WBUR

Greyhound Racing Goes To The Dogs

Massachusetts voters have approved a ban on greyhound racing.

The measure will force the state’s two greyhound race tracks to close their doors by Jan. 1, 2010.

Supporters argued greyhound racing is inhumane and that greyhounds are routinely injured during races, including broken legs, paralysis and even death from cardiac arrest.

The state’s dog tracks say the greyhounds are well cared for and looked after by veterinarians. They also pointed to their efforts to ensure greyhounds are adopted once their racing days are over.

The track owners say eliminating the tracks will take a financial toll on the state. They said up to 1,000 workers will lose their jobs.

A similar question narrowly lost eight years ago.

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  • http://www.zekey-boy.org Elsie

    My greyhound is retired and raced at both MA tracks. He was treated well. And in fantastic shape upon adoption. His outlook in life was positive and not of a beaten dog. I am sad that the great lengths these 2 tracks aspired to achieve are ending in defeat. I believe the hounds love to race each other. And lived life as pro athletes comfortably, albeit not in a loving family environment. They were well cared for. For Zeke, after breaking 2 toes in a race, his lessor enthusiasm was enough to warrant him retirement. They didn’t force him to run to his death. They let him retire. Young and healthy.

    I hope that all these greyhounds will find good loving homes as there will be so many more greyhounds in need of a home. Presently, 93% of greyhounds find homes after racing thanks to rescue organizations and cooperating tracks like those in MA. I hope the hearts of those who voted to ban greyhound racing will also adopt them and provide for them. For all these hounds will be losing their room & board.

    To me, strong legislation criminalizing race-dog owners and handlers for inappropriate treatment or substandard care of the dogs should be in place. Not a ban on racing. Every racing hound is tattooed. Every owner should be tracked and accounted for every dog’s health. Or maybe regulating more limits for number of races and amount of exercise… But from the ads I viewed, it looked more like a political campaign full of splash but not substance. Greyhounds in retirement spend the majority of their day merrily sleeping on a favorite pillow for hours on end. They are lean, running dogs. And sprinters who tire easily. Their crates were their bedrooms. No one is calling for a ban on NASCAR when drivers, pit workers and audience members can be killed from their racing accidents.

    Greyhounds love to run and race each other. Lets hope breeders will continue to breed these magnificent beings so I can love at least mine and maybe more in my future. I am at least thankful that all the activism of the past has provided for my Zeke, a wonder experience as a racing greyhound before his even more wonderful life in retirement. I can only hope that I will see more greyhounds as family pets. They are, in my opinion, the greatest dogs in the world!

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