Change needed at Krabloonik | AspenTimes.com

Change needed at Krabloonik

Dear Editor:

Aspen/Snowmass communities, please advise Krabloonik Dogsledding Kennels (Snowmass Village) that year-round, life-long, quality-of-life for dogs is more impressive than having large quantities of dogs!

For 30 plus years, Krabloonik has “stored” their athletic dogs during off-season, tethered with 6-foot chains to their houses. Other dog-sledding businesses have higher standards. Current and former mushers, expressing concern about lack of exercise and socialization for Krabloonik’s 240 plus sled dogs (Aspen Daily News, March 26), offered help by way of equipment and volunteering, as have organizations and outraged citizens and tourists. So far, Krabloonik has declined or ignored these offers, along with offers from other dog-sledding operations to take unwanted dogs (because of Krabloonik’s questionable retirement practices).

Research from PACFA (Department Of Agriculture Unit Monitoring Dogsledding Operations In CO), HSUS, Voices For The Krabloonik Dogs, other Colorado Dogsledding Businesses, and Private Citizens with connections to Krabloonik produced many facts.

During off-season some Colorado dogsled businesses have their dogs pull tourists in carts on wheels and scooters, unhooked after every mile to cool off rolling in ponds, then misted off after rides. Others provide everyday play yards or run free like pets.

Krabloonik’s “Request for Waiver of the Prohibition of Tethering – Facility Plan” (new off-season dog exercise regulation) filed with PACFA (March 28) states, “In the off-season, the dogs will be offered approximately one hour or more per week of supervised, off-tether activity in an enclosed area.” This is contrary to Krabloonik’s marketing on their Facebook page stating, “and even in summer (the dogs) get their needed exercise, pulling carts on wheels, but only in the early and late hours of the day, when the heat is down.” (“Kiwi Collection,” by Jim Tobler.)

Retired dogs at other Colorado dogsled businesses get adopted by individuals, are well-socialized, with instructions on how to help sled dogs become pets, or kept at the facility as pets. Some have graves with photos honoring the dogs after they have lived out their lives.

Prior to 2005, Krabloonik shot unwanted dogs and threw them in a pit. After that, the Aspen Animal Shelter has been rehabilitating and adopting them out, but hasn’t taken any additional since 2009. Krabloonik is now unwilling to reveal private adoption records except for one musher who adopted one dog, and their adoption form is unavailable on their website.

Krabloonik, please walk your talk!

Ricki Newman

Aspen


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