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With 'Mouth To Snout' CPR, 'Mushing Mortician' Saves Iditarod Dog

This story broke Wednesday in the Anchorage Daily News, but it has too much going for it not to pass along.

Monday night while competing in Alaska's Iditarod dog sled race, Scott Janssen's 9-year-old husky Marshall collapsed.

"Janssen raced to the dog," the newspaper writes. "Marshall did not appear to be breathing."

"I know what death looks like, and he was gone. Nobody home," Janssen told the Daily News.

And when Janssen says he knows what death looks like, he means it. Janssen is "the mushing mortician." He runs a funeral home in Anchorage.

But he started mouth-to-snout CPR. And after what may have been five minutes, Marshall "hacked a breath." Janssen loaded him onto the sled. The 13 other dogs pulled the remaining 32 miles of that leg. Marshall was flown back to Anchorage. And as you can see in this video posted today by SB Nation, he seems to be doing very well.

According to the Iditarod's website, Janssen is now in 40th place out of 63 mushers. This is his second Iditarod. He was 42nd out of 47 finishers last year, the Daily News writes.

As Janssen says with a laugh in this video posted by the newspaper, folks have said of his lifesaving act that in his profession, "you probably don't do that very much."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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