In December 2019, Disney+ released Togo, a feature-length film starring Willem Dafoe as Leonhard Seppala. The movie focuses on Seppala and his team of dogs, namely his lead dog Togo, as they traverse the rough tundra to deliver diphtheria serum to the frontier.
In 1925 a diphtheria outbreak threatened Nome, Alaska. Twenty mushers came together to split the grueling 700-mile distance between the serum and the city. Leonhard Seppala, already an accomplished and revered musher, was one of the heroic men who braved the -60 degree winter to bring the cure to the people of Nome. His dogs were already looked at as the best sled dogs around, but this run would solidify their place in history. His lead dog, Togo, is the true hero of the story, leading Seppala and his team through ever-changing and dangerous conditions.
While Togo was the lead dog for the longest and most taxing part of the run, Balto, a heroic dog in his own right, was awarded a majority of the glory. Balto's story would grow and continue to gain steam, even giving him his own animated movie series.
Now, Togo finally gets his own spotlight thanks to Disney+. One thing is for sure, every dogs and human who participated in the 1925 serum run were courageous and selfless.
CKC's Place in the Story
We published the Seppala series of articles as a way to bring awareness to a breed that needs help. With the love of Siberian Huskies taking prominence in the show ring and homes across the United States, a working breed like the Seppala Siberian Sleddog struggles to garner the respect it deserves. Much like Togo's run was overlooked, his breed suffers the same.
In late 2019, we reopened our books to additional Seppala Siberian Sleddog stock as a way to help preserve this strong and heroic working breed. Visit the official announcement page to learn more about what CKC is doing to preserve this magnificent breed, as well as how you can register your own Seppala Siberian sleddog with us!