According to longtime musher Zoya DeNure, this type of selective killing is standard throughout the industry when dogs are too sick, too injured or too old to run.
“The dogs have no legal protection here,” DeNure told The Dodo last March. “People can go out into the woods and shoot their dog for whatever reason. Sometimes that might be injury, sometimes it’s because they’re too old to race. They’ll make remarks like, ‘This guy isn’t running so well, we’re gonna get rid of him,’ as if he’s a piece of furniture or a machine. And these people are lauded in the public eye.”