Iditarod Cruelty to Draw Dog Defender to GCI Owner’s Annual Meeting

For Immediate Release:
June 5, 2023

David Perle 202-483-7382

Anchorage, Alaska – Tomorrow, at the annual meeting for Liberty Broadband—which owns local internet service provider GCI—a PETA staffer will hold executives’ feet to the fire over the company’s refusal to pull its shameful $250,000 annual sponsorship of the deadly Iditarod.

PETA will point out that this year’s race—which had the lowest number of mushers ever—ended in controversy after the winner was caught on video dragging exhausted dogs to a checkpoint. More than 150 dogs have died in the Iditarod so far, and the official death toll doesn’t include the countless others who were killed for not being fast or fit enough or who died during the off-season while chained next to dilapidated shelters or plastic barrels in the bitter cold, a practice exposed by PETA in an undercover investigation.

“As long as its top brass refuses to act, GCI will remain synonymous with cruelty for propping up the Iditarod, in which exhausted dogs are forced to run until their paws bleed and their bodies give out,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on GCI to cut ties with this despicably cruel dog race right now.”

PETA also attended the annual meeting of Formula 1, part of the Liberty family of companies, and held “plead-ins” at Liberty CEO Greg Maffei’s appearances at events in Beverly Hills, California; Miami; and New York, issuing heartfelt appeals for him to end his company’s support of the Iditarod. More than a dozen companies have dropped their Iditarod sponsorships after hearing from PETA.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information about PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind