Iditarod dog deaths over the last decade

2017: Four. Dogs on the teams of Seth Barnes, Katherine Keith and Roger Lee collapsed on the trail. A fourth died after overheating on an airplane Iditarod chartered to fly dogs from Galena to Anchorage.

2016: One. Jeff King's dog was struck by a drunken snowmachiner near Nulato.

2015: Two. Both dogs — Wyatt and Stiffy — collapsed on Lance Mackey's team en route to checkpoints. A definitive cause of death was never determined.

2014: Zero.

2013: One. Paige Drobny's dog, Dorado, suffocated in a snow drift in Unalakleet after being dropped.

2012: Zero.

2011: Zero.


2010: Zero.

2009: Six. A pair of dogs in Lou Packer's team died of hypothermia after becoming stranded 22 miles outside a checkpoint on the race's southern route in minus-45 temperatures.

Rick Larson's dog died between Elim and White Mountain. The cause was not immediately known.

Warren Palfrey's dog Maynard died between White Mountain and Nome. Again, the cause was not immediately known.

Jeff Holt's 6-year-old dog collapsed on the trail between Rainy Pass and Rohn. The cause was not immediately known.

A dog belonging to Alan Peck died of unknown causes after a turbulent airplane ride with an Iditarod Air Force volunteer.

2008: Three. A dog belonging to Jennifer Freking was fatally struck by a snowmachine outside of Nulato.

John Stetson's dog died after being flown back to Anchorage for aspiration pneumonia treatment.

A dog in the team of Ed Iten died between Elim and White Mountain. The cause of death was not reported.

SOURCE: Iditarod Trail Committee, press reports 

Suzanna Caldwell

Suzanna Caldwell is a former reporter for Alaska Dispatch News and Alaska Dispatch. She left the ADN in 2017.