The use of dogs as draft animals has been around nearly as long as the human and dog relationship. Dogs were considered “the
poor man’s horse,” and were used as a way to teach children about horsemanship.  Dog carts have delivered meat, milk, and
produce down country roads and city streets, and during wartime they carried weapons, including machine guns and
ammunition.  Many large working breeds such as the Bernese mountain dog, Rottweiler, and Alaskan Malamute excel at carting
and draft work. While these large and powerful breeds do well at carting, carting does not exclude a dog based on size; even the
smallest dog when outfitted correctly can pull its own (properly sized) cart.
Dragging a "sacrificial
tree" helps the dogs
become accustomed
to the feel and noise
of something behind
them, as well as the
feel of the traces and
harness (without
spooking the dog or
damaging the
actual traces).
By walking on a variety
of surfaces, Alosia can
become better
accustomed to the
noises she might hear
when pulling a cart.
Walking her downtown
also helps her do her
job in a setting that is
not always predictable.
Ozzy practices
different speeds
as well as "Turn
In," and "Turn
Out," commands
on a loose lead
while attached to
his training traces.
Alosia practicing with the practice traces.
Ozzy practicing with the practice traces,
Ozzy and Kelsey practice carting commands.
Alosia walks over multiple surfaces with the practice traces.
Alosia practices pulling
objects that make
different sounds.

Before long, she will
graduate to pulling
a light cart.

Training - Week 4

Alosia Pulls the Training Cart
Training Center
Course set up to practice carting
Hike, halt, forward, back, turn in, turn out
Safety Instructions
Most important that the handler knows how to
protect the dog and release the shafts and
cart quickly if necessary.
Hooking up the shafts
Wait Alosia - Not Yet!  
She is very excited to pull the cart.
Our instructor observes
Kelsey and Alosia as they make their first turn.
They're on thier own, and Alosia is
enjoying every minute.
A very happy Malamute
all smiles
Starting Carting
We're on a roll!
Our fantastic class with their dedicated handlers from left to right:
Norma Jean (Newfoundland), Alosia (Alaskan Malamute), Kody, Onyx, and Magnum (Great Pyrenees)
Alosia graduated from her first Carting class on 2/11/12.  Here
she is receiving her ribbon from our wonderful teacher
Roseann.  We are so very sad  that Roseann passed away in
early 2013.  What a very special woman.
Alosia and Kelsey with Patti and Norma Jean.
To put Alosia's size in perspective, the
beautiful Norma Jean is a Newfie.
Alosia is ready to go!
Cold, drizzly day, but Alosia is in her
element pulling the big cart