These beautiful huskies are all rescue dogs! Jim and his team lovingly rehabilitate them and give them a purpose: to be part of a team.
We were really treated last weekend to the opportunity to get to know and experience their story…and, what wasn’t to love?
Just listening to him talk, you could hear the passion for these animals pour out of Jim! It’s not the basics, like how each dog could pull about twice their weight (each animal tipping the scales at about 50 pounds means they can pull 100 pounds) or even getting the specifics of their breed like how they are the most comfortable outside when it is up to -30 degrees out. Instead, you hear about the love and patience that goes into earning the trust of a dog that someone has done a huge dis-service to: abusing them.
That job can take three to five years, to simply undo the damage that was inflicted on them and teach them to trust again.
“If I can’t teach a dog left and right I totally failed as a trainer, if I can’t get their dedication and devotion, I failed as a human”.
(sniff) – the only thing I saw more powerful than this was when the harnessed pack was being clipped into position on the line and dancing and singing with eager anticipation. Talk about pure joy…
Maybe part of it is how long I have helped with the Madison Homeless Mission … I love to see when someone has a new purpose in life, something that makes them want to get out of bed in the morning!
The love for these dogs doesn’t stop there — with the average lifespan being 12-14 years, they have a special way to remember the ones that have passed on, a wall of “fame” so to speak. Their harness is retired and placed on a wall with their picture:
Being located near Malone (8 miles east of Fond du Lac, just off Hwy. 151) they do have dog sled demonstrations and rides. Scheduled visitors can assist with the harnessing process in preparation for the ride, drive the dogs (called mushing), learn about the history of these huskies and the sport of dog sledding.
Here is what I REALLY wanted to share:
Let me start by saying that they did NOT ask me to say this: they need money.
They barely take in enough money to feed the pack, let alone cover all the medical bills that some of the more injured dogs require.
They have done amazing things like make sure they have heated floors in the winter, medication if they need it and making these wounded critters so loveable again that you are almost knocked over with doggie love when you bend down to give them a hug.
How can anyone help?
Simply send a little note to them, with a donation to:
N9103 County Rd W
Malone, WI 53049
Then, make a point to visit the Siberian Outpost when you are in the area..and tell them I sent you.