Greyhounds Forced to Race Despite UK Heatwave
Temperatures have been soaring throughout the UK, but greyhounds are still forced to race, putting them at risk of heatstroke or exhaustion. This just adds to the list of horrific dangers they already face on the track, such as broken legs and necks, fractured skulls, and heart attacks.
Last week, activists from the Shut Down Henlow Greyhound Stadium group met at a greyhound track to observe dogs struggling in the heat and to inform punters about the cruelty inherent in the “sport”. One dog, Droopy’s Groom, was carried off the track as temperatures reportedly reached 29 degrees. Now, he’ll be “retired” because of a hock injury.
The greyhound-racing industry is deeply unethical. These intelligent, sensitive animals are treated like commodities. Ninety-five per cent of the time, they’re muzzled and locked away in cages, and their physical and emotional needs are never fully met. Many suffer from crate and muzzle sores and agonising infestations of internal and external parasites.
Those who can’t keep up in a race are of no use to the industry, and nearly 10,000 greyhounds are “retired” in the UK every year. Some of these dogs are rehomed by charities, but around 3,700 disappear without a trace annually. Because of the secretive nature of the industry, it’s impossible to know exactly what happens to these dogs, but it’s likely that many of them are abandoned, killed, or exported to other countries.
What You Can Do
Sales of tickets to greyhound races are plummeting, and stadiums across the country are closing as a result. But greyhounds are still being exploited by the industry – and they need our assistance. You can help them by taking the following action:
• If there’s still a greyhound racetrack near you, inform racegoers of the cruelty dogs endure by leafleting outside the stadium.
• Write letters to the editors of your local newspapers explaining why it’s vital that we put an end to this cruel “sport”.
• If you live in Bedfordshire, please join the Shut Down Henlow Greyhound Stadium group to take part in demonstrations against the greyhound-racing industry.
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