Meet the Dogs

Here you can see photos and read more about the heart and soul of Happy Trails
-- the canine champions of the Martin Buser Iditarod teams.

MB 2016 Iditarod Team



2015 Iditarod Bound

We are featuring the dogs that may be in Martin's RACE team.  The final 16 are sometimes chosen as late as the night before the race start.  WHO do you think will make the team????


Oldest boy on the team.  Oldies but goodies can do it – just like me!!  8 year old male.  He was originally named Martin, one of the Buser boys that were pups at the dog camp in Jumeau .  Has won a couple of Kusko 300 races.  He’s rather shy and submissive, like me haha, but he excels in harness.  He could lead in a pinch but is more comfortable as a hard working team dog.  Strong, long legged, no-nonsense, fast, good eater.  One person dog – meaning he responds extremely well to me.  Went to Nome with Magnus Kaltenborn as a two year old as he was a late bloomer.


4 year old male.  Good spirited, aggressive kisser, likes hugs.  Squeaks with joy. Smooth and fluid gait.  He can run anywhere in the team.  Takes directional commands in a split second.  He looks like a porpoise in deep snow when I ask him to get off the trail to snack team or to take a rest break.  Has a chip on his shoulder with his brother Seattle, his littermate, as they continue to vie for top dog.   Leaps in your face from standing still to five feet in the air to bump noses.  Friendly spectators beware!  That’s his way of giving you a high five!  Spring loaded!  Traveled on the Iditarod Trail as a yearling with James Volek.


3-year-old male.  He’s given name was really Chief Seattle but Chief sounds too much like gee (right turn command)  so we shortened his name to Seattle.  However, he really acts like a Chief.  He’s a great lead dog but doesn’t line the team out at rest stops.  He likes to wander back into the team, which results in quite a tangle.  Still young and learning.  He is sort of spring-loaded and can easily head-butt a person when he jumps up to visit with you.  He just sees it as a sign of affection but it can be really painful in the chin.  Ideally built dog, 60 pounds, long legs, long body and great angulation – big shoulder blades, long humorous bone, sloping croup in rear and well-placed hocks.   Went on Iditarod with James Volek as a yearling.  Seattle litter theme.


5 year old female.  Almost overlooked as a girl since she’s such a big girl.  Been on the team for a few years but have found a spot on the team where she excels– left wheel.  A good wheel dog is defined by a dog that can swing under the gangline in tight turns then swing back under the line to their respective side.  In doing so the wheel dogs help turn the sled away from obstacles.  She’s tall but light on her feet.  Enthusiastic and very athletic.  Still shy to strangers.  Very loving momma dog  who never minded people petting her pups.  One of the few dogs we acquired from another kennel.  She was bred by speed musher James Wheeler.  Ran in Martin’s 2015 Kusko team.


4 year old female. Girl next door.  Sweet little leader. She’s a “hard keeper” meaning she eats enough to be athletic but not enough to be on the fat side.  We like to go into the race a little heavy.  She’s a meat eater and likes to be hand fed the tastiest treats and snacks.  Screaming to go most all the time. She and Pineapple are the two smallest dogs weighing in at 38 pounds.  Great little cheerleader that contributes to the team by working hard. Led the team for a bit on the 2014 Kusko 300 with me.  Litter theme - CARS (the movie) named by Mike Miller.  Went on Iditarod with James Volek as a yearling.


4 year old male. Super leader and lover boy.  Great kisser. Sharp on commands.  Middle school flirty boy. Loves to chew on dogs around him and they think it’s a little like getting a massage.  Then they look like they got a haircut from a five year old.   If he’d gain weight he’d be a shoe in.   Kusko 2015, 2ndplace.  Went on Iditarod with James Volek as a yearling.


5 year old male. Experienced, clench player, can run in any position.  Fast and light footed. Happy with a smirky smile. Well built.  A quiet force.  Unassuming.  Smallish male.  Like the kid whose name never gets called in class because he’s always doing what he is supposed to.  He’s the delivery man.  Gets overshadowed by his boisterous brother Payton.  In Rohns’s second place 2015 Kusko 300 team.  Went to Nome as a yearling with Matt Failor, who has his sisters Kinely and Piper.  Cousins litter.


4 year old female.  Weird footed – needs medium sized booties on her front legs and small booties on her back legs.   When she’s getting ready to go, she stomps her two front feet up and down in unison.  She ROCKS!  She eats well, sleeps well, experienced and went with me last year.  She has puppies going with Rohn to Nome.  Very sweet girl, like her mother Lindsey Vonn.  She likes to run best in the middle of the team.  Non flashy, hard worker.  Went to Nome as a yearling with James Volek.  One of the fruit litter.


4 year old male.  Crazy in a good way.  Voracious eater.  Likes to pace.  Tough loveable tank.  Friendly, happy.   First two years he ran quite wide but has learned to run more in the team.  Extremely left handed.  Cannot and will not run on the right.  Could be a main leader during the second half of the 2015 Iditarod. Kusko 2014 6th place.  Went to Nome with Martin last year and with James Volek as a yearling. One of the fruit litter.


5 year old male. One of the crazy ones.  Loves to jump up and hug visitors in the tourist season.  Grabs things out of people’s pockets in a game of “catch me if you can.”  In his full prime right now, totally trained up and ready to go.  Trouble free and happy.  Hard worker and great eater.  Solid feet and has the body and head to make a perfect working dog.  Rambunctious and just lovin life.  Seems to have a permanent smile.   Can run in lead but doesn’t excel there.  Was in Rohn’s 2nd place 2015 Kusko team and has been in most all of my previous races.  Went to Nome as a yearling with Matt Failor.  Liter theme is a friend’s cousins.


4 year old female. Excited and bossy.  Looks like a bird dog.  Presently she is sporting a choppy haircut compliments of her neighbor Doc.  Another one with piercing blue eyes.  Light footed and fast.  She’s one of the only girls vying for a spot on the main race team.  My main girls from the past, Rosie and Lindsay Vonn, just aren’t 100 %.  So Alki and Pineapple are moving up the ranks.  She’s a lover girl and likes to share my sleeping bag when we are camping.  On my Kusko 300 team.  Went to Nome with James Volek as a yearling.  One of the Seattle themed litter.  photo by Joy Berger


5 year old male.  Ultra smooth gait.  Is always under the radar since he’s so consistent.  Never falters.  Gentle veteran of many races.  Gifted athlete , superbly friendly and gets along with all the other dogs and tourists.  Little probem now because Rock and Doc’s names sound so similar.  So now Rock is Rocky and Doc is DocDoc.  Went to Nome as a yearling with Matt Failor. Brother is Roll. Yep, Rock & Roll theme, the only two in that litter. 


5 year old male.  Long haired all star.  Has been in my “A” team for three years.  Some of his kids will be running Iditarod in Rohn’s team.  Hopefully he will be passing on his leadership skills to the next genteration.  His only quirk is that he doesn’t really care for children.  So when tours come in the summer, we just turn him loose and he steers clear of any attempt at being petted.  Otherwise extremely happy go lucky.  Perfect size, about 60 pounds with really stable feet.  Enjoys eating.  Brother to Rock and they run side by side much of the time.  Went to Nome as a yearling with Matt Failor.


3 year old male.  Grew up on the Kusko 300 this year in Martin’s team.  It was the first time he ever got tired and he realizes now that after every run there is a rest.  Middle of the team dog, not ready to lead. Throw back to the freckled dogs of the early 80’s.  Piercing blue eyes.  Long slender body but stout at the same time.  Voracious eater.  A little growly with the other boys sometimes but he loves being petted.  Very unique looks.  Litter theme – Avatar: Last of the Airbenders (Aang, Zuko, Mei, Toph are siblings.) Was in Elliot Anderson’s Iditarod team as a yearling.


5 year old male.  He will be the biggest dog in the team.  The “go to” guy from last year, drug me through the 2014 storm.  He is extremely determined.. Athletic like his namesake. Gets along well with his teammates.  Quiet for the most part until he gets hooked up then he’s exuberant to get going.  Superb leader.  Had a little toenail injury but he’s not deterred in his enthusiasm.  On Rohn’s 2nd place 2015 Kusko 300  team.  Went to Nome with Matt Failor as a yearling.


4 year old female who is really coming into her own this year.  She’s a good little leader, one of the smoothest gaited dogs we have.   Fluid mover.  What she lacks in size, she makes up in drive.  Very gentle little dog.  Loves being petted and hugged. Her puppies are 8 months old now and look dissimilar to many of our current dogs, much more houndy and freckled.   On Rohn’s 2015 Kusko 300 team.  One of the fruit litter, along with Banana and Peach, also being considered for the 2015 team.  Went to Nome as a yearling with James Volek.


4 year old male.  Very smooth trotting dog.  Future leader; does lead now but needs some time to be a super leader.  Ideal size – 56 pounds. Can be boisterous when hooking the team up - a little mouthy to his neighbors.  Eats well but stays trim.  Happy, calm, quiet - a workhorse who just does his job in the team.  Has piercing eyes that seem to indicate that he’s really thinking about what he sees.  In Rohn’s 2nd place 2015 Kusko 300 team. Went to Nome with James Volek as a yearling.  One of the Seattle themed litter, along with Seattle, Ivar and Alki.  Go Hawks!


5 year old male.   One of the MAIN MEN and a quick command leader.  Dislocated a toe early on in the season so didn’t race.  He got time off,  laser treatment, and lots of attention from staff at Big Lake Animal Hospital.  He ran the Knik 200 and did very well. He is big, tall, hairy, happy, handsome and smooth.  Father to several young dogs that will be going to Nome with Rohn this year.  From the power tools litter;  brother, Drill Bit, is racing in Bethel.


5 year old male. Great leader. Old time sage and getting assertive. Sometimes thinks the bushes are planted along the trail for him to mark his territory. Kusko 2015 2nd place.

Martin's 2014 Iditarod Team


3.5 year old male SUPER leader.

Long legged, horse like hard working machine.


7 year old male leader.

The old man of the team.


5 year old female leader.

Added to the kennel last year and has integrated into the kennel amazingly well.


3.5 year old male leader.

KUSKO 300 champion leader.

Big, strong, redhaired, successful - notice any similarities


2.5 year old male

Tall, fast, UP & COMING Star!!!


3.5 year old leader.

Feraless toed freckel legged SUPER dog.


3.5 year old leader

BEST HEART ever, as stated by the ECG team.

Light footed, fluid, smooth, little male.


3.5 year old male leader.

"GO TO" dog in 2013 Iditarod.


2.5 year old femle leader.

Tinyest dog in the team, petite black smooth mover.


4 year old male leader.

Stout, strong, fast, happy & hairy.


6 year old male.


3.5 year old female leader.

Blondie look alike.


2.5 year old male

Seattle names litter

Mid sized male

Right handed.


4 year old male

Loverboy leader.  Loud, fast, happy and playful.


2.5 year old male

Big blonde beautiful eating machine.

Left handed and has to have special harness.


4.5 year old male


The 2013 Iditarod Team

Meet the newest stars of Happy Trails Kennels: The 2013 Iditarod Team!


2014 Kusko 300 Champ


2014 Kusko 300 Champ




2012 Kuko 300 Champ



2014 Kusko 300 Champ

Rosie Fletcher

2014 Kusko 300 Team

Shaun White

2014 Kusko 300 Champ

Kikkan Randall

2014 Ksuso 300 Team - Rohn

Lindsey Vonn


2014 Kusko Champ




2012 & 2014 Kusko Champ


The 2010 Iditarod Team


6 year old male 
Wolfy X Daisy
2007 Kobuk 440 champ
Poster child for sled dogs everywhere - he has the look and is as cool as Clint Eastwood, never dropped from a race in 3 years.
Low key - LEADER


3 year old male
Lance X Corporal
2008 Iditarod finisher with yearling team.
Integrating with the big boys and holding his own.
Leader in training


6 year old male
Inca X Luna
2007 Kusko 300 & Kobuk 440 champ
"BooBoo" is best known as the police chief, would clearly be in charge if humans disappeared.  Has dominating energy.
Leader & Driver


4 year old female
Logan X Ontario
2009 Yukon Quest 4th place
The kennel sweetheart with clingy hugs for everyone.  Fluid, shiny, sleek and fast.


6 year old male
Calvin X Kira
Both parents are Iditarod record holders for the fastest time to Nome.
2007 Kobuk 440 champ.
Tough, quiet, a bit reserved, no-nonsense.
On the job 24/7.


7 year old male
Calvin X Pearl
2007 Kusko 300 champ
Good ole boy, finished a dozen major races, always there when you need him.


6 year old male
Wolfy X Daisy
2007 Iditarod 4th place
Battle Axe with an amazing ability to work through aches and pains.  Mental toughness of a Samuri warrior.


6 year old male
Inca X Luna
2009 4th place Yukon Quest
Identical twin of Caribou, the two boys even have their own twin language.  Follows brother Boo's every moves.  Loves only Martin.
Leader but only with his brother, Caribou.


5 year old female
Inca X Luna
2007 Kusko 300 QUEEN and champ
Looks at food and gains weight, lovey dovey.  Lives life on her own terms no matter how many boys are on the team.
Leader with a capital "L"

Herakles - 5 year old male

Wolfy X Kira
2008 Iditarod 5th place
Named after one of the Greek heroes and like that hero, uses his wits when strength doesn't suffice.


4 year old male
Salem X Lucillia
2008 Kusko 300 4th place
One of the "L" litter (names that begin with L).  Named for the amazing Lance Armstrong, it's really not about the bike..... or the sled.

Lear Jet

4 year old male
Melchior X Pearl
Seems to get herself pregnant during racing season, oops.  Keeping her in protective custody this year.  Friendly, aerobatic tornado.


4 year old male
Salem X Lucillia
2009 Kusko 300 2nd place, 2009 4th place Yukon Quest
The "Man," powerful and commanding, thrives in single lead, loud and boisterous, at the same time cuddly and kind.
Leader to the MAX


5 year old male
Wolfy X Kira
2nd place Kusko 300, 2007 Kobuk 440 champ
The Closer, super tough and finishes whatever he starts, as constant as his namesake constellation always visible in the Alaskan winter sky.


5 year old male
Wolfy X K2
2007 Kusko 300 champ, 2007 Kobuk 440 champ
Reckless driver in the form of a canine plowtruck.  But probably one of the most photographed dogs in Alaska as he woos toursits by gently putting his paw on their shoulder and looks adoringly into their eyes.


3 year old male
Lance X Corporal
2008 Iditarod finisher in yearling team
Growing up to be a contender, leading and listening keenly.  Spin doctor of harnesses and ganglines.
Young leader

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