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Mushing through the Iditarod with CBD? New possibilities in the Yukon’s trademark race


Joseph for Wikimedia Commons

High tech solutions are coming to one of the oldest competitions in the American frontier.


The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race runs almost 1,000 miles from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska. The modern version of the race started in 1973, but the tradition of supply runs and prospecting using dogs on the route goes back to the early 20th century.


Now, new methods of dog care are being implemented to maintain canine health on the difficult, cold-weather trails. According to recent reports, these include CBD oil supplements derived from industrial hemp.


CBD is used in humans for a number of uses, and people love it for their anxiety, insomnia, chronic pain and other issues.


According to the Anchorage Daily News, champion musher Lance Mackey has started giving his sled dogs CBD oil during the famed race.


Despite requests that he stop using the CBD in the race, Mackey says the products help his team recover from the long miles of work, avoid seizures and there is no technical rule in the race banning CBD use in pets. [1]


Head Iditarod Veterinarian Stuart Nelson told the Daily News he asked Mackey not to use the substance but the health effects were too desirable and cost-competitive. [1]


“I barely walk into a vet and it’s $350 before I know what’s wrong with my dog,” Mackey told the Daily News. [1]


According to the Omaha World Herald, Mackey is a cancer survivor who has four Iditarod championships under his belt. He claims other racers are jealous of his wins and his string of racing dogs when they complain about the CBD use. [2]


Mackey previously copped to using medical marijuana during his wins of the Iditarod before the substance was banned for mushers in 2010, the World Herald reports. [2]


Hemp and CBD products for pets are wildly popular, as pet owners have been shown to be rather highly represented in statistics of those who shop for CBD.


People like to give their dogs CBD for anxiety from fireworks and other stimuli, chronic pain and joint issues, along with other common problems unique to each individual pet and family.


Sources

[1] https://www.adn.com/outdoors-adventure/iditarod/2020/03/11/lance-mackey-says-he-finds-an-edge-with-cbd-supplements-for-his-iditarod-sled-dogs/

[2] https://www.omaha.com/news/national/iditarod-s-oldest-musher-quits-another-gives-dogs-cbd-oil/article_0709aad0-30eb-5eb4-9cf2-8ecbf2e89aba.html

[3] https://www.leafly.com/news/lifestyle/iditarod-musher-and-four-time-champion-promotes-cbd-for-dogs

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