Please DO NOT attend, or bet on, greyhound racing. If you really love dogs – you simply couldn’t do either
The charitable aims of Kent Greyhound Rescue are to rescue, rehome and rehabilitate unwanted and abandoned greyhounds and lurchers. Whilst we are extremely anti racing, we are not a campaigning organisation so we would direct you towards Caged North West, Action For Greyhounds or Greytexploitations for more information on how you can help bring an end to greyhound racing.
Greyhound racing is now marketed as a fun night for all the family to try and halt its demise, but the image presented is far removed from the reality of this so called sport. For every greyhound that enters the racing world to provide a night of cheap entertainment, another will not make the grade and is likely killed. In a very simplistic form – for every race you watch – some dogs will find a home, some will be injured and put to sleep and others simply put to sleep because there are too many greyhounds and not enough homes. Would you want that on your conscience? If you love dogs, would you want a dog to die, just for your amusement and entertainment? Despite this many companies, schools and clubs still organise fundraising nights and Christmas parties at their local greyhound stadium. Should fundraising include the death of a dog? If you cannot agree, then please look at how you can help further down the page.
British tracks fuel the breeding of about 17,900 greyhounds annually (the majority bred in Ireland) of which about 9,000 will be judged suitable for racing. The best estimate for greyhounds adopted over the same time frame is 7,500, with dogs not registered for racing accounting for no more than 30%. We are seeing more and more young dogs coming through the rescue who have never raced. The figures just do not add up – what do you think happens to the dogs that are fit and healthy and could be rehomed but just disappear because there are more dogs than rescue spaces? The racing industry only rehomes dogs that have raced and retired from NRGC tracks. This does not include all of the young dogs coming through who have been deemed too slow to race, or the dogs who raced on unregistered tracks. The racing industries lack of funding (even to the RGT who are 50% funded by public donation) means a huge burden is placed on independent recuse centres such as Kent Greyhound Rescue and therefore on the public in terms of finance and voluntary resources. We are not reliant on the racing industry for funding and can therefore have the freedom to support those organisations who educate the public and raise awareness of greyhound abuse and abandonment that is perpetuated by commercial greyhound racing.
There is no doubt, that there are some good trainers. They will look after their greyhounds whilst they are still in their care and find homes for them once they have retired. But even the good trainers still dump the responsibility of looking after the dog once he has retired onto someone else. If they could not find people, who care enough, to adopt a greyhound once he had retired, then what would they do with the dogs? They have had there fun and made their money – now the ageing dog has to be financially cared for by someone else. Good trainers, still rely on the good will of the general public to make them good. Is that not still just passing the buck?
There is no legal requirement for a owner or trainer to find a home for a greyhound once he has retired. He has every right to have the dog put to sleep. However, being euthanised by a qualified vet costs money and on economic grounds many greyhounds are still dumped, passed on to laboratories, sold overseas for racing or killed in ways that should be illegal but seem not to be. Remember David Smith (The Seaham Slaughter) who killed at least 10,000 greyhounds as a “service to the racing industry” for just £10 per dog. He shot them in the head then buried them in his back garden and despite not knowing if the dogs were dead or stunned – he could not be prosecuted for killing the dogs. Why is is OK and not illegal, to murder 10,000 greyhounds just to provide a service to the racing industry?
The RSPCA states that 12,000 greyhounds disappear each year without trace. The problem with the greyhound industry is that it is self regulated and more importance is placed on the financial gains through betting rather than the welfare of the dogs. The industry has done a very poor job of regulating itself and need to be much more accountable. If you support greyhound racing then you simply support the mass murder of these beautiful and gentle dogs. There is simply no other logical and honest way to look at it.
How You Can Help
Whilst sharing horror stories on facebook may have a limited impact – you really are probably sharing amongst the converted. What will really make a difference, is if you help to campaign by writing letters or joining a protest group. Much more information is available on the AFG, Caged NorthWest and Greyexploitations websites.
- NEVER attend or bet on greyhound racing. The less support the racing industry receives = fewer races = fewer greyhounds bred = fewer greyhounds exploited and abused. It’s that simple.
- Inform family, friends and work colleagues about the plight of dogs bred for racing.
- Raise awareness via the internet and media. Writing to the letters page in response to any article concerning greyhound racing is an excellent way of raising awareness.
- Protest to any company/charity promoting/sponsoring greyhound racing. Please contact AFG for any leaflets required.
- Write to Members of Parliament expressing why you wish to see an end to greyhound racing.
- Collect signatures for any of the current AFG petitions
- Support your local campaign group in activities such as leafleting, streets stalls and demonstrations.
- If there is not a group within your area, set up your own group. AFG can help with advice and leaflets/posters.
- Join the AFG email alerts list to keep up to date with greyhound related issues.
- Foster or adopt a greyhound from your local rescue.
- Work on a voluntary basis helping the dogs at your local greyhound/dog rescue.
Each racing greyhound earns on average £180,000 gross profit for the bookmakers. You bet – they die.
The State of British Greyhound Racing - a mandate for change, is an 40 page document showing the need for change in the racing industry. If you would like a copy please contact us through the contact us page and will email the document back to you.