Historically, the dogs in the famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race have been extremely good boys, but some bad dogs appeared to break that precedent this year. Race officials have said in a statement that several animals tested positive for the opioid pain reliever Tramadol, approximately six hours after they finished the race back in March.
According to the report from The Associated Press, the implicated musher will remain anonymous, because officials cannot legally prove intent. (There is apparently some speculation that, with the dogs’ food sent to checkpoints up to two weeks in advance, some of it could have been tainted by a saboteur.) The musher will not face any discipline, though the race rules have been revised to hold mushers liable for future violations, regardless of intent.
Since testing began in 1994, this group of dogs is the first and only to test positive for any prohibited drugs.