Move Comes as Craft Sportswear, ExxonMobil End Support of Deadly Race
For Immediate Release:
January 28, 2021
David Perle 202-483-7382
Anchorage, Alaska – The Iditarod has just lost two more sponsors: Medical Park Family Care has confirmed that it is not sponsoring the 2021 race, and Massachusetts-based outdoor apparel company Craft Sportswear pulled the plug on its only days-old sponsorship after hearing from PETA. In letters over the past three years, the group had pushed Medical Park Family Care to pull its support, and more than 50,000 PETA members and supporters had also written to the clinic urging it to do so.
The news comes just a week after ExxonMobil ended its longstanding $250,000-per-year Iditarod sponsorship after a vigorous PETA campaign. To date, Alaska Airlines, Chrysler, Coca-Cola, Jack Daniel’s, Wells Fargo, and many other brands have cut ties with the race, in which more than 150 dogs have died, most commonly after inhaling their own vomit.
“Now that the public knows that the Iditarod forces dogs to run until their bodies break down, they inhale their own vomit, and some of them die on the trail, the race can’t seem to hold onto its sponsors,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is now calling on holdouts like Millennium Hotels and Resorts to stop supporting cruelty to dogs.”
Dogs used in the Iditarod are forced to pull heavy sleds for nearly 1,000 miles through blinding blizzards and subzero temperatures. More than 220 dogs were pulled off the trail during the 2020 race because of exhaustion, illness, injury, or other causes. The race’s official death toll doesn’t include countless others who were killed simply because they weren’t fast enough or who died during the off-season while chained up, a practice exposed in a PETA undercover investigation.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview that fosters violence toward other animals. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.