Legendary Iditarod competitor kills moose that attacked dogs during race

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The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race took a deadly turn on Monday.

Dallas Seavey, a legendary musher in the race, told officials he was forced to kill a moose after it injured one of his dogs shortly after the start of the event. The incident occurred at around 1:43 a.m. outside Skwentna, Alaska.

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Dallas Seavey talks to officials after finishing the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on March 15, 2016 in Nome, Alaska. (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen, File)

Seavey “was forced to dispatch a moose in self defense after the moose became entangled with the dogs and the musher on the trail,” officials said in a statement. “Seavey and his team were 14 miles outside of the Skwentna checkpoint on their way to the Finger Lake checkpoint.

“Seavey continued on the trail, stopped to rest and feed his dogs and pulled into the Finger Lake checkpoint at 8:00 a.m. AKST. The Alaska State Troopers were immediately notified by Race Marshal Warren Palfrey. Seavey dropped one dog at the Finger Lake checkpoint who was injured during the moose encounter. The dog was immediately flown from Finger Lake to Anchorage and is currently being evaluated by veterinarians in Anchorage.”

FLASHBACK: ALASKA MOOSE ATTACK AGAINST IDITAROD SLED TEAM LEAVES 4 DOGS INJURED

The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Marshal Warren Palfrey said officials were “making sure that every attempt is made to utilize and salvage the moose meat.”

Seavey is tied for the most Iditarod wins ever at five. He used a handgun to shoot the moose in self-defense, according to The Associated Press.

Dallas Seavey in 2024

Five-time champion Dallas Seavey of Talkeetna, Alaska, wearing bib No. 7, takes an auction winner in his sled 11 miles over the streets of Anchorage, Alaska, during the Saturday, March 2, 2024 ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen)

“It fell on my sled, it was sprawled on the trail,” he told Iditarod Insider TV. “I gutted it the best I could, but it was ugly.”

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Seavey is not the first musher to kill a moose while in the race. The late Susan Butcher needed an ax and a park to fend off a moose in 1985. It killed two of her dogs and injured 13 others.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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