Utah-Based Company Cuts Ties With Iditarod Musher After PETA Appeal

Young Living Essential Oils Earns Vegan Chocolates as Thanks for Ending Sponsorship of Controversial Mitch Seavey

For Immediate Release:
May 23, 2018

David Perle 202-483-7382

Lehi, Utah – After PETA pointed out that a total of 350 dogs were pulled from the 2018 Iditarod—likely because of illness, exhaustion, or injury—Lehi-based Young Living Essential Oils ended its sponsorship of musher and three-time Iditarod champion Mitch Seavey, who pulled seven dogs from this year’s race. In thanks, PETA has sent the company a box of dog-shaped vegan chocolates.

“More than 150 dogs have choked to death on their own vomit or died in other horrible ways during the Iditarod, and those are just the reported deaths,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is pushing the Iditarod’s remaining sponsors to follow Young Living Essential Oils’ lead and cut all ties with the Iditarod that treats sensitive dogs like disposable machines.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—notes that the Iditarod forces dogs to run up to 100 miles a day across treacherous ice and in subzero temperatures. They sustain bloody paws, stress fractures, and other painful injuries. Mitch Seavey’s son, Dallas Seavey, is also a musher, and dogs on his team tested positive for a prohibited drug last year. Both Seaveys have written books detailing how to hit dogs, withhold food from them, cut out their dewclaws without painkillers, and more.

Guggenheim Partners, State Farm, and Wells Fargo recently cut ties with the Iditarod, and many other companies—including Costco, Maxwell House, Nestlé, Panasonic, Pizza Hut, Rite Aid, and Safeway—stopped sponsoring the race years ago. PETA is now calling on Jack Daniel’s and Chrysler to end their sponsorship of the race.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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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