The Greyhound racing industry has welcomed a new “cradle to the grave” welfare charter
The Greyhound racing industry in the UK and Ireland has signed up to a new welfare charter, which will introduce a basic standard of care for all Greyhounds from birth through to retirement.
The 16-point plan and accompanying Guide to Best Practice have been produced by a forum of leading animal welfare organisations,following a debate on the welfare of racing Greyhounds in the House of Lords last summer.
The charter features advice on day-to-day care, including during travelling and training, discourages indiscriminate breeding, and emphasises the importance of the dogs’ physical and mental well being throughout their lives.
The scheme has been accepted by all key players within the racing industry, including the British Greyhound Racing Board (BGRB), the National Greyhound Racing Club (NGRC), Ireland’s Bord na gCon and the Irish Coursing Club.
“The charter is a testament to the co-operation Greyhound racing enjoys with the nation’s major animal welfare charities,” says Geoffrey Thomas on behalf of the BGRB and the NGRC. “It’s a great foundation document for our common aim – the best interests of the racing Greyhound.”
The charter also calls for the industry to ensure all racecourses introduce properly funded home-finding schemes for retired Greyhounds and denounces the use of performance enhancing or reducing drugs.
“We now have a solid commitment to canine welfare from the people who actually race the dogs,” says Clarissa Baldwin, chairman of the Greyhound Forum. “Its implementation will greatly improve the lives of many thousands of racing Greyhounds.
“Greyhounds are beautiful, noble creatures which deserve a full, active and happy life – even after their racing careers have ended.”
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