Source: MIL-OSI Submissions
Source: SAFE NZ
This year will be the 50th anniversary of the Melbourne Cup of greyhound racing. The Silver Collar is described by the Auckland Greyhound Racing Club as a ‘gruelling’ and ‘stamina-sapping affair,’ raced over an ‘extreme’ 779 meters, which is twice as long as a typical race. For the dogs that reach the finals on 13 June, it’s the equivalent of a human running back-to-back marathons on consecutive weekends.
Given the Government’s serious concerns for dogs in the racing industry, SAFE spokesperson Will Appelbe said the Silver Collar should be cancelled this year.
“The situation for dogs in the racing industry is pretty dire,” said Appelbe. “Injuries and deaths are happening weekly, and this race is extremely dangerous .”
Minister for Racing Grant Robertson and Minister responsible for animal welfare Meka Whaitiri announced a Government review of the greyhound racing industry last week. Robertson said he was concerned about track safety and cited ‘far too many incidents’ recently where dogs have died or been injured and can’t rule out shutting down the industry altogether.
Since January seven dogs have died and more than 270 have been injured as a result of racing.
SAFE is supporting a protest of the Silver Collar race organised by Auckland locals.
“The Minister for Racing has said he’s not convinced the industry is meeting its animal welfare obligations. He’s absolutely right, and a punishing race like this should be cancelled pending the outcome of the Government’s review.”
SAFE is New Zealand’s leading animal rights organisation.
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– Last week the Government announced a review of the greyhound racing industry, following reports from SAFE, Greyhound Protection League and Grey2K USA Worldwide of ongoing cruelty within the greyhound racing industry. In the announcement, Minister for Racing Grant Robertson said he is not satisfied the industry is improving animal welfare, and Greyhound Racing New Zealand has failed to provide sufficient information on changes they are making.
– The Greyhound Protection League is running a petition, which asks Parliament to pass legislation to ban greyhound racing and to require all dogs that have been bred for racing be rehomed and rehabilitated.
– Photos of dogs rescued by the Greyhound Protection League.
– Greyhound racing is legal in only seven countries. A ban in the Australian Capital Territory came into force in April 2018, followed by a ban in Florida, USA, in November 2018. Since Florida is home to 11 of the USA’s 17 active dog tracks, this is a signal that greyhound racing is about to become a thing of the past in the United States.
– Information about greyhound racing in New Zealand.