Category: Dog-Powered Sports (MUSHing) & Other WooFDriver Activities

Mushing – it’s probably a word that invokes images of the frozen North, with the wind and snow howling around you, as a team of dogs forge their way through the frigid night. Well, the picture in your mind’s eye is probably accurate for some teams, but did you know that the term ‘mushing’ is actually linked to a variety of different (though related) dog sports? The word itself simply refers a type of transport that’s dog-powered, and all of these are definitely activities that require a strong bond and careful teamwork between a dog (or dog pack) and their owner. Many breeds have historically been used for intensive labor like pulling sleds or carts of goods to assist people, and if you have a canine friend with energy to burn, taking a page from a musher’s handbook can be a fantastic way to exercise and bond with your favorite four-legged friend.

Mushing can be a great learning experience for any dog lover, young or old, and with a growing number of ways to have fun and get involved in the various sports, can make for an un’fur’gettable adventure for people and pups alike!

Alaskan Iditarod – the Last Great Race

  It’s the first Saturday of a new Anchorage March; countless mushers patiently wait through the 40 degree calm to test their skill and commitment. It’s a warm day today, though knowledge of dangerous temperatures and frigid wind soon to come weighs heavily on those experienced in such matters.   This line is merely ceremonial; the actual race won’t begin… Read more →


The Lowdown on Lure Coursing

Live game coursing, the act of chasing prey for sport, is an ancient tradition. Drawings on Egyptian monuments dated from 4000 years ago depict hounds in the act of coursing. As a humane alternative to live game coursing, lure coursing was developed by Lyle Gillette in California during the 1970’s. This sport is a way to test a dog’s ability… Read more →


Hikejoring

As an expedition in exertion that’s lower impact than some other mushing sports, hikejoring is probably one of the easiest mushing activities to begin together with your pup. A hybrid of skijoring and mountaineering, the concept of the dog-human team remains the same, promoting bonding and a sense of learning respect between dog (or pack) and owner. As a relatively… Read more →


Roller Blading

Another modern day incarnation of a mushing activity, inline skating with your dog is an accessible and urban friendly workout for both you and your pup. As easy as it may sound, however, it’s not without risk, and a skate with your pup, especially within city limits, should only happen if you have full control over your speed and direction. A… Read more →


Dog Carting

Also known as dry land mushing, dog carting is a fairly self-explanatory activity, involving the pulling of a cart (which can carry supplies or sometimes a person) by a dog. Traditionally, large dogs like Newfoundlanders and Bernese Mountain Dogs were used to pull carts of firewood, market goods, mail, and even coal, since they took up less space and were… Read more →


Skijoring

Quite literally ‘driving on skis’, skijoring involves a dog or team of dogs pulling a cross-country skier – the skier helps movement of the team by pushing with poles and skis, and the dogs, attached by sled harnesses and rope to the skier, provide additional pulling power. It’s a fairly cost-effective way of exercising your dog, since only ski equipment,… Read more →