Ban Drugs for Iditarod Racing Dogs

Target: Lisa Murkowski, Alaskan Senator

Goal: Outlaw use of performance-enhancing drugs on sled dogs.

Several dogs in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race recently tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug that the sled team refused to identify. This led the race officials to change the rules to forbid the use of such substances, though it was too late to disqualify this particular team. The list of forbidden drugs includes anabolic steroids, cough suppressants, muscle relaxants, tranquilizers, and opiates.

Substances such as steroids and opiates can be very dangerous, and mushers who give them to their dogs are putting the safety and health of those dogs at great risk for the sake of victory. This goes beyond cheating and comes dangerously close to animal cruelty given the risks to these animals. Steroids, for example, can lead to diabetes, pancreatitis, and weakened immunity in dogs after prolonged use.

These potentially life-threatening side effects are not worth winning a race. There are far more humane ways to train and raise strong racing dogs without resorting to potentially poisoning their bodies. Sign this petition to demand a full ban on the use of performance-enhancing drugs for dogs.


Dear Senator Murkowski,

A team of mushers was reportedly discovered to have used performance-enhancing drugs on their sled dogs. The rules of the race have changed to forbid the use of such substances, but that is only one step. Substances such as steroids, muscle relaxants, and opiates can be extremely dangerous; the mushers not only allegedly cheated, but put the health and well-being of their dogs at risk. Such drugs can cause weakened immunity, diabetes, and hair loss.

Racing dogs are living creatures, much more than just a tool for victory in a race, and deserve to be treated with the best care. You must outlaw the use of potentially dangerous drugs on these animals, as there are far more humane methods of training a strong team of racing dogs that will not put their health at risk. Ensure that performance-enhancing drugs are fully illegal from here on out, and protect dogs from the potentially life-threatening side effects.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Frank Kovalchek

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  1. I agree with the others; ban the entire race altogether!

  2. You know what? Fuck the banning of drugs for that fucking horrible so called race…BAN THE FUCKING RACE!! The way the “sled drivers” treat these hard working animals is unfuckingreal! They are so thoughtless and cold blooded. While these animals ought to be praised and treated with respect for the work they perform for their drivers, they are instead treated as if they are disposable and expendable and when these poor dogs can not keep up anymore because they are pressed so hard these heartless sled driving assholes either just abandon the animal where he/she falls or they will murder them. Evil, cruel, dispicable and disgusting. Ban that fucking race.

  3. Karen Mckay says:

    Why is this imbecilic and barbaric race still allowed to continue?? Disgusting!!!!

  4. This is animal abuse!

  5. this race should be banned these poor dogs run their hearts out for what so some sick human can win a race and he’s not even running this is one of the cruelest things yet. all racing dog racing horse racing all of it should be banned but there’s too much stinking money involved so of course the animals have to pay the price

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