowl for hydration and some quick calories after each run.

8. What do you do with your dogs when they retire?

My goal is for all of my dogs to spend their entire lives here with us. Since we do not race, I find that I can often allow my dogs to run up until they are 13 years old. I see how much they love running with the teams and I want to allow them to continue doing that as long as possible. Once they have a health issue that does not allow them to run anymore, then they have to stay home when we go to the trail. That is never an easy transition to make. They really do not understand why they are being left behind.

9. Are mushers born or made? Can mushing be learned and improved upon? 

In my case, made for sure. I did not get involved with dogsledding until I was almost 38 years old. I am self taught, with the help of many books, online forums, and trial and error.

10. What tips and tricks would you give to someone interested in getting started in mushing?

If I was younger and had the possibility to do it all over again, I would go to Alaska and work for a kennel there for at least one season. I feel that the knowledge one could gain from an experience like that would be hard to beat. I have yet to make it to Alaska, but it is certainly on my “to do” list. If that is not an option then finding a local musher to help you get started could be valuable as well. I advise getting into mushing slowly, so you can develop a sense of how it will fit into your life. I have seen people jump in with both feet and acquire a dozen dogs only to decide a year later that it just did not work for them. When that happens, the dogs are the ones that pay the price. Easing into it a dog or two at a time allows you to come up with a model that works well for their lifestyle and provides the best situation for the dogs.

Planning to go? Book your stay!



Booking.com

Do you have a rental that is not appearing in the map?

List it here and start earning!



join.booking.com

Contact

Peace Pups Dogsledding

Cross Drive, P.O. Box 165Lake ElmoreElmore, VT, 05657

1 (802) 888-7733

ken@peacepupsdogsledding.com

https://www.peacepupsdogsledding.com

Photo Credit: Natalie Siebers. Courtesy of Ken Haggett from Peace Pups Dogsledding


Free 2-Day Shipping on Orders over $49!

15 Best Sled Dog Breeds – Part I

Any dog, whether it is of pure or mixed breed, can be used to practice harness dog sports and to pull a ...
Read More

15 Best Sled Dog Breeds – Part III [Huskies]

The Huskies are amongst the best sled dog breeds for racing. If we think about mushing, our mind will surely ...
Read More

Cosmodoggyland Dog Sled Tours

Through The Eyes Of A Musher – Interview Series

Dog-powered sports are one of the clearest manifestations of the human-canine bond, which can be traced back thousands of years. Since ...
Read More

Greyster

15 Best Sled Dog Breeds – Part II

Mushers build their sledding team by matching dogs mainly in terms of size, speed, and ability to keep up with ...
Read More

15 Best Sled Dog Breeds – Part III [Huskies]

The Huskies are amongst the best sled dog breeds for racing. If we think about mushing, our mind will surely ...
Read More

WANT MORE ARTICLES LIKE THIS ONE?

          Adventure - Travel offers

 

Subscribe to get them straight to your inbox!

Special offers, travel tips, premium content, and much more

Invalid email address
You can unsubscribe at any time.  Give it a try and read our Privacy Policy.

Save up to 30% on Orlando Theme Parks!

Pomeranian dog with glasses reading iPad

3 Key Lessons From The 2020 Coronavirus Pandemic

If you still had doubts about whether studying online had any benefits, the particular circumstances …
Read More
Bulldog smiling with tongue out

How Expensive Is Your Dog’s Health?

Veterinary expenses can vary according to the characteristics, health condition, lifestyle and genetics of your …
Read More
Dog and lady sitting on the sand, watching the sea and wrapped in blanket, at the beach

How A Dog Can Fill Your Heart With Love, Without Emptying Your Wallet

I want to have a dog, but I don’t know if I can afford it …
Read More
Dog with ball in mouth

How To Find The Best Trainer For Your Dog

If you are looking for a dog trainer, you will probably find that you have …
Read More
Woman Hugging Siberian Husky Dog

Teaching Your Dog Good Manners

Ensuring your dog is properly trained will prevent behavior-based problems, both within a family environment …
Read More
Woman kissing Beagle dog

6 Obstacles Between You And Your Dog

If you are thinking about becoming a dog parent, but have concerns, we have good …
Read More
adopt an adult dog

5 Advantages Of Adopting An Adult Dog

If the idea of having a great companion has been running through your mind and …
Read More
shih tzu puppy on sofa

5 Factors That Can Make Your Dog Anxious

Just like humans, dogs can experience anxiety, a state of mind characterized by great restlessness, …
Read More
Cute cheerful family, dog in the foreground, happy parents with baby celebrate Christmas and New Year holiday

5 Tips To Keep Your Dog Calm When Hosting A Party

Celebratory events are meant to be a time of fun filled with music, laughter and …
Read More
Dog with backpack on

10 Tips To Protect Your Dog From A Natural Disaster

We all love animals, but in the event of a natural catastrophe, saving our pets …
Read More
Woman petting Golden Retriever dog

Animal Cruelty State Laws Reach National Level

For every animal lover, cases of animal cruelty, whether it is abuse or neglect, are …
Read More
Conan Hero Dog - Honored by President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence with First Lady Melania Trump

Conan, The Famous Military Dog Is Identified

In our article Military Dog Becomes Trending News, we presented a Belgian Malinois whose picture was …
Read More
Military Dog - Declassified photo - Special Operations

Military Dog Becomes Trending News

In our section Working Like A Dog, we praise the valuable contribution that working dogs …
Read More
Baby Little Red Riding Hood with wolf dog as grandma

Halloween – An Opportunity To Channel Your Inner Child

Let your inner child shine this Halloween. Enjoy quality time with your pet and why …
Read More
Adorable Maltese puppies in basket

Tips For Maltese Pet Parents

Glamorous, intelligent, and affectionate pets, Maltese dogs have the perfect temperament for being ideal companions …
Read More
German Shepherd Dogs Running - K-9 Unit

Forgotten 9/11 Heroes – Search & Rescue Dogs

Dutch artist Charlotte Dumas has been using her camera to reveal the insights into the human-animal …
Read More
Couple looking at map with dog, traveling in car

The Ultimate Pet Health Travel Guide

Your dog’s overall well-being is always important, but when traveling, ensuring all their medical needs …
Read More
pug con sobrepeso prevenir obesidad

How To Prevent Obesity In Pets

Preventing obesity can extend your pet’s lifespan. Obesity is the root cause of numerous health …
Read More
Portrait of happy siblings lying with dog while parents relaxing on sofa at home

What You Need To Know When Looking For Pet Insurance

Dogs are family; we give them birthday presents and a family portrait is not complete …
Read More
Toxic plants for pets

These Plants Might Be Dangerous For Your Pet

Walking or playing with our four-legged friends, enjoying the sun and the outdoors is certainly …
Read More
Dog kissing dad

They Knew The Dangers Of Getting A Dog

All these dads did not want to get a dog. They were opposed to the …
Read More

Leave a Reply ● Deje su comentario ● Laissez votre commentaire

%d bloggers like this: