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There's no sport in forcing dogs to pull a sled until they collapse from exhaustion or die after inhaling their own vomit. Aspiration pneumonia—a lung infection caused by inhaling vomit, among other things—is the leading cause of death for dogs who don't survive the Iditarod, and it killed a dog named Oshi in this year's race. Oshi is one of more than 150 dogs who have died since the Iditarod started, not counting those who died during the off-season while chained up or who were killed because they couldn't run fast enough.
The Iditarod's approximately 1,000-mile course requires that dogs run about 100 miles a day for around 10 days, with very little rest. They're subjected to biting winds, blinding snowstorms, and subzero temperatures. Their feet may become bruised, bloodied, cut by ice, and just plain worn out because of the vast distances that they're forced to cover. Some have frozen to death, and others have been strangled by towlines, had heart attacks, or died from internal bleeding.
A growing list of companies—including Coca-Cola, Costco, Jack Daniel's, Maxwell House, Nestlé, Pizza Hut, Rite Aid, Safeway, State Farm, and Wells Fargo—have already cut ties with this death race. Urge Ryanair, Alaskan Brewing Company, ExxonMobil, Northern Air Cargo, and Providence Alaska Medical Center to end their sponsorship of this abusive race.