One of the most common questions we get on tours is- What do the dogs do if they don’t want to run…if they’re too old… if they’re too slow…if it’s time to retire? As dog lovers, we all want to make sure that our athlete’s every need is being met at every phase in their life. When they’re playful, exuberant puppies, we want to provide daily exercise, interaction, and socialization. When they’re high strung yearlings, we want to provide structured training, educational campouts, and fun, relaxed racing opportunities. When they’re muscled-up and motivated ultra-athletes in their prime, we want to provide exploration and adventure. When they’re older and calm with a higher appreciation for indoor comforts, we want to provide them with a slower pace and a couch. So for that reason, we live by the mantra- be the right home for each dog at the right time.
Some dogs follow the above timeline and have the natural ability as well as desire to become high-caliber ultra-athletes. Others may enjoy their yearling year then opt out of the intense, yet rewarding 1000-mile racing. Others may want to be a 1000-mile race dog, but they’re just not built for it. Some want a couch. Some want to run short distances. Some want to camp. Some thrive in a large group. Some prefer a more low-key atmosphere. Basically- they’re individuals. We simply try to be the right home for each dog at the right time. With that in mind, a few athletes from Ryno Kennel did join other teams or retire to a life of leisure!
Belle- Belle moved to Anchorage with our handler from the past two years, Tyler, and his girlfriend, Kelsey. She’s now living the high-life by going for walks and canicross runs in the mountains around Anchorage!
CJ- CJ joined our friend Lisa and her small team outside of Fairbanks. She now gets the best of both worlds with short runs plus lots of leisure time!
Dusky- Dusky joined our friend Joe and his team outside of Fairbanks! She’s turning into a leader, and you might notice from the photo- Drakey boy in swing behind her! Joe is focusing on mid-distance races and going on camping trips, which is perfect for both Drake and Dusky.
Mako- Mako, the powerhouse, joined Mary at Wild Root Kennel (www.wildrootkennel.com). He’s apparently become quite the excavator, so if anyone needs large holes dug in their property, Mako is the guy.
Niagra- Niagra was ready for the couch life, so she moved in with Julia. She’s now Julia’s couch potato and adventure buddy! And apparently has learned how to kayak!
Toad- Toad also joined Mary and her pack at Wild Root Kennel. With Mako and Toad, as well as the other pups Mary has added to her team, she’ll have a nice squad this winter! Check out her website (www.wildrootkennel.com). You might recognize some breedings. She has a Bailey x Zig pup (like Flash), a couple Supai x Izzy pups (siblings to Bert and Ernie), and some retired SP athletes!
Fenton- Fenton is here at Ryno Kennel, but he will be retiring to live with Tracy and Brian in Fairbanks. Tracy and Brian have a small team comprised of a few Ryno Kennel retirees- Brant, Chagga, and Teflon! Fenton still LOVES to run, but a 1000-mile race wouldn’t be the best option for his massive 65 lb frame. He’ll get to go on camping trips and adventures with Tracy and Brian’s little pack.
Cartel- Cartel is a little too smart for her own good and can be a bit of a brat for other people, so Cartel is retiring to my couch. She’s kind of a “one-person-dog,” which makes me feel special. That being said, she’ll completely ignore me if I’m asking her to do anything she doesn’t want to do.