One of the annual rites of spring in Denali National Park is the welcoming of a new litter of sled dog pups to the official kennels there. This is soon followed by the launch of the park’s PuppyCam, which not only provides a daily dose of cute, but also allows us to watch the new pups as they begin to grow.
This year’s litter consists of three puppies born to a 6-year-old female named Sultana. She was also born and raised in the Denali kennels and has proven herself to be a strong lead dog and good mother over the years. The father is a dog named Typhoon who belongs to another kennel in nearby Eagle, Alaska. He is said to be an incredible lead dog as well, and some of his traits will hopefully be passed along to his new offspring. The pups, two males and one female, are named Munter, Prusik and Clove, and while they are just a month old today, they are beginning to display their own unique personalities.
Sled dogs are vitally important to operations at Denali NP. Without them the rangers would not be able to patrol the park during the long winter months when traveling by car can be very difficult, if not impossible. In order to keep their dog teams strong and replenished, each year one of the females is allowed to have a litter and the new pups are raised from birth to work as part of the park’s sled dog team. They might not look like it now, but in a few years, Munter, Prusik and Clove may well take their place as part of the proud tradition of the Denali sled dogs.
No matter where you go in the world, some things are universal. It’s those things that help keep us grounded and comfortable no matter how far from home we may be. For me, I always cherish the smiles on kids’ faces. Kids are almost the same everywhere in the world. Boys are rambunctious and girls like to whisper and giggle. That’s why, even on the streets of El Salvador, you can find comfort in the smiles of two kids just walking by.
For more of Stephen’s excellent photography, check out his Flickr page here.
Taken any photos kids with dogs? Or maybe just some fantastic pictures of the people, places and things you’ve encountered on your travels? Why not add them to our Gadling group on Flickr? We might just pick one of yours as our Photo of the Day.
Seven out of 14 young puppies died yesterday after flying American Airlines flight #851 from Tulsa, Oklahoma to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. High temperatures and long flight delays were likely contributing factors, though further investigation is necessary to determine the exact cause of death.
American Airlines says they ship over 100,000 live animals a year. Some airlines refuse to ship dogs in the summer months due to the likelihood of heat exhaustion. American Airlines claims to adhere to temperature restrictions of 86° F when shipping live animals, which in this particular case, were overlooked. News reports put yesterday’s morning temperatures in Tulsa at 87° F and climbing, while the plane spent over an hour waiting on the tarmac.
Ten puppies were seized by customs officials at LAX.
They weren’t just too cute to come to America; the five Maltese and five Yorkshire terrier puppies were suspected to have come from a puppy mill in Korea. What’s more, their papers said they were four months old when they were, in fact, just weeks old.
This is definitely a case where the law intervened to stop cruelty – but the puppies are going up for adoption anyway. At least whomever was trying to sell them won’t see a dime.
The puppies will be available on December 20th from the East Valley Animal Care Center in Van Nuys. For more information on cruel puppy mills, click here.