Hi. This is Tank. I’m the only dog with Dave and Amy now. Last week Acorn, Tina and I skijored with Dave and Amy. We ran down the length of Knife Lake, then Vera Lake and Ensign Lake. The morning was cool, but as the sun rose, the temperature got hotter and hotter. We stayed in the shade as much as we could. Dave and Amy found spots where ice had melted near shore and we could get a drink of water.
When we got to Splash Lake, Amy and Dave stopped skiing and gave us lots of pets. I heard dogs in the distance. Then I heard someone talking. I realized that I knew the voice. It was my owner- Frank! I could tell that Tina and Acorn recognized his voice too. Acorn perked up her ears and turned her head from side to side. Tina barked. I decided to bark with her too.
Then we could see a dog team traveling across the lake. It was definitely Frank! We were all so excited. He parked his team of four dogs. Those were dogs that we knew! I was really barking now.
How do you think the dogs felt when they saw their owner?
Frank walked up to us and gave us pats on the head and scratches behind our ears. He told us what good dogs we’ve been and we licked his face. Then he brought Acorn and Tina over to his team and hooked them up in the two empty spots in wheel (the back). Acorn and Tina got really excited, ready to run with the team!
I barked and barked. Frank gave me an extra rub on the head and told me to be a good boy. He told me that I was going to stay with Dave and Amy. Then he unhooked his snow hook, took his foot off the brake and away the six dog team went. I stopped barking and looked at Dave and Amy.
Amy hooked me back up to her skijoring belt and we skijored back to camp. I didn’t have Acorn or Tina to follow. That is okay. I can follow a trail just fine. The weather was really warm and the surface of the ice was getting slushy. Puddles were everywhere and I splashed through them with my big paws. We stopped to rest often.
If you were Tank, how would you react to suddenly being the only sled dog?
A team of sled dogs that I don’t know caught up to us as we were starting the portage to Vera Lake. Those dogs were big and furry. Dave told me that this dog team was carrying a month’s worth of people food and dog food. We traveled with them the rest of the way. Amy and I stayed just in front of the dog team. For once, I ran in lead!
Back at camp, all the people unloaded the food and I got to know the other dogs. I thought maybe these new dogs would replace Acorn and Tina. They’re kind of wild if you ask me. I decided to rest in the shade of my favorite pine tree. This other dog team left by dinner time. Then I was the only dog left at camp. Tina wasn’t there, whining her high-pitched whine while waiting for dinner. Amy fed me a big dinner. Acorn wasn’t there to steal some of my food. I ate until I was full and then there was still food left in the dish. I decided to save that food for a midnight snack.
Then, something amazing happened. Dave and Amy called me into the tent. Amy moved my bed inside the tent. I sat there in disbelief for a moment. Then I curled up and went to sleep. I’ve always wanted to sleep in the tent! Being the only dog is fine by me. I think people can be part of my pack too. So, I’m not lonely just because I’m the only sled dog. I’m part of a pack that includes Amy and Dave.
Dave tells me we’re going to get the canoe soon. I don’t know what a canoe is. Dave says that I’ll ride in the canoe when the ice melts. I don’t know what that means. I guess I’ll find out.
How would you describe a canoe (or any boat) to Tank?