The Makings of a Team by copperhead

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From left to right, Bailey was our first sled dog . Mieko was our second and Socket was our third. In the time we have had Mieko Bailey has gone to where Mieko started and Socket is still in the middle. Bailey and Mieko trade lead now and and again but it is obvious that the torch is being passed. Don’t know if Socket will ever lead…he’s not built for that like the other two are.

When we made Bailey a sled dog it was just for fun. When we got Mieko it was because Bailey simply can’t handle it all anymore. At 10 years old he is nearing retiring age. He’s taught Mieko a lot.

Mieko is teaching Socket, but not how to lead, how to follow and work as a team with the other two. Bailey doesn’t really think Socket is worth the fur he’s made of. They are always in intense competition, or in an argument of some kind. Socket doesn’t back down..and thinks Bailey will eventually. Mieko is the new enforcer though..and with his size neither of the two others bother with getting uppity with him except in play.

Some say it’s impossible for a Golden Retriever to lead. Mieko was the least likely leader of the three..and it took over a year of training and time to get him “thinking” with an ear toward us.

Socket is a Whiphusky and will probably always just want to run and pull. It’s what they were created for. But, a team is not just made of leaders and wheels..someone has to haul the middle line. He does an admirable job of it and usually with a quickness that keeps or gentle leader on his toes.


akita, collage, dog sled, dog team, dogs, golden, harnesses, husky, ridgeback, sled dog


  • Helen Akerstrom Photography
    Helen Akerstro...almost 4 years ago

    Love your story of the Furkid family and the trials of sledding! Great collage!

  • Thank you Helen! I think it would probably be sort of boring if it were easy :)

    – copperhead

  • Gina Ruttle  (Whalegeek)
    Gina Ruttle (...almost 4 years ago

    I got such a kick out of reading about your dog team and their personalities. How wonderful that you all are pulling together. Our dog, a shelter pup (part German shepherd/part husky/part unknown) always contends he has a destiny to make it to the burled arch in Nome…:-)) Alas, he needs a team to help him and in northern Illinois that’s not likely to happen. Take care. Great to make your acquaintance on RedBubble! All the best, Gina

  • Why any dog can be a sled dog..Bailey started out as a lone sled dog..or you can teach him to ski-jor instead :) Thanks for looking and nice to meet you too :)

    – copperhead

  • Dawn M. Becker
    Dawn M. Beckeralmost 4 years ago

    Happy Thanksgiving From
    Doggie & Kitty Paradise

  • Ginny York
    Ginny Yorkalmost 4 years ago

    Very nice! You know a friend of mine in Vermont has Huskys and does mushing with them. I sold her son and his wife a female APBT and she hooked her up and told me she loved it. LOL She ended up being a lead dog in the pack a few times. She sent me pictures of it. It was so cool! :))

  • Thanks Ginny! I am convinced pretty much any dog can be a sled dog given the right incentive. All of ours are pretty unique in that. Socket is the only one actually meant to be a sled dog really. Mieko was the hardest sell, but he thinks its a whole lot of fun now! Bailey really doesn’t think anything but sledding is fun LOL.

    – copperhead

  • Heidi Mooney-Hill
    Heidi Mooney-Hillover 3 years ago

    HI I’m just looing thru your galerie, I have no Idea how I could have overlooked your artwork. Will be looking in more often.
    Great photos and lovely comments
    greetings Heidi

  • Hello Heidi, Nice to see you! Thanks for all your kind comments! I try to vary what I post on here, but the fact is you will see lots of these dogs, and the other ones that I care for on a daily basis mostly…as it’s what I have time for! Sorry it took so long to reply. Finally got some pics to post again!

    – copperhead

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