Athletes around the world have been taking illegal substances to give them an added edge for decades. It doesn’t matter if it is football, baseball, cycling, or track and field, everyone wants to be top dog. And now, even the Iditarod has had a dog doping scandal.
Apparently, some of those beautiful huskies that run in Alaska’s 1,000-mile race tested positive for the banned substance, Tramadol, an opioid painkiller. The four pooches belong to Dallas Seavey, the second place winner in the March 2017 race. Of course, he denies the allegation and even went so far as to accuse someone of tampering with the dog food.
Since race officials were unable to prove the dog doping was intentional, Seavey was able to keep his title and the $59,000 he and the dogs won. Very interesting.
Of course, animal rights groups seized on the opportunity to cry foul. The group claims how many other Iditarod owners use dog doping to get their dogs to push through the pain and finish the grueling race. They have also complained about numerous dog deaths, competitor attacks, dogs being run to death, and dogs suffering terrible infections from bloody paws.
As for Seavey and his pups, he claims he has never used drugs on his dogs and has four, first-place wins under his belt. This year he placed second behind his dad, Mitch Seavey. The younger Seavey indicated that security was slack this year and he truly believes someone tampered with his dogs’ food. He has withdrawn from the 2018 race in protest.
Spectators wonder if you haven’t done anything wrong, why would you withdraw from next year’s race.
President of the Iditarod Official Finishers Club, Wade Marrs, does not believe Seavey used dog doping on his dogs because he has too much integrity.
We will all have to wait until next year’s race to see if there will be any more scandals.