The Fan Hitch Volume 8, Number 3, June 2006

Journal of the Inuit Sled Dog

In This Issue...

Editorial: Diversity with a Common Interest
FIDO: John Senter
Developing a Culture of Mushers
The Inuit Sled Dog Registry
Arctic Inuit Sled Dogs: Life in Retirement
Inuit Dog Thesis Update
In the News
Fan Mail
Kennel Tip: Taking the Heat Off
Book Review: The Lost Men
 IMHO: Filling the Woodshed

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: Sue Hamilton
Webmaster: Mark Hamilton
The Fan Hitch, Journal of the Inuit Sled Dog, is published four times a year. It is available at no cost online at:

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

This site is dedicated to the Inuit Dog as well as related Inuit culture and traditions. It is also home to The Fan Hitch, Journal of the Inuit Sled Dog.
Fan Mail....

Seven-month-old Pakaq (L) and his five-year-old 
boss, Qiniliq, blast through the kennel's main
doorway into a fenced yard.  Photo: Hamilton

April 29, 2006 12:18:30 PM 

Hello and Thank you for taking a moment to read my email… I just found your site and have been reading until my eyes are blurry! I am thrilled to find you!  My question is…. There seems to be quite the controversy in the U.S. as well as in Europe over the ancient breed Karelian Bear Dog/Russo European Laika. I would like to know if you have any information on how to go about doing DNA work to prove once and for all that these are indeed the same breed or that they aren't. I read the DNA article that was posted and was thrilled that someone has already been down this road. Please advise at your earliest convenience.

Thanks so much and keep up doing the good work of preserving the sled dog and the way of life!!!
D. N.
Kasilof, Alaska

* * *

Apr 28, 2006, at 10:21 AM

I am working for a television production company in London.  We are currently making a two-hour programme about the origin and evolution of the domestic dog. The Canadian Inuit Dog is one of the breeds we would love to cover in the programmes and I am trying to ascertain where we should go to film this and how to build up a sequence around the Qimmiq.

I have been recommended reading a thesis by Ken MacRury about the Qimmiq. I am interested in more information about the breed and how it will fit into our story.  Do you have this article or others that may be of interest to me? Indeed you may have ideas for other people to speak to about the Qimmiq. We are particularly keen to film in 'timeless' Inuit territory, where we can see the dogs working in as traditional circumstances as is possible. Any pointers you might be able to give me would be very much appreciated.

With thanks and best wishes,
London, England

* * *

June 2, 2006 11:23:29 AM EDT

I am doing a series of articles on arctic breeds. I have seen some strong opinions about Northern Inuits in your newsletter Fan Hitch. I was wondering if I could have your views on some other non-recognised breeds such as the Utonagan and Tamaskan Dog?

Thank you for your help.

United Kingdom


The Inuit Sled Dog International's strong negative opinion is based on the use of the word "Inuit" in the so-called Northern Inuit "breed", what many believe to be a wolf/dog hybrid. This has already caused much confusion with the Inuit Sled Dog breed by the uninformed public. The bad reputation of the well-documented behavior problems known to exist in wolf hybrids may be incorrectly ascribed to Inuit Sled Dogs based on the misuse of name "Northern INUIT".  While the ISDI disapproves of the crossing of dogs to wolves in general, and Inuit Sled Dogs to wolves in particular, we do not have any other specific views regarding the "non-recognized breeds" you have mentioned.

Since you have asked for ISDI's opinion, it would be a courtesy to advise us for what publication you are writing your articles and when they will be published.

Simply because some northern spitz breeds were mixed with other canids to create the Northern Inuit, I am puzzled that you appear to consider it an arctic breed, which it certainly is not.

I am further puzzled that, in writing a series of articles on arctic breeds, you have come to the ISDI asking for our opinion on wolf hybrids, yet you do not seem interested in asking for information regarding Inuit Sled Dogs. If it is your intention to just glean text or images from the ISDI and The Fan Hitch web sites, please remember that all material you find there is subject to international copyright laws and you must obtain permission to reproduce any parts. Non-specific references to material on our web pages should be appropriately attributed to the Inuit Sled Dog International and The Fan Hitch.

Sue Hamilton

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