Krabloonik Dog Sledding is required to rehome over 100 Alaskan Huskies. This order follows a settlement with the town of Snowmass Village, Colorado — approved in July — which designated the 2023-24 winter season as the final operation of the dog sledding business.
Krabloonik’s dog adoption efforts and wind-down plan
As reported by Aspen Times, the owner of Krabloonik Dog Sledding — Dan Phillips — stated that Krabloonik requires approximately 115 dogs for this season. He hopes that all these canines will find new homes by the end of the season on April 1, 2024. The settlement allows the business until June 1, 2024, to cease operations and vacate the property.
However, Krabloonik may potentially have more dogs on the property requiring adoption, per the wind-down plan they submitted to Snowmass authorities in August, as a part of the settlement agreement.
According to the plan obtained by the Times through a Colorado Open Records Act (CORA) request, the estimated figure doesn’t necessarily imply a limit of only 115 dogs on the property. At times, the presence of semi-retired dogs on standby is necessary. However, this figure is presently the best approximation of the dog count needed.
Phillips said that since the approval of the settlement, two dogs have found new homes. He predicts that once the season begins on Dec. 15, the process of adopting dogs will be very straightforward.
He further noted that the guests adore the pooches, adding that the working dogs will be pre-adopted. If someone expresses a desire to take one of the canines home in January, he suggested setting up the actual adoption for mid-April. This way, the new owners can pick up the dog and relocate it to their home.
Collaboration with Colorado Animal Rescue and challenges in senior dog adoption
Krabloonik has partnered with the Colorado Animal Rescue in Glenwood Springs, which will feature adoptable dogs on its website. According to an adoption update sent to Clint Kinney — the Snowmass Town Manager — on Oct. 1, the dog sledding business is facing challenges in finding homes for its senior dogs.
In the message, Phillips wrote, “I appreciate your patience through this process, and we all hoped we would have some seniors adopted by now.” Continuing, he shared, “But this will be the hardest group to move. The younger working dogs will be much easier.”
As part of the settlement agreement, Krabloonik is mandated to provide monthly adoption updates to the town. The October adoption update was also obtained by the Times through a CORA request.
How the settlement came to pass
The settlement between Krabloonik and its landlord — Snowmass Village — was finalized following the town’s efforts to evict the business due to lease agreement violations related to the treatment of its dogs.
For more than two decades, the dog sledding operation had been subject to criticism from animal activists and employees. In 2014, Phillips acquired Krabloonik from Dan MacEachen, who originally established the restaurant and dog sledding attraction in 1976.
Under the terms of the agreement, Krabloonik is required to provide sled-dog rides for a minimum of 100 days between Nov. 1 and March 31, 2024, to facilitate the adoption of the dogs.
The season is set to commence on Dec. 15, with dog training scheduled to have begun on Nov. 1, according to Phillips. “The decision that we made to settle was in the best interest of the dogs,” he stated. “It gives us time to rehouse these dogs, so they have a next chapter in their lives.”