Monday, January 31, 2011

Adventure Travel Company Accused Of Killing Over 100 Sled Dogs

An adventure travel company has come under scrutiny in British Columbia, Canada after a former worker filed a compensation claim for Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. The employee says that the condition came about because he was ordered to shoot more than 100 sled dogs over a two day period last year.

According to this story from CTV News, Outdoor Adventure Whistler conducted a "horrific" culling of their sled dogs last April, killing more than 100 of the them and throwing them in a mass grave. The culling took place April 21-23 and in the original claim, the worker says that he helped kill 70 dogs. The article says that the company later corrected that number to 100.

The tales that the person filing the claim has to tell are certainly not easy ones to read, and dog lovers will especially want to take caution when reading the story. A follow-up article, found here, says that Royal Canadian Mounted Police have now joined the investigation into what actually happened, and they will now dig up the mass grave to further investigate the allegations.

The story says that Outdoor Adventure Whistler did not respond to inquiries about the incident, but indications are that with the economy still sluggish and the travel industry still recovering, the dogs were killed off following a particularly slow winter season last year. One Vancouver group has already called for a complete ban of dog sled tours following this report.

Reading this story earlier was a extremely tough for me. As an animal lover, I wouldn't want to see any creature treated this way. This is a glimpse of a darker side to adventure travel, and while I believe that this is probably an isolated incident, it doesn't make it any easier to read about. If the allegations prove to be true, I hope action is taken very swiftly against the people involved.

Thanks to Eric Chan for sharing this sad story.