The Fan Hitch Volume 12, Number 2, March 2010

Journal of the Inuit Sled Dog
In This Issue....

From the Editor

Recollections: Life on the Land

Sled Dogs of Russia

An Examination of Traditional Knowledge:
The Case of the Inuit Sled Dog, Part 2

In the News

For the Love of a Retired Sled Dog

The Chinook Project to Visit Labrador

Behavior Notebook: Some Aspects of Dog Behavior

Behavior Notebook: More on Boss Dogs

About Previous Articles in The Fan Hitch

IMHO: Timelessness

Navigating This Site

Index of articles by subject

Index of back issues by volume number

Search The Fan Hitch

Articles to download and print

Ordering Ken MacRury's Thesis

Our comprehensive list of resources

Talk to The Fan Hitch

The Fan Hitch home page

ISDI home page

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:

Print subscriptions: in Canada $20.00, in USA $23.00, elsewhere $32.00 per year, postage included. All prices are in Canadian dollars. Make checks payable in Canadian dollars only to "Mark Brazeau", and send to Mark Brazeau, Box 151 Kangiqsualujjuaq QC J0M 1N0 Canada. (Back issues are also available. Contact Sue Hamilton.)

The Fan Hitch
welcomes your letters, stories, comments and suggestions. The editorial staff reserves the right to edit submissions used for publication.

Contents of The Fan Hitch are protected by international copyright laws. No photo, drawing or text may be reproduced in any form without written consent. Webmasters please note: written consent is necessary before linking this site to yours! Please forward requests to Sue Hamilton, 55 Town Line Rd., Harwinton, Connecticut  06791, USA or

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,
From the Editor....

Once again we've "tweaked" the side bar that appears on every electronic page of The Fan Hitch. Beginning with this March issue, instead of having to return to our journal's home page to navigate to other locations on our website, you can easily access all the other pages from any article. Those links can be found under the heading "Navigating This Site".

Be sure to check out the latest addition to our Resources page (under "Selected Travel and Tourism Sites"), Nunavik - A Land and Its People. It is a beautifully constructed website showcasing Nunavik in comprehensive cultural, historical, geographical detail of words and images.

Another site worthy of exploration is Portraits of the Far North, a collection of Gerald Kuehl's magnificent black and white pencil drawn portraits of Inuit Elders. In addition to this feast for the eyes, each study is accompanied by the subject's biography that offers an intimate peek into traditional ways of life, which could not have been possible without the participation of the Inuit Dog.

The National Film Board of Canada website has a searchable section that holds short archival video clips. To begin exploring, enter "Inuit Dogs" or "husky dogs" in the search box. Video clips are accompanied by details such as when the footage was shot. Here are a couple of examples to enjoy: Shot ID: 41871 and Shot ID: 34462.

This was not one of our better seasons for mushing. Despite the cold, near "drought" conditions meant too little snow for the sled yet too much for the cart. February finally brought lots of snow, immediately followed by heavy rain "chasers". Strong sunshine and above freezing temperatures quickly eroded our trails. So we didn't get out with the dogs too much. No matter. Our crew remained happy for any opportunities to stretch their legs, either the few times in harness or even just tearing around the back yard and the exercise pen where we had more snow than our trails. This was especially true for Romulus and Monkey, our June, 2009 retirees. They didn't even mind the drenching mid-winter rain. I don't think these dogs have had one down day since they arrived here from Iqaluit, Nunavut. Please don't misinterpret this. Images of Romulus and Monkey from up North showed well cared for, hard working, bright-eyed dogs, as were all our other "retirees". It's just that these dogs are so happy to be doing anything we have for them to do. And in this issue of The Fan Hitch, contributor Kim Han's experience with her retiree mirrors ours. Mark and I share her enthusiasm for providing homes for retired arctic Inuit Dogs. We advocate and encourage others to enjoy this rewarding experience as Kim states, "…if they have the tools, facilities, and knowledge suitable for managing a dog of this kind." Please contact me if you are serious and want to learn more.

Wishing you smooth ice and narrow leads,

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