Iditarod 2019 Race Update 3

Meet first time racer Alison Lifka! After her family vacation to Alaska when she was 7, Alison fell in love with the terrain and wildlife that only Alaska can provide (who wouldn’t?!). Even as a young girl, her passions revolved around animals-- sled dogs in particular. Alison, 27, was born in Ohio and raised in North Carolina. She grew up in the Blue Ridge Mountains where she spent her childhood exploring the outdoors and dreaming of adventures and exploration..After graduating from Sweet Briar College with a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental science, she went straight to Alaska and starting learning the mushing industry. She had become interested in Iditarod when she was younger and her father followed the Race, and that interest became solidified once she started working as a handler for mushers. While working as a kayak guide in Prince William Sound, she met a friend of the Iditarod, veteran Lev Shvarts. Since then she has spent her winters handling for Iditarod mushers and summers giving sled dog rides on the Juneau Icefield. During the summers, Alison worked for Linwood Fiedler on the Juneau icefields as apart of the Alaska Heli-Mush Crew. This is how I ended up meeting the all inspiring Alison.

This year marks the first year of Alison’s Iditarod career. This has been a dream in the making for her. To meet her team of furry friends, check out her racing webpage at If you look closely maybe you will even recognize which pups these are! I can say from personal experience, that all of the dogs on her team are wonderful dogs and great athletes! Her own dog, Bear, might even come out of retirement and be on the official race team!

Join myself and the rest of the staff here at Long Trail Veterinary Center in congratulation Alison and her team in their first Iditarod!!!