Lower Chittering woman to take part in Australian Sleddog National Championships

Louise Barnett puts her team through their paces.
Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au   d470925
Louise Barnett puts her team through their paces. Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au d470925

LOWER Chittering resident Louise Barnett will take part in the Australian Sleddog National Championships in Jarrahwood on July 15-16.

Ms Barnett, who is also the president of the WA Sleddog Sports Association, said it was only the second time the championships had been held in WA.

She said the sport was growing in WA, with at least three sleddog clubs and 160 members in her club alone.

She said she got involved after getting her first Alaskan malamute.

“The dogs love it. As soon as I get the harness out, they know they are going running,” she said. “It’s what these dogs were bred to do and they love it.”

Sleddog racing can have between one and eight dogs pulling their trainer along tracks. With no snow in WA, scooters and rigs are used instead of a traditional snow sled.

The Association holds four races annually, with weekly training in the Hills or Gnangara pine plantation.

Ms Barnett said sleddog racing was a sport for young and old, with participants from four to 70.

She said it was also open to all breeds of dogs, with medium and large dogs best suited.

“It’s a great way to be able to go out and have fun and spend time with your dog,” she said.

“The smiles on the faces of the dogs and owners says it all.”

To inquire about being a member of the WA Sleddog Association, visit www.wassa.com.au.

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