Are you interested in becoming part of the ATAO team in an even more hands-on way? We’re currently looking for a few positions:

We’re in search for a handler with mushing experience to join us for the 2020/2021 season to help train our prospective Iditarod team. Handler duties will include:

  • Scooping, feeding, and watering the team
  • Facilitating freeplay
  • Walking dogs
  • Vet care
  • Preparing drop bags and camping supplies for races
  • A LOT of mushing including four wheeler and sled driving

There will be mid distance racing opportunities for the right candidate. Living quarters with a small bedroom and kitchenette included. We have water and electricity. There will be a small monthly stipend to cover groceries.

The right candidate may have the opportunity for more racing down the line, if this is something they are interested in.

We are an LGBTQ+ household – if you are not comfortable with that, this is not a good fit for you!

Qualities we’re searching for:

  • Independent & driven
  • Experience working with dogs
  • Experience mushing strongly desired
  • Must get to the point in the season (if not initially ready) to mush the team solo
  • Ability to learn / orient on new trails / in unfamiliar conditions
  • Problem solving & quick thinking
  • Realistic understanding of the down and dirtiness of scooping a lot of poop, working very long days, etc!

Handling is not an easy task. We know that it can be thankless, unforgiving, uncomfortable, and decidedly less romantic than you probably would ever imagine. You’ll be sore, exhausted, and not rich.

But it also means you get to spend 95% of your time with dogs, out in the incredible Alaskan wilderness, doing things many folks can only dream of.

If this sounds like something you can take on, please reach out to us. We are hoping to bring a handler on starting as soon as possible to get to know our dogs over the warm months and prep for an exciting season of mushing.

–Will

Do you want to join our remote / social media team as we aim for Iditarod in 2021? Please email will@ataokennel.com for more info on this position!