Vet Check held for all U.P. 200, Midnight Run dogs

MARQUETTE — The dog sled races have a number of different events for the public to enjoy. And that includes the Vet Check for every team that’s taking part in both the U.P. 200 and the Midnight Run.

Veterinarians and vet technicians spent two hours Friday morning giving health checkups at Riverside Auto. The physical exams are required for all of the dogs participating in either race.

The volunteer staff thoroughly examined the heart rate, paws, eyes and ears of every four-legged participant.

“As a vet tech in the profession, it’s just knowing that you’re helping the dogs to have the best race they can have and that implies with the mushers; they’re going to have the best race they can have,” said vet tech Heather Darbo-McClellan.

“There’s always little things. Sometimes there’s heart murmurs that come up with dogs that you being a musher you usually don’t check their heartbeat very often,” said Bruce Lengmaid. “For the most part, we try to come to the race with the dogs in 100% physical condition,” he added.

When asked about how the dogs will react to the projected warmer temperatures during the races, Lengmaid said certain breeds handle the heat better than others.

“All of the mushers pretty much know their dogs extremely well,” said Lengmaid. “It’s just a matter of reading your dogs and knowing when to let them cool down.”

After the dogs passed their checkups, they received a lot of love from the public.