International Sleddog Seminar 2022 – Breeds

On this page you will find small information about the breeds we wil discuss.

Siberian Husky

The dogs we now know as Siberian Huskies are an amazing example of selective breeding over time to produce a form which perfectly fits the function for which they were developed. A breed which will:

  • Survive and function effectively at temperatures down to -50 degreesC without any artificial aids.
  • Pull a lightly laden sled tirelessly day after day over vast distances in arctic/sub-arctic conditions and enjoy it!
  • Survive and thrive on the bare minimum of food
  • Be intelligent enough to take instructions from the sled driver, but also independently minded and analytical enough to be able to ignore such instructions if they are likely to lead the team into danger.
  • Survive and function comfortably at temperatures up to 35 degrees C.
  • Be capable of hunting and catching its own food if necessary.
  • Be able to live happily with large numbers of other dogs with minimal friction.
  • Combine an infinite capacity and appetite for work with an ability to sleep anywhere and everywhere at the drop of a hat.
  • Combine the characteristics of an iron-hard working sled dog with that of the softest lap dog.

The Siberian Husky, which is directly descended from the sled dogs developed over a period of several thousands of years by the Chukchi people of North-East Siberia, fulfils all these “functions” within its beautiful and efficient “form.” The Siberian Husky is a medium-sized working dog, quick and light on his feet and free and graceful in action. His moderately compact and well furred body, erect ears and brush tail suggest his Northern heritage. His characteristic gait is
smooth and seemingly effortless. He performs his original function in harness most capably, carrying a light load at a moderate speed over great distances. His body proportions and form reflect this basic balance of power, speed and endurance. The males of the Siberian Husky breed are masculine but never coarse; the bitches are feminine but without weakness of structure. In proper condition, with muscle firm and well developed, the Siberian Husky does not carry excess weight

Canadian Eskimodog

For centuries this breed was used as a draught animal and was capable of pulling between 45 and 80 kg. per dog, covering distances from 15 to 70 miles per day. He was also used as a hunting dog, to locate seal breathing holes for the Inuit hunters. As a hunting dog he would also attack and hold at bay musk ox and polar bear for the Inuit hunters. In the summer the dog was used as a pack dog carrying up to 15 kg.

The breed has an 1100 to 2000 year history of being interdependent with the Thule culture of Inuit (Eskimo people) who, following the Dorset culture, occupied the coastal and archipelago area of what is now Arctic Canada. Although within the spitz family of dogs, the Canadian Eskimo Dog’s origin prior to this is lost in the Inuit prehistory which includes the migration of the Mongolian race from the Asian continent to North America. The existing strain of Canadian Eskimo Dog originated from stock primarily bred by the Eskimo Dog Research Foundation in the Northwest Territories. The foundation’s work over a six-year period was primarily funded by the
Governments of Canada and the Northwest Territories and involved the purchase of specimens from the remnant population of dogs kept by the Inuit of the Boothia Peninsula, Melville Peninsula and parts of Baffin Island The Canadian Eskimo Dog, as a primitive dog, is primarily a carnivorous breed, whose natural diet consisted of seal, walrus, fish, or caribou.

Greenland Dog

The Greenland Dog is one of the world’s oldest breeds and has since ancient times been the Inuits’ only sledge dog. Selection of specimens for breeding has been based mainly upon qualities like sturdy strength, hardiness and endurance, but an attractive appearance has also been kept in view.
With its robust nature the Greenland Dog is especially a dog for people enjoying open-air life. He is an excellent companion for people who likes strolling in woods or mountains with their dog pulling or carrying their gear.
A very strong polar spitz, built for endurance and strenuous work as a sledge dog under arctic conditions. Some variation in size is allowed, assuming working ability and harmony are not affected.

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