The Fan Hitch Volume 2, Number 4, August 2000

Table of Contents

From the Editor
Raising Sled Dogs
The Good, the Bad and the ‘Eskimo’ Dog
The Russian Connection
Honoured Symbol Under Fire
Iqaluit Team Owner Speaks Out
The Homecoming
Niels Pedersen, D.V.M:
Challenging Folk Remedies
Janice Howls:
Maintaining the ISD Roots
Book Review: 
Portrait of Antarctica
First Hand Account:
Exploration of Antarctica
Dog Ownership in Modern Society
Baking: Carnivore Brownies
Behaviour Notebook:
 Silent and Induced Heat
ISDI Summit Postponed
Memorable Inuit Dog Encounters

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Index of back issues by volume number

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Ordering Ken MacRury's Thesis

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Editor's/Publisher's Statement
Editor-in-Chief: Sue Hamilton
Webmaster: Mark Hamilton
Print Edition: Imaged and distributed by the IPL students of the Ulluriaq School, Kangiqsualujjuaq, Nunavik
The Fan Hitch, Journal of the Inuit Sled Dog International, is published four times a year. It is available at no cost online at:

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The Fan Hitch
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The Inuit Sled Dog International

The Inuit Sled Dog International (ISDI) is a consortium of enthusiasts whose goal is the preservation of this ancient arctic breed in its purest form as a working dog. The ISDI's efforts are concentrated on restoring the pure Inuit Dog to its native habitat. The ISDI's coordinators welcome to your comments and questions.

ISDI Coordinator Canada:
Geneviève Montcombroux, Box 206, Inwood, MB R0C 1P0;
ISDI Coordinator USA:
Sue Hamilton, 55 Town Line Road, Harwinton, CT 06791,

Vercors nursing                             Montcombroux photo

Page from the Behaviour Notebook:
Silent Heat and Induced Heat

by Geneviève Montcombroux

Disclaimer: I am not a scientist. The following observations have been made as accurately as humanly possible in my kennel.

February: Yannamiq comes in heat. A few days before the receptive cycle, she comes into the house pen. Twelve-year-old Arnavik grumbles. The two bitches are kept apart. Three days later, Arnavik comes in heat. She had no heat the previous year.

May: Two young females are visiting and stay in an outdoor pen. They are in heat and since we don't want a mating accident they are given a contraceptive pill. Cousteau, the male and boss next door, keeps clawing at the fence. Norsuak, Cousteau's 10-month-old son, looks on but does not come too close to his father. Vercors had pups in September, and came in heat in February. Three days after taking the pill, the visiting females show no more sign of heat. One morning, Cousteau drops his vigil of them, walks over to Vercors and mounts her. They tie. Norsuak is very interested, prances around the pair and sniffs them. Although she was not scheduled to be bred until next year, I decided against abortion because of the possible complications.  There were absolutely no signs that she was coming in heat, neither visual nor behavioral on her part or from the two males in her pen.

Editor's note: In the 20 or so years we maintained intact Alaskan malamutes of both sexes, we had maybe three accidental breedings.  Within six months of our owning Inuit Dogs we had one.  Since 1996 we have heard of about a half dozen other "surprise ties", all occurring in kennels where the owners were being very careful in trying to anticipate the onset of estrus and to be ready to isolate cycling bitches.  I have come to the conclusion that the sneakiness of Inuit Sled Dogs extends into the realm of sex.  ISDI would love to receive more contributions on this issue to add to the sexual behaviour profile of this breed.

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