There is quite a 'to do' list that we still need to do check off before we are fully prepared for harness and hook up next Friday:
- Check the ATV 4 wheelers - we have used them very little in the last 9 months in comparison to the many, many miles we will put on them in the next few months. So, oil change, tire check and all around vehicle inspections are needed.
- Check training mainlines - we need to look through all the tug lines and snaps. Our training lines get lots of wear and tear from mud, ice and grime.
- Check harnesses - we use Howling Dog Harnesses and a "no neck line" system. The dogs are not limited by a second leash attached to their collar so they can run forward or backward and they can face any direction they choose. This system obviously requires a lot of training and patience. Good etiquette and manners doesn't happen overnight. The first month of Fall training is more about team union and expectations that mileage. HERE is an older post about harnesses.
- Size harnesses - we have small, medium, large and xtra large harnesses. Body shape and weight both play into what size an individual will wear.
- Make dog team rosters - the first few training runs we pair mature dogs with some of our more energetic youth. If we can help it, we like to put dogs into teams that all live in the same area of the yard. That way, after the run, we can let them all loose to run back to their houses and the 'put away' is much easier.
- Determine a start time - we will have some new help at SP Kennel this season so we want to start the dogs as well as the mushers off on the right feet (paws.) The best time for a husky to train is when it is coolest... thus very early! We will see how excited the crew is to start harnessing at "Oh Dark Thirty"!
NOTE: On Sept 2 we will have a brand new list starting with all the stuff we forgot on Sept 1!