The Fan Hitch Volume 1, Number 1, July 1998

Newsletter of the Inuit Sled Dog

Table of Contents

From the Editor
Why We Got into Inuit Dogs
Know the Dog, the Land and its People
Confessions of a Malamute Breeder
Giving Credit Where it is Due
Poem: Lost and Found
IMHO: El Nino, et al.

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Index of articles by subject

Index of back issues by volume number

Search The Fan Hitch

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Ordering Ken MacRury's Thesis

Our comprehensive list of resources

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Editor's/Publisher's Statement
              Editor: Sue Hamilton
              Webmaster: Mark Hamilton
The Fan Hitch Website and Publications of the Inuit Sled Dog– the quarterly Journal (retired in 2018) and PostScript – are dedicated to the aboriginal landrace traditional Inuit Sled Dog as well as related Inuit culture and traditions. 

PostScript is published intermittently as material becomes available. Online access is free at:  PostScript welcomes your letters, stories, comments and The editorial staff reserves the right to edit submissions used for publication.

Contents of The Fan Hitch Website and its publications  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

Giving Credit Where it is Due

by Sue Hamilton

In considering the history of the breed, one immediately thinks of the Inuit people whose needs to hunt and travel were met in part by this animal.  That is a given.

What some of you might not be familiar with is the "other story",  not about birth, but resurrection.  In the early 1970's two men, who traveled throughout the arctic for the Canadian government, came to the conclusion that the pure Eskimo dog, as it was then called, was fast disappearing from the northern villages, as a result of previous government crossbreeding programs and replacement by snow machines.

Intoxicated by the sense of impending extinction of Canada's aboriginal freighting dog, the two friends decided one evening that if the breed were going to be saved, they would have to take matters into their own hands.  And so the Canadian Eskimo Dog Recovery Project was born.  With great personal and financial sacrifice, the pair dedicated the next several years to scouring the Canadian Arctic for quality dogs, developing a breeding program, and eventually obtaining Canadian Kennel Club registration.  Hundreds of dogs were returned to their roots in the arctic villages. 

The acquisition, housing, feeding, breeding, distribution, and fund raising was a monumental undertaking, a daunting task.  This story, and the two men responsible must never be forgotten.  Therefore the Inuit Sled Dog International takes this opportunity to express its gratitude to Bill Carpenter and John McGrath for restoring an awareness about this wonderful dog and for snatching it from the brink of oblivion.

Editor's Note:  The story of the Eskimo Dog Recovery Project is told in the National Film Board (NFB) of Canada video entitled "Qimmiq".  Contact information for the NFB appears elsewhere in this newsletter.

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