The REAL History of the Malamute
"The Alaskan Malamute is a generally large breed of domestic dog originally bred for use hauling heavy freight because of their strength and endurance, and later an Alaskan sled dog."
Life span: 13 to 16 years
Temperament: Playful, Affectionate, Friendly, Dignified, Devoted, Loyal
Height: Male: 24–26 inches (61–66 cm), Female: 22–24 inches (56–61 cm)
Weight: Female: 70.5–83.8 lbs (32–38 kg), Male: 79.4–94.8 lbs (36–43 kg)
Colors: Black & White, Brown & White, Gray & White, Sable & White, Seal & White, Red & White
The Malamute is not an old or long lost breed. The Malamute is a designer breed before 'designer' breeds exsisted.
Before the Gold Rush of the 1900's there were no breed of dog in Alaska. The native indians did have a few dogs, but very few. The dogs they kept had to be able to survive on very little and had to be of help to the native eskimo. Not to hinder the homelife and to be a joy to be around otherwise they would have ate the dog.
You must know that life in the Northern country was very difficult and food was very hard to come by. The eskimo's had to make a living off the sea because of this. There were hardly any land animals, therefore, no dogs.
The wolves also had a hard time finding food, thus they had to move ... roam thousands of miles with the herds. If these wolves ever encountered dogs, they would kill and eat them. This was researched by the 'Naturalists" that went up there to write about the land and its peoples.
If you really want to know the truth, research it. There are plenty of newspaper clippings in the United States archives.
Back to the Malamute: so when the gold rush was on, the miners brought up their equiptment to make their work easier. Some brought up dogs. Those that brought dogs with them quickly found that the dog itself could be sold for a great deal of money. That was then the way to make money with out minning for it. Those that used their brain, left the north, came to the states and SHIPPED DOGS INTO ALASKA to be sold.
Thousands of dogs were SHIPPED up to Alaska for sale. Their was money in it. Big money!!!
The BUSINESS of selling dogs was PROFITABLE ! now, what did the miners want ? BIG STRONG DOGS. So these folks making money off of selling dogs, brought what was high priced, they brought up big dogs. The bigger the better. Even mutts were stolen out of the yards of the people in the United States, to be shipped up North. To steal big dogs down here and ship them up there meant a larger profit than to purchase them down here and sell them up there.
So, what kind of dogs went up there? Use your brain and put yourself in the position of the business man who stole dogs from down here to sell up there.
Mutts, big mutts ! German shepherd x Mastiffs Mastiff x Saint Bernard Great Dane x Akita ? Any dogs that were big were shipped.
If it were me, i would go to the animal sheltures and get all the large mutts i could find. Oh, how about putting an add in the San Fransico news papers for a large dog? One could get free large dogs that way.
Below I am trying to post a bunch of mixed LARGE BREED dogs so that you can get some idea of what the color variations and looks of these mixed dogs would look like. If you study the mixing of breeds like I do, you would see a color pattern happening. This color pattern of any pups that come from a real german shepherd dog is the malamute pattern. This pattern is shown with a light tan marking and is placed on the muzzle, eyebrows, stockings up from the feet and a white tip on the tail.
Any time you Mix breeds together, you will get those dominate white patches even on guinee pigs, birds, livestock.
Akita Sheperd mix
Collie Shep Samoyed mix
Berneese Shepherd mix
Saint BernardShep X
Ok, so next comes this gal from the states up into the Northern Country after the influx of all these dogs and after the using of these large mutts for transporting the miners equiptment and working the mines. Large dogs are now pulling sleds big time and everyone is breeding pups up there to be sold for GOLD... Yep, 'Sealy' now enters the scene and she is IMPRESSED with all the dogs up there. So she picks a dog to her liking.. The very large furry coated mixed breed of dog.
There was no breed to say because the pups were all mixed, but when one mixes dogs up like that, the prodigy usually comes out that mixed color with markings similar to the husky of today. The ears were not all up, but were up down and side ways, but 'Sealy' and some of her friends thought they could make a profit also.
So she has some friends that are connected to the show rings and to the all mighty and powerful AKC... she talks to them and wants to introduce a new breed of dog into AKC. the AKC tells her she must write up a 'STADARD OF THE BREED' or a blue print on the dog if you will.... and she does.
This is her first time doing this but she is wise to the show curcuit and figures it all out. Several of her friends and her start breeding these dogs and entering them in the AKC shows. (look them up, they are all photographed). You will see with your own eyes the Saint Bernard in the new breed. A breeder friend who is in this with Sealy writes that "many mistakes were made and there were many dogs with the look of the Saint Bernard that went into the show ring".
Before departing for Antarctica in the 1928,
( 31 YEARS AFTER THE INFLUX OF THOUSANDS OF DOGS INTO ALASKA !)
Arthur Walden gave Seeley a dog of freighting stock (whose ancestry was unknown but had 'Malamute traits' - (according to a written Seeley account was a Greenland Eskimo Dog), "Bessie" (gray).
Seeley purchased the Malamute Yukon Jad (wolf-gray color) from Leonhard Seppala (who was strictly racing and wanted only Siberian Huskies, not slower freighting dogs).
Seeley bred Bessie to Jad and had their first litter of "modern" Alaskan Malamutes 1929. (32 years after the influx of dogs to alaska)
One of those pups, Gripp of Yukon, became the first AKC Alaskan Malamute show champion, and was also Seeley's lead dog on her Olympic sled team.
Seeley later received one of the Byrd Expedition Malamutes from Ed Goodale, whom she named Rowdy of Nome. She registered Rowdy as an Alaskan Malamute. However, Rowdy was on the BAE I roster and on the Labrador Husky (sled dogs from the Labrador region of Canada) roster, and so doesn't appear to actually be a Malamute. But Seeley created the Malamute!
|Rowdy looks like Rainier doesnt he?
||Todays Pure Bred AKC Alaskan Malamute
Paul Voelker acquired dogs for his M'Loot Kennels from many sources. He traveled to Alaska and brought dogs back; traveled coast-to-coast acquiring what they called as Malamutes that he liked. (acquired dogs from teams sold to Hollywood for use in movies; acquired dogs from the army at Camp Rimini, Montana including Dude's Wolf and Dodge's Lou found at the back of many malamute pedigrees). He accepted a wide range of breeding dogs. The M'Loot dogs worked on sled teams and served with distinction in the military. A driver on the second Serum Run, used four M'Loot dogs on his team.
Voelker was an experienced sleddog driver. His Malamutes' ranged in colors, not confined to grey & white. His M'Loots were also heavier and taller and rangier than the smaller & more compact Kotzebue Malamutes. His male Malamutes reportedly averaged 130 lbs. Gentleman Jim, a M'Loot, served in World War II and is in the Hall of Working Fame.
"My first contact with M'Loots was back in my green days in Ontario (1960s) when I used to visit with professional handler Lorna Jackson at her farm. Lorna was a real animal lover, a lifetime dog person, and had at one point been a breeder of Mals. When I knew her she had stopped breeding, but there were still two or three of her old ones on the property. And she had gotten her original stock from Paul Voelker. I remember chiefly a BIG cream-white male, about 130 or 140#, long-bodied, called Koonah, and a much smaller ancient white bitch named Kulik who had once whelped a litter of *19* pups. They were SO unlike the Mals I had seen in the show-ring, and a real piece of living history."
1950 AKC reopened stud book
The base stock of Malamutes dropped to 30 registered dogs (many lost to Military Antarctic Expeditions and WWII), and the AKC reopened the stud books. The AMCA, headed by Seeley, was resentful of this as they did not consider other Malamutes "representative of the breed". However, M'Loot and Hinman-Irwin owners were very happy. To be registered the dogs had to be shown and gain points, with multiple view photos accompanying their registration application. After 1950, the Alaskan Malamute became is mixture of Kotzebue, M'Loot and to a lesser extent Hinman-Irwin, which strengthened and improved the breed.
Seeley and others were upset over the inclusion of the M'Loots which many considered another breed, but for the AMCA to become an AKC member club, they opened membership of the AMCA to M'Loot owners.
Robert Zoller - Husky-Pak Kennels
Zoller served as a naval officer in Newfoundland during WWII and was impressed with "appearance of fierceness and power, yet gentle disposition" of Alaskan Malamutes. He went to Chinook Kennels (home of Seeley's Kotzebue Malamutes) to look at Malamutes, but found them too small. Chinook Kennels sent him to see Dick Hinman and Zoller loved the look of what he saw (Hinman-Irwin dogs). He felt they compared favorably to both Seeley's and Voelker's dogs. He and his wife bought Hinman-Irwin, and M'Loot dogs. Zoller credited the Hinman-Irwin dogs with giving some balance to the M'Loots and making a better overall dog. He still admired the Kotzebue look and did incorporate them in his breeding program. The success of his crosses influenced other M'Loot breeders, who incorporated Zoller's Husky-Pak dogs into their breeding programs. Some incorporated Kotzebue's into their breeding programs, while some M'Loot breeders stayed with their own strain, as did many Kotzebue kennels stay with their own.
Zoller's Husky-Pak Alaskan Malamutes won an impressive amount of championships over an about 12 year period with just 12 litters. A very frank look at the early AMCA days and the ridiculous political infighting and dirty tricks that went on with Seeley's camp trying to discredit any Malamutes (M'Loots and & Zoller's Husky-Pak) but her own as not purebred (especially as M'Loots and Husky-Paks began winning championship after championship) is.
"The logical next question is where did Walden and Voelker get their dogs. Some they brought from the Arctic and others they bought from people who did. A lot of the early fanciers of sled dogs knew each other, and the dogs were bought and sold among them. A number of men were part of a U.S. Army sled dog program during World War II. The Army assembled hundreds of sled dogs. Some were malamutes, and some of these were bought by their drivers at liquidation sales when the war ended. At least two of these dogs ended up with Paul Voelker and became a part of the M'Loot line. A few others also ended up as ancestors of various malamutes of today.
The important points to be made are that in the mid-1940s, all Malamutes went back only a couple of generations to "Unknown;" that most people who brought dogs out of Alaska, or bought them from people who did, really didn't have much to go on but opinion, and opinions varied widely; that most were more interested in good sled dogs than in scientifically isolating pure Malamute type and in starting a registered malamute breeding program."
Now, Sealy really liked the look of these other dogs that came out with blue eyes and she did not write in the malamute stanards that the mal would have blue eyes, but she loved the look of the blue eyes so much, she then INTRODUCED the 'Siberian Husky" dog the same way she did the Malamutes. She picked a tribes name and wrote up the standards of the breed for the new breed and introduced this husky into AKC just as she did the malamutes.
And there you have it in a nut shell ! And that is the truth. Look it up and see for yourself.
Do I care? Not one bit. What I do care about is the Lies.
|Pure Bred AKC Saint Bernard (short coat)
||Can you see the Saint Bernard in Mt. Rainier?
When you see a Malamute with the white inbetween and up over the eyes and skull, this is a result in the white of the Saint. Some Mal's even have a large white bib that will continue around the neck and even meet up in the back of the neck. That is when you know someone outcrossed back into the Saint Bernards. I believe there is nothing wrong with outcrossing as you know, but what i do not care for is the lies going on.
Robert Zoller's Story
I HAVEN'T BEEN ACTIVE IN ALASKAN MALAMUTE AFFAIRS FOR QUITE A LONG TIME. BUT I KEEP IN TOUCH WITH A FEW PEOPLE AND DICK TOBEY IS ONE OF THEM. A COUPLE OF YEARS AGO I TOLD HIM ABOUT AN ARTICLE I HAD WRITTEN FOR THE NEW ZEALAND KENNEL GAZETTE, ABOUT THE MANY PROBLEMS WE ENCOUNTERED IN GETTING OUR BREED ESTABLISHED IN THE 1940'S AND THE 1950'S - - - THE CRITICAL YEARS. DICK THOUGHT IT SHOULD BE PUBLISHED IN OUR NEWSLETTER. THE MORE WE TALKED ABOUT IT, THE MORE I AGREED WITH HIM THAT THE EVENTS OF THOSE YEARS FOLLOWING WORLD WAR 11 SHOULD BE TOLD IN SOME DETAIL, BEFORE ALL THE PEOPLE WHO WERE THERE WERE DEAD AND THE TRUE FACTS LOST FOREVER.
I HAD TRIED TO DO THIS IN MY NEW ZEALAND ARTICLE. BUT, DONE PROPERLY, IT'S A LONG STORY AND I FELT THERE WAS A LIMIT TO THE SPACE AN ALL BREED PUBLICATION HALFWAY AROUND THE WORLD WOULD DEVOTE TO A 30-YEAR-OLD HISTORY OF A SINGLE BREED HERE IN AMERICA. SO I HAD TO SKIP A LOT OF DETAILS AND JUST HIT THE HIGHLIGHTS, WITHOUT EXPLAINING WHAT REALLY HAPPENED AND WHY.
I HAD ALSO SHIED AWAY FROM NAMING NAMES. EVEN AFTER THIRTY YEARS, IT IS DIFFICULT TO CALL A SPADE A SPADE, BECAUSE IT MAY APPEAR SELF-SERVING TO DO SO. IT MAY EVEN BE CONSTRUED AS AN ATTACK ON OLD ENEMIES WHO ARE NO LONGER AROUND TO DEFEND THEMSELVES. I ASSURE YOU IT IS NOT THAT AT ALL; I JUST BECAME CONVINCED THAT, FINALLY, THE FULL STORY SHOULD BE TOLD. FOR MANY YEARS SOME OF THE BIZARRE HAPPENINGS WERE COVERED UP TO SPARE FEELING AND TO MAINTAIN AS MUCH UNITY AS POSSIBLE WITHIN OUR CLUB.
IN THE SHORT RUN, I BELIEVE THAT IS THE PROPER THING TO DO. SO I REWROTE THE STORY AND HERE IT IS: NAMES, DATES, PLACES, PEOPLE, DOGS - - ALL AS ACCURATELY AS POSSIBLE.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO SAY SOME THINGS CLEARLY, RIGHT UP FRONT. MY FIRST POINT IS THAT AFTER ALL THESE YEARS I BEAR NO ANIMOSITY TOWARD ANYONE. NOT EVEN A LITTLE BIT. IN THOSE DAYS I HAD AMPLE REASON TO BE OUTRAGED ON MANY OCCASIONS BUT I DON'T THINK I EVER WAS, REALLY. AND LEST YOU THINK WITH THAT STATEMENT I MAY BE PROPOSING MY OWN CANDIDACY FOR SAINTHOOD, I ASSURE YOU I AM NOT. I AM HUMAN. I BLEED WHEN PUNCTURED, AND I BLED FROM A LOT OF STAB WOUNDS IN THOSE EARLY YEARS. I WAS INDEED "TEED OFF" FROM TIME TO TIME, BUT I GOT OVER IT QUICKLY - - FOR SEVERAL REASONS.
FIRST, BY NATURE I AM NOT A GRUDGE-HOLDER. I AM A FIGHTER, AND I SUSPECT NOT ONE BIT LESS OPINIONATED THAN MOST OTHERS IN OUR BREED. BUT I HAVE NEVER BELIEVED THAT OTHERS MUST AGREE WITH ME TO DESERVE MY FRIENDSHIP OR RESPECT. (I'VE BEEN A DEMOCRAT SURROUNDED BY REPUBLICANS ALL OF MY LIFE!)
SECONDLY, AFTER THE INITIAL SHOCK, MUCH OF WHAT I SAW COMING OUT OF NEW HAMPSHIRE IN THOSE TIMES WAS SO AUDACIOUS THAT SOME OF IT WAS ACTUALLY AMUSING, AND PRACTICALLY ALL OF IT WAS FASCINATING TO OBSERVE AT CLOSE RANGE. YOU HAD TO SEE IT TO BELIEVE IT.
MOST IMPORTANT, I THINK, IT WASN'T ALL THAT DIFFICULT FOR ME TO BE SOMEWHAT GENEROUS IN MY JUDGMENT SINCE, EVENTUALLY, I ENDED UP WINNING ALL THE FIGHTS, AT LEAST THE REALLY IMPORTANT ONES.
IT WASN'T ALWAYS EASY, BELIEVE ME. MANY TIMES I SINCERELY FEARED FOR THE WELFARE OF OUR BREED. I WAS RELATIVELY YOUNG, NOT WELL KNOWN IN OUR BREED OR ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD OF PUREBRED DOGS, AND I WAS TAKING ON SOME PRETTY IMPORTANT PEOPLE. LIKE MANY OTHER NEWCOMERS TO THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF MALAMUTES, I WAS A BIT "SNOWED UNDER" IN MY INITIAL CONTACTS WITH THE "IN" GROUP. BUT I LEARN FAST AND WAS ABLE TO SORT THINGS OUT IN RATHER SHORT ORDER. AFTER THAT, IT WAS MOSTLY A MATTER OF HARD WORK.
THE SECOND POINT TO BE MADE UP FRONT IS THAT SOME OF THE FOLLOWING IS OPINION AND SOME IS FACT, AND I HOPE THERE IS NO MISUNDERSTANDING OR CONFUSION AS TO WHICH IS WHICH. IT SHOULD BE CLEAR TO EVERYONE THAT WHEN I SAY OUR CHEROKEE WAS THE BEST MALAMUTE EVER, THAT'S AN OPINION. WHILE THERE IS MUCH EVIDENCE TO SUPPORT SUCH A BELIEF, THERE IS OF COURSE NO WAY TO COMPARE HIM OR ANY OF THE TOP DOGS OF THIS TIME WITH ANY OF THE OUTSTANDING WINNERS WHO MAY HAVE COME ALONG TWENTY OR THIRTY YEARS LATER.
ON THE OTHER HAND, MUCH OF WHAT I WRITE IS INDEED FACT: THE SHOW RECORDS OF "THIRD STRAIN" DOGS; THE EVENTS THAT RESULTED IN CHANGES IN THE STANDARD; THE CHARGES AND COUNTER-CHARGES AND THE OUTCOME OF THE HISTORIC "SEELEY VS. ZOLLER" TRIAL AT A.K.C. MUCH IS WELL DOCUMENTED BY OFFICIAL RECORDS, SOME IS SUBJECT TO VERIFICATION BY PEOPLE STILL LIVING WHO ARE KNOWLEDGEABLE ABOUT THE HAPPENINGS DESCRIBED.
IN A FEW CASES, I PRESENT FACTS I CAN NO LONGER PROVE, PERHAPS BECAUSE THEY WERE NEVER MADE A PART OF OFFICIAL RECORDS, OR BECAUSE AFTER MANY YEARS THE LETTERS OR WHATEVER WERE LOST, OR MAYBE NEVER INTENDED TO BE KEPT. IN THESE CASES YOU CAN TAKE MY WORD FOR THEM - OR NOT. THEY ARE FACTS, NONETHELESS. (YOU CAN REST ASSURED THAT I WILL UNDERSTAND IT IF YOU FIND SOME OF THE FACTS INCREDIBLE. IF YOU WERE THERE AND I WAS NOT, AND YOU WERE TELLING THE STORY, I'M NOT SURE I WOULD BELIEVE YOU.)
HAVING SAID THAT, I WILL GET TO THE POINT AND TELL YOU MY STORY.
IT'S ABOUT THE KOTZEBUES AND THE M'LOOTS AND OUR OWN HUSKY-PAK DAYS. ABOUT WHERE OUR BREED CAME FROM AND HOW IT GOT TO WHERE IT IS.
IT'S ABOUT A FEW YEARS WHEN VARYING OPINIONS LED TO VIGOROUS DISAGREEMENTS, CHOOSING SIDES, AND BITTER BATTLES OVER WHAT THE ALASKAN MALAMUTE IS AND WHAT IT SHOULD BE; ABOUT A RARE ON-AGAIN, OFF -AGAIN POLICY AS TO THE AMERICAN KENNEL CLUB REGISTRATION, ABOUT CHANGING THE STANDARD; ABOUT WHO RUNS THE CLUB AND HOW. IT'S ABOUT THE TRIAL THAT TOTALLY DETERMINED WHAT OUR BREED WAS FROM THAT POINT ON.
ALMOST ALL REGISTERED MALAMUTES TODAY ARE IN SOME WAY RELATED TO THE EVENTS THAT OCCURRED IN A RELATIVELY SHORT PERIOD OF TIME, MORE THAN THIRTY YEARS AGO. HAD THINGS TURNED OUT DIFFERENTLY THEN, OUR BREED WOULD BE A LOT DIFFERENT NOW!
MALAMUTES ARE PRETTY MUCH A PRODUCT OF EVOLUTION, SO THEY'VE BEEN AROUND FOR A LONG, LONG TIME. EARLY EXPLORERS WROTE THAT THE DOGS OF THE MALAMUTE INDIANS OF ALASKA WERE BIGGER, STRONGER, MORE BEAUTIFUL AND MORE GENTLE WITH THEIR HUMAN COMPANIONS THAN ANY OTHER ARCTIC DOGS THEY HAD SEEN.
(Early explorer's ? Where? I have researched all i can find and i am in disagreement here. What does he mean by early? earlier than the influx of dogs into Alaska? I doubt it.)
BUT THE BREED WAS VIRTUALLY UNKNOWN FOR MANY YEARS.
(yeah, cause it didnt exsist)
UNTIL AKC RECOGNIZED MALAMUTES AS A DISTINCT BREED IN 1935, THEY WERE LUMPED WITH A LOT OF OTHERS AS "ESKIMO DOGS".
(Thats right cause there was no breed of MALAMUTE) They were sledge dogs and a division or evolution was taking place by humans.
EVEN THEN, NOT MUCH HAPPENED BEFORE AND DURING WORLD WAR II. BUT IN THE LATE 40'S AND EARLY 50'S A LOT OF PEOPLE BECAME INTERESTED, ALL ABOUT THE SAME TIME. THAT IS WHEN THE MODERN MALAMUTE REALLY BEGAN.
I SAW MY FIRST MALAMUTE IN A PRIMITIVE U.S. NAVY OFFICERS CLUB IN NEWFOUNDLAND IN 1941.
Ok, stop here... Now you now the real truth, right here... This person didnt know the Alaskan Dogs, the NATIVE dogs, nor anything else. He may have read things and did his own research as he did, but he didnt go far enough back and didnt care to pursue it any further back. He was way too busy with his desire dog. There is no fault here only FACTS.
IMPRESSED, I DECIDED TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THOSE DOGS -- SOMEDAY. WHEN "SOMEDAY" CAME IN 1947, MY WIFE LAURA AND I BEGAN OUR SEARCH. WE READ EVERYTHING WE COULD FIND. ( THERE WASN'T A GREAT DEAL TO BE FOUND. )
correct as this was the very beginning of the breed and this man was going to be part of the history of this breed.
WE FELL IN LOVE WITH THE BREED, WENT TO New York AND TALKED TO AKC, WROTE DOZENS OF LETTERS ( MAYBE HUNDREDS ), AND LOGGED THOUSANDS OF MILES DRIVING AROUND TO SEE ALMOST EVERY MALAMUTE WE COULD LOCATE.
THERE WERE SO FEW DOGS TO SEE, SO LITTLE WRITTEN ABOUT THEM, SO FEW PEOPLE WHO SEEMED TO KNOW MUCH, THAT WE WERE DOUBLY INTERESTED. WE FELT WE HAD STUMBLED UPON SOMETHING RARE, BEAUTIFUL AND VIRTUALLY UNKNOWN.
IN OUR SEARCH WE SAW A LOT OF MALAMUTES THAT WERE NOT MALAMUTES - SOME NOT EVEN CLOSE. EVERYONE WITH AN ARCTIC DOG HAD A STORY TO TELL, AND NO TWO STORIES WERE ALIKE. (IN THOSE TIMES THEY DIDN'T EVEN AGREE ON HOW TO SPELL "MALAMUTE"!) PEDIGREES, OFTEN RECORDED IN HANDWRITING, WERE DIFFICULT TO DECIPHER AND FREQUENTLY MISREAD. WE SOON LEARNED THAT MOST EARLY SLED DOG
PEOPLE WERE NOT VERY GOOD AT RECORD-KEEPING, AND USUALLY DIDN'T REALLY KNOW MUCH ABOUT OUR BREED.
There it is in a nutt shell ... From his own words...
IN ALL, IT WAS LIKE LIVING A DETECTIVE STORY - TRYING TO SORT OUT THE CLUES, SEPARATE FACTS FROM FICTION AND THE GOOD BUYS FROM THE BAD GUYS, AND SOMEHOW ARRIVE AT THE TRUTH.
IT TOOK A LOT OF WORK BUT WE FINALLY LEARNED, AND WE APPLIED WHAT WE LEARNED TO A LIMITED BREEDING PROGRAM. I STRESS THE WORD "LIMITED"; PEOPLE TODAY ARE SURPRISED TO LEARN THAT HUSKY-PAK'S NUMEROUS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS AND BREED RECORDS WERE ACHIEVED WITH A HANDFUL OF DOGS, AND WE PRODUCED ONLY TWELVE LITTERS IN 12 ½ YEARS, START TO FINISH! .
Are you listening?
OUR DOGS WON ABOUT EVERYTHING THERE WAS TO WIN. THIS MADE ME EXCEEDINGLY UNPOPULAR WITH AN AWFUL LOT OF PEOPLE. BUT IT HELPED US DEVELOP CREDIBILITY AND RESULTED IN A FOLLOWING OF GOOD PEOPLE WHO SUPPORTED US AND BECAME IMPORTANT CONTRIBUTORS ON THEIR OWN.
FROM ALMOST TOTAL CHAOS IN THE LATE 1940'S, IT TOOK US LESS THAN TEN YEARS TO ACHIEVE A STABLE, ESTABLISHED AND SECURE ALASKAN MALAMUTE BREED; AN ACTIVE, GROWING, DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL BREED CLUB; AND A NEW STANDARD THAT WORKED WELL AND WHICH EVERYONE COULD LIVE WITH FOR MANY YEARS TO COME.
AT THAT TIME, MISSION ACCOMPLISHED, WE QUIT AND WENT ON TO OTHER INTERESTS, AND LET OTHERS CARRY ON THE LEGACY WE LEFT TO THEM AND ALL WHO FOLLOWED.
IN ONE SENSE, HUSKY-PAK CAME TO THE END OF THE LINE ON JULY 16, 1968, THE DAY "EAGLE", OUR LAST MALAMUTE DIED. BUT IN REALITY WE CLOSED UP SHOP IN 1962 WHEN WE SOLD THE LAST PUPPY IN OUR "M" LITTER. (IN CASE YOU ARE COUNTING, WE DIDN'T HAVE AN "F" LITTER.) SO IT HAS BEEN YEARS SINCE WE HAVE BEEN ACTIVE IN ANY WAY. REMARKABLY, WE STILL GET LETTERS, SOME FROM OVERSEAS. THEY ARE NICE LETTERS THAT TALK ABOUT THE GREAT HUSKY-PAK DOGS OF THE 1950'S AND MANY TELL US THERE HAVE BEEN NOTHING LIKE THEM SINCE. WE ARE EXCEEDINGLY GRATEFUL TO BE REMEMBERED AFTER ALL THESE YEARS.
THE KOTZEBUE AND THE M'LOOT AND THE "THIRD STRAIN DOGS"
IN THE 1920'S AND 30'S A FEW PEOPLE HERE IN THE USA BECAME INTERESTED IN SLED DOGS AND DISCOVERED THE MALAMUTE. THEY BROUGHT FROM ALASKA A NUMBER OF DOGS BELIEVED TO BE MALAMUTES. BUT NOBODY REALLY KNEW WHAT THEY WERE. THERE WAS NO IKC (INDIAN KENNEL CLUB) OR EKC (ESKIMO KENNEL CLUB) - AND OF COURSE NONE OF THEM WERE REGISTERED, AND WITH MANY, EVEN THEIR IMMEDIATE ANCESTORS WERE UNKNOWN. IN ALL CASES, IT WAS A MATTER OF OPINION.
SINCE OPINIONS DIFFER, DIFFERENT-LOOKING DOGS WERE SELECTED, LABELED "MALAMUTES" , AND BRED.
IN NEW ENGLAND WE FOUND THE KOTZEBUES. THEIR STATESIDE BEGINNINGS WERE MOSTLY AT ARTHUR WALDEN'S KENNEL - - HE WAS THE NOTED "DOG PUNCHER" WHO HANDLED THE DOGS ON BYRD ANTARCTIC EXPEDITIONS - BUT THEY WERE TAKEN OVER AND THEIR PROGENY LATER AKC REGISTERED BY MILTON AND EVA SEELEY. SEELEY'S ALSO IMPORTED OTHER DOGS THAT RESEMBLED WHAT THEY BELIEVED THE MALAMUTE TO BE.
SCATTERED ABOUT IN OTHER PLACES WERE THE M'LOOTS, ASSEMBLED AND DEVELOPED BY PAUL VOELKER, NEAR MARQUETTE, MICHIGAN. VOELKER WAS AN ENTHUSIAST WHO SOLD A LOT OF PUPPIES BUT WASN'T INTERESTED IN SHOWING OR IN THE AKC, SO NONE OF THE M'LOOTS WERE REGISTERED.
IN NEWBURY, VERMONT, WE SAW AN OLDER DOG NAMED IRWIN'S GEMO THAT WE THOUGHT WAS THE BEST WE HAD RUN ACROSS. ONCE OWNED BY LOWELL THOMAS, THE FAMOUS EXPLORER-NEWSCASTER, GEMO ( SOMETIMES "GIMO" OR "CHIMO") HAD BEEN SHOWN TO BEST OF BREED AT WESTMINSTER IN MADISON SQUARE GARDEN IN 1941. WE BOUGHT HIS GRANDSON, A PUPPY WE NAMED "KAYAK", AND WE LEARNED THESE DOGS WERE NEITHER KOTZEBUE NOR M'LOOT: THEY WEREN'T MANY OF THEM, AND SOME HAD BEEN CROSSED WITH M'LOOT-STRAIN DOGS. DICK HINMAN, THE OWNER, HAD GOTTEN SOME OF HIS DOGS FROM DAVE IRWIN, ANOTHER EXPLORER AND AUTHOR OF "ALONE, ACROSS THE TOP OF THE WORLD". LATER I BEGAN TO CALL THESE DOGS THE HINMAN-IRWIN STRAIN OR "THE THIRD STRAIN", ALTHOUGH ACTUALLY THEY WEREN'T A STRAIN AT ALL, JUST A FEW INDIVIDUAL DOGS (PERHAPS A FAMILY) THAT WERE NEITHER KOTZEBUE NOR M'LOOT.
OUR MAIN ASSET IN THOSE DAYS, I BELIEVE, WAS A RARE DEGREE OF OBJECTIVITY. THE KOTZEBUES AND THE M'LOOTS HAD DEVELOPED FANATICAL FOLLOWINGS WHO WERE TOO BUSY MALIGNING THE OTHER SIDE TO REALLY LOOK, LISTEN AND LEARN. WE KEPT OPEN MINDS AND EVENTUALLY CAME TO THESE CONCLUSIONS:
THE KOTZEBUES WERE GOOD TYPE, MAINLY BECAUSE OF THEIR HEADS, MUZZLES, EYES, EARS, EXPRESSION AND GOOD BODY PROPORTIONS. THEY WERE MORE UNIFORM THAN THE M'LOOTS, MOSTLY WOLF GRAY, USUALLY ABOUT THE SAME SIZE AND STRUCTURE. GENERALLY GOOD REARS AND BAD FRONTS - CHESTS TOO WIDE, OUT AT THE ELBOWS. AND MOST OF THEM WERE MUCH SMALLER THAN WE BELIEVED THE ORIGINAL MALAMUTE WAS OR SHOULD BE.
THE M'LOOTS HAD BETTER SIZE BUT SOME WERE RANGY AND LACKING IN SUBSTANCE. GOOD FRONTS, MANY BAD REARS - - LACKING ANGULATION, WHICH PRODUCED SOME STILTED GAITS. TENDENCY TOWARD LONG EARS, LONG MUZZLES. SOME "SNIPEYNESS". MUCH VARIATION IN COATS AND COLORS - - LONG, SHORT; FROM LIGHT GRAY TO BLACK AND WHITE, SOME ALL-WHITES.
DISPOSITIONS DIFFERED AS WELL. THE KOTZEBUES WERE LESS AGGRESSIVE, EASIER TO CONTROL; THE M'LOOTS PRONE TO FIGHTING, OFTEN DIFFICULT TO HANDLE AROUND OTHER DOGS.
IN SHORT, THE M'LOOTS WERE BIGGER, FLASHIER AND MORE IMPRESSIVE, BUT THEY HAD SOME RATHER CHARACTERISTIC FAULTS AND I FELT THEY VARIED CONSIDERABLY IN TYPE AND IN QUALITY. KOTZEBUES WERE TOO SMALL, BUT THEY HAD UNIFORMITY GOING FOR THEM, AND THEIR MAIN ASSET WAS TYPE-AS A WHOLE THEY MORE CLOSELY RESEMBLED THE ORIGINAL MALAMUTE AS WE BELIEVE IT TO BE.
WE EASILY CONCLUDED THAT CROSSING THESE STRAINS WITH SOME SKILL, TO COMBINE THEIR GOOD POINTS AND MINIMIZE THE FAULTS, WOULD PRODUCE BETTER MALAMUTES THAN BY BREEDING WITHIN EITHER TWO STRAINS.
This is the way to begin a breed.
THAT "THIRD STRAIN", HOWEVER, COULD NOT BE IGNORED. KAYAK, UNFORTUNATELY, NEVER TURNED OUT TO BE ANOTHER GEMO. OUR SECOND MALAMUTE WAS ONE OF THE BETTER PURE M'LOOT BITCHES: SHE BECAME CH. HUSKY-PAK'S MIKYA OF SEQUIN. THEN WE REALLY GOT LUCKY. NEAR GREAT BARRINGTON, MA., WE FOUND A PAIR OF PUPS SIRED BY AN IMPRESSIVE DOG NAMED ALASKA (LATER CH. SPAWN'S ALASKA). THIS BROTHER-SISTER PAIR THAT WE BOUGHT, RAISED AND TOOK TO NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS BECAME CH. APACHE CHIEF OF HUSKY-PAK ("GERONIMO") AND CH. ARCTIC STORM OF HUSKY-PAK ("TAKOMA"). THEY WERE THE BIGGEST WINNERS OF THEIR ERA AND BECAME MILESTONES OF BREED PROGRESS.
BEST OF ALL, THEY HAD THIRD-STRAIN GENES; THEY WERE THREE-QUARTERS M'LOOT, ONE-QUARTER "OTHER" GOING BACK TO IRWIN'S GEMO AND HINMAN'S SITKA. SITKA, INCIDENTALLY, MAY HAVE BEEN AN EVEN BETTER BITCH THAN GEMO WAS A DOG. I THINK SHE DESERVES A GREAT DEAL OF CREDIT FOR THE QUALITY THAT RESULTED LATER ON.
OUR PAIR WERE AS LARGE AS THE BIGGER M'LOOTS BUT A BIT HEAVIER IN BONE AND BETTER PROPORTIONED; IN BODY THEY WERE ALMOST LIKE KING-SIZE KOTZEBUES. GOOD COATS AND COLORING AND EXCELLENT OVERALL BALANCE. HEADS WERE BROAD. EARS WERE CORRECT SIZE AND SHAPE AND SET PROPERLY ON THE SKULL. WE KNEW THIS COMBINATION WAS SUPERIOR, AND THE SHOW RESULTS SOON CONVINCED A LOT OF OTHER PEOPLE.
BUT WE WEREN'T ENTIRELY SATISFIED. WE FELT A "THIRD-STRAIN-CROSS" WOULD HEAVY UP THE MUZZLES AND SET THE TYPE. WE SEARCHED FOR A KOTZEBUE OF ADEQUATE SIZE AND CAME UP WITH TORO OF BRAS COUPE, THEN OWNED BY EARL AND NATALIE NORRIS OF ANCHORAGE, ALASKA. FORTUNATELY, TORO WAS IN THE STATES BEING SHOWN BY A PROFESSIONAL HANDLER. HE HAD JUST GONE BEST OF BREED AT WESTMINSTER. WE BROUGHT HIM TO HUSKY-PAK, MATED HIM WITH TAKOMA AND PRODUCED OUR "C" LITTER.
WE THINK THIS WAS THE GREATEST LITTER IN THE HISTORY OF OUR BREED. FIVE WERE SHOWN, ALL BECAME CHAMPIONS. ONE WAS CHEROKEE, AND WE THINK HE WAS THE BEST MALAMUTE EVER: THREE CONSECUTIVE NATIONAL SPECIALTY BEST OF BREEDS, AND THREE CONSECUTIVE AMCA DOG-OF-THE-YEAR AWARDS. THERE WAS NOT THE SLIGHTEST DOUBT IN MY MIND THAT HE COULD EASILY HAVE GONE BEST OF BREED AT THE NEXT TWO SPECIALTIES, FOR FIVE YEARS IN A ROW, HAD WE CHOSEN TO KEEP SHOWING HIM. BUT WE RETIRED HIM AS A GESTURE OF GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP.
CLIQUOT-THE DOG SHOWN IN OUR OFFICIAL AMCA EMBLEM - - WAS THE FIRST MALAMUTE TO WIN BOTH A CHAMPIONSHIP AND A CDX. HE WAS ALSO THE TOP WINNER IN NEW ENGLAND. COCHISE WAS THE BEST IN CALIFORNIA FOR A TIME, AND THE SIRE OF CH. SNOCREST'S MUKLUK, OUR BREED'S FIRST BEST-IN-SHOW. COMANCHE AND CHEYENNE, THE "C" LITTER FEMALES, WERE CONSISTENT WINNERS STARTING WITH THE BIG 1953 NATIONAL SPECIALTY WHERE, AT 14 MONTHS, THEY WERE WINNER'S BITCH AND RESERVE WINNER'S BITCH -- TO THEIR MOTHER'S BEST OF BREED !
COMANCHE DIED SHORTLY THEREAFTER. CHEYENNE PRODUCED TWO DAUGHTERS WHO WON THREE CONSECUTIVE NATIONAL SPECIALTY BOS, AND BOTH OF WHOM DEFEATED MOST OF THE TOP MALES OF OUR BREED IN THAT ERA - INCLUDING CH. MULPUS BROOK'S THE BEAR, WHO WAS OUR 1954 NATIONAL SPECIALTY BEST OF BREED AND DOG-OF-THE-YEAR.
THE SIXTH "C" LITTER PUP WAS CHIPPEWA, A SURE CHAMPION EXCEPT FOR ONE LITTLE DETAIL: HIS OWNER, WHO I COULDN'T TALK INTO SHOWING HIM!
THE SAYING IS, THE LORD GIVETH AND THE LORD TAKETH AWAY. OUR "C" LITTER WAS THE FORMULA. UNHAPPILY, ARCTIC STORM (TAKOMA) AND COMANCHE DIED FROM HARDPAD DISTEMPER FOLLOWING THE DECEMBER 1953 PHILADELPHIA K.C. SHOW. WHEN TAKOMA DIED, WE HAD ADVANCE ORDERS FOR MORE PUPS THAN SHE COULD HAVE PRODUCED IN A LIFETIME. AND COMANCHE, OWNED BY MARTHA AND BOB GORMELY, WAS AN EXTREMELY POWERFULLY-BUILT, BROAD-HEADED, HEAVILY-MUZZLED BITCH THAT I THOUGHT COULD HAVE BECOME A SUPERLATIVE PRODUCER OF THE REAL, ORIGINAL MALAMUTE TYPE. WHAT A LOSS !
WHEN WE SETTLED DOWN FROM THESE TRAGIC EVENTS, WE DECIDED ON TWO WAYS TO APPROXIMATE THE "C" LITTER. (1) MATE GERONIMO TO TAKOMA'S SURVIVING DAUGHTER, CHEYENNE. AND (2) IMPORT A TORO DAUGHTER, ALSO FOR MATING WITH GERONIMO.
CHEYENNE'S LITTER PRODUCED THREE CHAMPIONS INCLUDING CH. HUSKY-PAK MARCLAR'S SIOUX, NATIONAL SPECIALTY BOS (TO CHEROKEE) BOTH IN 1956 AND 1957, AND CH. BARB-FAR'S MARCLAR'S MACHOOK, SPECIALTY BOS IN 1958 AND OUR BREED'S FIRST FEMALE TO PLACE IN THE GROUP.
SIOUX JUST HAS TO BE THE FINEST SHOW FEMALE IN OUR BREED, UNLESS I MISSED COUNT SOMEWHERE IN RECENT YEARS. SHE COMPLETED TOTALLY IN TOP NATIONAL COMPETITION AGAINST THE BEST OF THOSE TIMES, FROM HER FIRST SHOW UNTIL HER RETIREMENT. AND NO OTHER FEMALE EVER CAME CLOSE. THE ONLY MALE SHE NEVER BEAT WAS CHEROKEE! CONSIDER THIS: SIOUX FINISHED HER CHAMPIONSHIP IN FOUR STRAIGHT SHOWS IN ONE MONTH'S TIME, DEFEATING 55 DIFFERENT MALAMUTES INCLUDING NINE CHAMPIONS! (FIFTY-FIVE WAS A MIGHT IMPRESSIVE NUMBER IN THE MID-1950'S) AND, LIKE CHEROKEE, SHE COULD HAVE WON AT LEAST TWO OR THREE MORE NATIONAL SPECIALTIES, HAD WE CHOSEN TO SHOW HER.
TORO'S DAUGHTER WAS CH. KELERAK OF KOBUK, RIGHT OFF A DOG TEAM IN ANCHORAGE, ALASKA. THE NORRIS' HAD SOLD US A GOOD ONE: WE SHOWED HER TO TWO NATIONAL SPECIALTY BOS. (AND AFTER ALL THESE YEARS, WE STILL TALK ABOUT HER WONDERFUL DISPOSITION.) HER MATING WITH GERONIMO PRODUCED THREE FINE CHAMPIONS. EROK WAS THE YOUNGEST EVER TO PLACE IN GROUP AND HE BECAME A WINNER AND OUTSTANDING SIRE IN CALIFORNIA. ECHAKO WAS RATED THE OUTSTANDING MALAMUTE OF 1960 (PHILLIPS SYSTEM), HELD THE RECORD FOR GROUP PLACINGS (AND PROBABLY STILL DOES ON A PERCENTAGE BASIS) AND WAS OUR 1960 BEST OF BREED AT WESTMINSTER. EXCEPT FOR HIS FIRST SHOW AS A PUPPY, ECHAKO WAS NEVER BEATEN BY ANY OTHER MALAMUTE!
EAGLE WAS THE BEST OF THE THREE, BUT HE CAME ALONG ABOUT THE TIME WE LOST INTEREST IN SHOWING. WE SHOWED HIM ONLY A FEW TIMES AND HE WAS NEVER GIVEN A CHANCE TO SHOW WHAT HE COULD DO. STILL, HE WAS BEST OF BREED AT WESTMINSTER IN 1958, HELD THE DOG WORLD AWARD FOR HIS OVERALL SHOW RECORD, AND IN GROUP PLACINGS HE DEFEATED SEVERAL OF THE ALL-TIME RECORD HOLDERS IN OTHER WORKING
GROUP BREEDS. AND I THINK EAGLE MAY HAVE BEEN THE BEST MOVING MALAMUTE I EVER SAW.
OUR HUSKY-PAK "E" LITTER WAS THE FIRST AND PERHAPS THE ONLY ONE IN OUR BREED TO PRODUCE THREE BROTHERS TO PLACE IN GROUP (WHICH WAS DIFFICULT FOR ANY MALAMUTES IN THOSE DAYS) AND TWO TO WIN BEST OF BREED AT WESTMINSTER.
SHOW RESULTS PLAY A MAJOR ROLE IN THE IMPROVEMENT OF ALL BREEDS BECAUSE THEY ARE SUPPOSED TO BE EXPERT, UNBIASED, THIRD-PARTY JUDGMENTS. THEY USUALLY ARE THAT (OR ABOUT AS CLOSE AS YOU CAN HOPE FOR IN THIS IMPERFECT WORLD)-EXCEPT FOR RELATIVELY UNKNOWN BREEDS AS OURS WAS IN THE 1950'S. IN WHICH CASE, EXPERTISE IS NOT ALWAYS PROVIDED. SINCE JUDGING IS A MATTER OF OPINION, MISTAKES ARE MADE, PROBABLY A LOT MORE OFTEN IN THE LESSER-KNOWN BREEDS. I SHOWED UNDER SEVERAL JUDGES WHO WERE SEEING MALAMUTES FOR THE FIRST TIME. BUT THAT'S ALL PART OF THE GAME AND THERE ISN'T MUCH YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT.
SO A FEW WINS OR LOSSES DON'T MEAN A LOT; A CONSISTENT PATTERN OF WINNING IS WHAT COUNTS. QUALITY OF THE COMPETITION, AND WHO BEATS WHOM, HOW OFTEN ARE THE MAJOR FACTORS INDICATING RELATIVE QUALITY.
BEFORE 1953, WITH A FEW EXCEPTIONS, COMPETITION AMONG MALAMUTES WAS MAINLY LOCAL OR REGIONAL. IT WAS IN EARLY 1953 AT THE NATIONAL CAPITOL AND HARRISBURG SHOWS THAT THE TOP REGIONAL WINNERS GOT TOGETHER AND NATIONAL COMPETITION IN OUR BREED BEGAN. THEN IN OCTOBER 1953 WE HELD OUR FIRST REAL NATIONAL SPECIALTY IN RYE, NEW YORK.
IN THESE BIGGEST AND MOST IMPORTANT SHOWS OF THEIR TIME, THE RESULTS WERE REVEALING. GERONIMO WON BOTH AT NATIONAL CAPITOL AND HARRISBURG. TAKOMA CAME OUT OF TWO YEARS RETIREMENT TO WIN THE SPECIALTY, DEFEATING ALL THE BEST DOGS AND BITCHES OF THAT ERA. HER BROTHER GERONIMO WAS BOS AND THREE OF HER 14-MONTH-OLD PUPS WON JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING ELSE: WD,WB,RWB,BW! (IN THE BEST OF BREED JUDGING, TAKOMA'S AND GERONIMO'S MAIN COMPETITION WAS THEIR FATHER, CH. SPAWN'S ALASKA.)
BY YEAR-END - - AFTER THE PHILADELPHIA SHOW IN DECEMBER WAS AGAIN A TOTAL FAMILY AFFAIR - THE MESSAGE WAS LOUD AND CLEAR: STRAIN CROSSES HAD PRODUCED A SUPERIOR ALASKAN MALAMUTE.
IF FURTHER EVIDENCE IS NEEDED, CONSIDER THIS: IN NATIONAL SPECIALTY SHOWS IN THE SEVEN YEARS 1953 - 1959, ALL SEVEN BEST OF BREEDS AND FIVE BEST OF OPPOSITES WERE STRAIN CROSSES INVOLVING "THIRD STRAIN" GENES. (OUR KELERAK, A KOTZEBUE, HAD THE OTHER TWO BOS.)
IN 1955 AMCA SELECTED IT'S "TOP TEN" IN OUR BREED AND EIGHT WERE THE STRAIN CROSSES. TORO AND KELERAK WERE THE TWO KOTZEBUES. NO PURE M'LOOTS. (NINE OF THE TOP TEN, INCIDENTALLY, WERE PART OF, OR RESULTS OF, OUR HUSKY-PAK BREEDING PROGRAM!)
AT THIS POINT AN INTERJECTION; YOU WILL REMEMBER THAT FORMER PRESIDENT NIXON OFTEN SAID, " NOW LET ME MAKE ONE THING PERFECTLY CLEAR." I NEED TO DO THAT NOW, BECAUSE I WELL UNDERSTAND THAT WHAT I HAVE BEEN TELLING YOU SOUNDS LIKE A EULOGY OF HUSKY-PAK. THAT - - I ASSURE YOU - - IS NOT MY PURPOSE. MY RECITATION OF THE FOREGOING STATISTICS IS ESSENTIAL TO PROVE BEYOND ANY DOUBT THAT DRAMATIC IMPROVEMENTS IN THE ALASKAN MALAMUTE BREED HAD TAKEN PLACE AT THIS POINT IN TIME. YOU MIGHT WELL CALL IT A "QUANTUM LEAP FORWARD".
I'M CONVINCED THAT STATISTICS PROVE THIS POINT-OF-VIEW BECAUSE THEY ARE OVERWHELMING. THAT'S POINT NUMBER ONE.
POINT NUMBER TWO, EQUALLY IMPORTANT, IS THAT BECAUSE OF THIS OBVIOUS BREAKTHROUGH, IMMEDIATE STEPS WERE TAKEN TO DISCREDIT ALL THE DOGS INVOLVED IN IT; TO TOTALLY DESTROY THIS NOTEWORTHY PROGRESS, AND RETURN OUR BREED TO THE RATHER SORRY STATE IT WAS IN, ONLY A FEW YEARS BEFORE.
I WILL DESCRIBE THESE EVENTS IN SOME DETAIL. BUT FIRST A FEW OBSERVATIONS ON SOME OF THE IMPORTANT DOGS OF THOSE TIMES.
EXCEPT FOR MOOSECAT M'LOOT - - OUR MIKYA'S SIRE, OWNED BY CECIL ALLEN OF FAYETTEVILLE, TENN. AND I THING NEVER SHOWN - - THE BEST PURE M'LOOT THOSE DAYS WAS CH MULPUS BROOK'S MASTER OTTER, OWNED AND EXTENSIVELY SHOWN BY JEAN LANE (FORMERLY MASSAGLIA, AND LATER BRIAR). THIS DOG WAS THE FIRST TO PLACE IN GROUPS AND HELPED PUBLICIZE OUR BREED. BUT HE WAS BEATEN BY TORO, AND CONSISTENTLY BY CH. SPAWN'S ALASKA. ALASKA WAS THE BIG WINNER - - TWICE BEST OF BREED AT WESTMINSTER - - UNTIL GERONIMO AND TAKOMA (APACHE CHIEF AND ARTIC STORM) CAME ALONG AND TOTALLY DOMINATED THE BREED. GERONIMO WAS A.M.C.A.'S FIRST "DOG-OF-THE-YEAR". HE WAS A TREMENDOUSLY POPULAR DOG, SO POWERFUL, REGAL, IMPRESSIVE, YET GENTLE AND FRIENDLY. I SUSPECT HE MAY HAVE DONE MORE THAN ANY OTHER DOG TO CALL ATTENTION TO THE MALAMUTE BREED IN THOSE DAYS WHEN WE WERE RELATIVELY UNKNOWN.
MASTER OTTER SIRED ONE OUTSTANDING WINNER, BILL AND LOIS DAWSON'S CH. MULPUS BROOK'S THE BEAR. BEAR WAS OUR NATIONAL SPECIALTY BEST OF BREED IN 1954 AND OUR FIRST EVER TO WIN THE GROUP. HE GOT HIS THIRD STRAIN GENES FROM HIS DAM, AND HE WAS A BETTER MALAMUTE THAN HIS SIRE.
THE BEST KOTZEBUE I EVER SAW WAS, OF COURSE, TORO. AND I SUSPECT HIS DAUGHTER KELERAK WAS THE BEST OF THE KOTZEBUE BITCHES; SHOW RECORDS SUPPORT THIS OPINION. I WAS MOST FORTUNATE TO DISCOVER THESE TWO AND APPRECIATE THEIR VIRTUES. AND OVER THE YEARS I HAVE DEEPLY APPRECIATED THE GENEROSITY AND GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP OF EARL AND NATALIE NORRIS WHO WERE WILLING TO SHARE THEM WITH US.
IN ALL, THE KOTZEBUE AND THE M'LOOTS WERE IMPORTANT CONTRIBUTORS TO OUR BREED, AND THE THIRD-STRAIN AND THE THREE STRAIN CROSSES WE PIONEERED IN THE 1950'S ADDED SIGNIFICANT QUALITY AND ENDED UP IMPROVING OUR BREED FOR COUNTLESS GENERATIONS TO COME.
JANET EDMONDS, AN ENGLISH LADY WHO RESEARCHED "THE ORIGINS OF THE PRESENT DAY MALAMUTE" AND PUBLISHED HER FINDINGS IN 1979, TELLS PRETTY MUCH THE SAME STORY I AM TELLING YOU NOW, ALTHOUGH IN LESS DETAIL. SHE DID MISS AN IMPORTANT POINT - - THE ROLE OF THE THIRD-STRAIN DOGS - - BUT I FORGIVE HER BECAUSE SHE WROTE:
"I FIND IT INTERESTING THAT IT WAS WHEN THE TYPES WERE SENSIBLY INTERBRED THAT THE RESULTING DOGS LOOKED MOST LIKE THE (ORIGINAL) PRE-GOLD RUSH MALAMUTES. THE CLASSIC EXAMPLES OF THIS ARE THE HUSKY-PAK DOGS OF THE 1950'S"
In the past it has been speculated that other breeds including the Tibetan Mastiff, St. Bernard or other breeds were integrated to make those "Supposed" 200 lb Malamutes. Most malamutes of today are largely M'Loot/Kotzebue crosses and as far as I know there are no all "pure" M'Loots left anywhere. The last I've been able to find in pedigrees is from the mid-1970s. Those were bred to Wakon dogs who had Kotzebue in their pedigrees.