Stray Dog Joins Swedish Adventure Team in 430-Mile Race Through Ecuador

December 6, 2017 | No Comments » | Topics: Animals, Life

It all started with a meatball. Arthur, a stray dog from Ecuador, caught sight of the adventure racing Team Peak Performance during their race through the Ecuadorian jungle at the Adventure Racing World Championships. After receiving a meatball, he never left them again.

Arthur followed the team through deep mud, in kayaks through rivers, and all the way across the finish line in the world championship. He ate, he slept, and he fought like a regular team member. A team that started as four, was suddenly now five.

The Adventure (AR) World Series is a gruelling 430-mile (692 km) endurance race through the Amazonian rain forest. Athletes must hike, kayak and bike their way to the finish over a span of six non stop days. The team first encountered Arthur on a muddy trek during the second last stage.

Adventure racers Staffan Bjorklund, Simon Niemi, Mikael Lindnord

According to the Team Peak Performance blog:

They tried to send him off a few times but he always showed up beside the team again as they made their way through the trekking. In the beginning it went well, but when it became muddy he was having problem and the team had to help Arthur through some of the deepest mud.
 
Arthur followed the team all the way to TA9 and waited with the team. But then he suddenly got very worried and stressed as he realized the team would get out on the water. The organization gave the advice not to bring dog Arthur out on the last leg – a dog in the kayak didn’t seem like a great idea – and the team was going to follow this advice.
 
Mike, Simon, Staffan and Karen put their kayaks down in the water and set off, but Arthur refused to be left and started swimming. This was too heartbreaking for the team, and Mikael helped Arthur up in the kayak. This led to standing ovations from everyone on the shore, seeing the five (!) team mates set off. And yes, Dog Arthur was with the team all the way across the finish line. He took a few swims along the way of the paddling, but there was no doubt about him returning to the team.

Team captain Mikael Lindnord, of Sweden, shares a

Team captain Mikael Lindnord shares a moment with Arthur

Arthur, a stray dog who joined a team

Arthur takes a nap.

Adventure racer Mikael Lindnord rests with a dog

Adventure racer Mikael Lindnord rests with Arthur

Team Peak Performance captain Mikael Lindnord, of Sweden,

Mikael Lindnord offers a bite to eat to Arthur

Mikael Lindnord, of Sweden, and Arthur take time

Mikael Lindnord and Arthur take time for cat naps

Arthur, the dog who joined an adventure racing

Arthur swims alongside his group during the kayaking portion of the 430-mile Adventure Racing World Championship. Arthur was brought out of the water and onto a kayak for his own safety, when it was clear he wouldn’t leave the team’s side, according to captain Mikael Lindnord, of Sweden.

Team Peak Performance ended the Adventure Racing World

Team Peak Performance ended the Adventure Racing World Championship race in 12th place, but crossed the line with a loyal companion, Arthur.

Adventure racer Mikael Lindnord pets Arthur after his

At the end, Lindnord, of Sweden, began taking the necessary steps to adopt him.

As a first step in the process of

In the waiting room of a veterinarian's office

In the waiting room of a veterinarian’s office in Quito, Ecuador, Arthur shakes hands with a new acquaintance. With him are Team Peak Performance members.

Arthur tolerated his medical examinations stoically. Getting checked

Arthur tolerated his medical examinations stoically. Getting checked out at by veterinarians was a first step in arranging his adoption.

A complete veterinary exam was necessary to get

A complete veterinary exam was necessary to get Arthur ready to be adopted and taken to Sweden.

With veterinary exams completed and a protective cone

With veterinary exams completed and a protective cone ensuring that he does not damage his dressings, Arthur waits while Mikael Lindnord gets equipment to transport the dog to Sweden.

Team Peak Performance captain Mikael Lindnord thanks a

Mikael Lindnord thanks a staffer at Lord Guau, a pet shop in Quito, Ecuador. The store helped arrange Arthur’s travel with the team back to Sweden.

With the logistics out of the way, Mikael

With the logistics out of the way, Mikael Lindnord shares a moment with Arthur at the airport in Quito, Ecuador, before being put in a crate for travel to his new home in Sweden.

Arthur takes a rest at the airport in

Arthur takes a rest at the airport in Quito, Ecuador before his flight to Sweden.

Just before boarding a jet in Quito, Ecuador,

With the story of Arthur's participation in the

With the story of Arthur’s participation in the Adventure Racing World Championship known outside Ecuador, the dog landed in Sweden, his new home, already a star.

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