The Real Story of Balto, Hero Dog of Alaska

By | November 2, 2018

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The animated film, Balto, tells the true story of a heroic sled dog.

Thanks in part to the 1995 animated movie, Balto, we are now familiar with this hero sled dog of Alaska who, in 1923, saved the people of Nome, Alaska, from a deadly outbreak of diphtheria. The real story of Balto is just as exciting. Here we have a smart and determined dog, faithful and loyal to his musher, who braved harsh conditions to do the impossible. In his honor, there is now, in addition to the popular cartoon movie, a statue of the heroic dog in New York’s Central Park and an annual dog sled race that has grown to be the most popular event of its kind. Here is the real story of Balto, the hero dog of Alaska. 

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Balto was a Siberian Husky, the same breed as this beautiful dog.

Balto Was A Siberian Husky

Originally from Northeast Asia, most prominently Siberia, the Siberian husky is a medium-sized working dog that is ideally suited for cold temperatures. The dogs have a thick, double-coat that insulates them from extreme temperatures. By the start of the twentieth century, many Siberian Huskies were brought into the Alaskan territory – Alaska did not officially become a state until 1959. The Siberian huskies were excellent sled dogs because they were more athletic and lighter than the Alaskan malamutes that were traditionally used to pull sleds.