It’s a scenario they don’t cover in the police academy: four dogs pulling an unmanned sled down a divided boulevard as wet snow flies, blowing through red lights and unresponsive to officers’ attempts to get them to stop.
The incident is captured on dash cam footage from a police cruiser in Billings, Montana. It shows the sled dogs, sans musher, sprinting across an overpass and leading police on a several-blocks-long low-speed chase involving at least two police cruisers. The dogs ignore several attempts by the police to stop them, by simply veering around their cars.
Jen Mignard, the dogs’ owner and musher, said she was out getting some early-season practice in preparation for an upcoming race when she fell off the sled and the dogs kept going.
“You know, the dogs work together amazingly as a team,” Mignard told KTVQ-TV in Billings. “I thought, ‘Well, this is no good,’ although I was sure they just would go back to my pickup.”
Mignard took to a Facebook group for lost and found pets in Billings to post about the dogs immediately after losing them.
“It was a snowy walk back to my pickup trying to follow the sled tracks,” she wrote later. “When I saw that it continued beyond the pickup I knew they went on quite the excursion.”
The video shows the dogs veering between one cruiser and a guardrail on the overpass and past another in front of a Burger King, only their tails visible in the cruiser’s headlights as they race past. They were eventually stopped near a residential side street.
“I have no clue at this point in time,” one of the officers is heard saying to dispatchers as the dogs can be heard gathering around him. “I just have four dogs and a sled and no rider. I presume they either ran away from their ride or they’re going to end up looking for a rider later on.”
Mignard reportedly picked up the dogs from the local animal shelter the next day.