Anti-dog racing groups say Mardi Gras Casino & Resort in Nitro, West Virginia, has had an alarming number of greyhound injuries over the past six years — more than one a day.
West Virginia Racing Commission records analyzed by Massachusetts-based Grey2K USA show that, in addition to 1.4 injuries a day, 152 dogs were euthanized during that period, only seven of those because of illnesses.
Carey Theil, executive director of Grey2K, the anti-dog racing agency that spent years trying to obtain the records, told the Charleston Daily Mail that the numbers are the highest the group has seen at any U.S. track.
An ASPCA spokesperson called the figures “appalling.”
Track executive Dan Adkins said the number of injuries has dropped the past two years and is near the national average.
Adkins insists dog health is a top priority for the track’s parent company, Hartman and Tyner Inc. of Hallandale, Fla. Out of more than 43,400 racing starts last year, he said, there were only 25 deaths.
The records show about 750 broken bones, and more than 300 career-ending injuries.
Grey2K says the true number could be even higher than state records indicate because more than 13 months of data is missing. The Racing Commission told the Daily Mail it could not find those records.
Posted by John Woestendiek February 23rd, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal cruelty, animal welfare, animals, aspca, carey theil, cruelty to animals, deaths, documents, dogs, euthanasia, grey2k, grey2kusa, greyhound, injured, injuries, mardi gras casino & resort, nitro, pets, racing, records, west virginia, west virginia racing commission
Runner’s World magazine isn’t on my list of must-reads, anymore than jogging is on my list of must-dos, but I’m tempted to slowly walk out and get the latest issue right now — for it has gone (you guessed it) to the dogs.
Everything you ever wanted to know about dogs and running with them seems to be covered — from the top running breeds to how to avoid dangerous run-ins with dogs. It also has an interesting debate on whether dogs should be allowed off leash on running trails.
What are the top running breeds? Depends on the type of running you are doing. Runner’s World recommends weimaraners, goldendoodles, German shorthaired pointers, vizslas and Jack Russell terriers for long steady runs of more than 10 miles.
If you’re into shorter, speedier jaunts, go with a pit bull, greyhound, retriever or beagle.
If you’re running through more rugged terrain, or obstacles, choose a border collie, vizsla or Belgian sheepdog.
The magazine also suggests certain breeds for hot weather runs and cold weather runs.
Being Runner’s World, the magazine doesn’t suggest what type of dog is best for laying around and watching TV. But I can help you out there. Bulldog!
You can find links to all the dog-related articles in the issue here.
Posted by John Woestendiek August 13th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, beagle, best, border collie, breeds, dog, dogs, german shorthaired pointers, goldendoodles, greyhound, issue, jack russell terriers, jogging, magazine, off-leash, pets, pit bull, retriever, runner's world, running, running with dogs, safety, trails, training, vizslas, weimaraners
Fifteen years ago, more than 400 people attended the national convention of the American Greyhound Track Owners Association.
This year’s convention, in Las Vegas, is expected to draw 120, the Las Vegas Sun reports — yet another sign that greyhound racing’s days are numbered.
The recession, competition from casinos, state legislatures increasing gambling taxes and public opposition to the sport have combined to threaten the future of dog racing, but the industry’s downfall can be traced to the 1980s and 1990s when state lotteries were introduced and casinos began to spread beyond Las Vegas and Atlantic City. Wagering on greyhound races in the United States declined from $3.5 billion in 1991 to $1.1 billion in 2007, according to the Association of Racing Commissioners.
The continued decline in dog racing has become even more painful for casino owners who are required to subsidize the tracks as a condition of operating casinos with slot machines.
As Roy Berger, executive vice president of the Dairyland Greyhound Park in Wisconsin, which closed last year, put it: “The product became an antique. We were an 8-track cassette store in a world of CDs.”
(Photo: American Greyhound Track Owners Association)
Posted by John Woestendiek March 23rd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal, association, casinos, closings, closures, convention, dairyland, decline, dogs, dwindling, fading, future, gambling, greyhound, greyhounds, las vegas, news, pets, shrinking, sports, track owners, tracks, wagering, wagers
More than 3,000 people poured into Raynham Park over the weekend for the final day of live greyhound racing at the 69-year-old park, its last day in Massachusetts and, possibly, its last day in all of New England.
The end of greyhound racing in in Massachusetts is the result of a public referendum — 56 percent of voters favored banning the so-called sport — and part of a national trend driven by a mix of animal-rights concerns and declining track attendance, according to the Boston Globe.
Raynham Park staged its final race Saturday night.
Live dog racing has also ceased in Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and, temporarily at least, Rhode Island. It continues at 23 tracks in seven states, 13 of them in Florida, according to the anti-dog racing organization GREY2K USA, which formed in 2001. At that time there were 49 tracks in 15 states.
“I just thank Massachusetts voters for giving greyhounds a second chance,’’ Christine A. Dorchak, president of GREY2K USA. “We have finally reached this wonderful day.’’
Many of the dogs, maintained by a network of kennels, will move on to race in other states, but several hundred will be looking for new homes. Raynham is working with GREY2K and the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals-Angell Animal Medical Center to aid their adoption.
“People who voted to end dog racing should step forward now and take a dog home,’’ Dorchak said. “This is the happy ending we all worked for, and these dogs make wonderful pets.’’
For the first six months of 2010, the track will remain open for simulcasting, where patrons bet on horse and dog races from across the country shown live on closed-circuit televisions.
Posted by John Woestendiek December 28th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: adopt, adoption, animal rights, animal welfare, betting, closings, closures, dog, dog racing, end, final, gambling, grey2kusa, greyhound, greyhounds, last, massachusetts, race, racing, raynham park, track
Greyhound rescuers in Wisconsin are preparing to find homes for hundreds of racing dogs that will lose their jobs when Dairyland Greyhound Park in Kenosha, the last of Wisconsin’s five greyhound racing tracks, closes at the end of the year.
Pat Zimmerman of Fond du Lac, a member of Heart Bound Greyhound Adoption, estimated between 300 and 900 dogs will need to find homes. The group will be taking many of the dogs into foster homes to prepare them for adoption, according to the Post Crescent in Appleton.
Zimmerman said that some of the racing greyhounds will go home with their owners, others will be relocated to out-of-state racetracks, and a third group will go back to racing farms to be bred.
Meanwhile, the newspaper reported, the state chapter of Greyhound Pets of America is trying to quell a rumor being circulated through email and Facebook claiming 900 greyhounds could be killed if they’re not adopted soon.
In addition to the closing in Wisconsin, hundreds more greyhounds will be in need of homes in connection with the closing at the end of this year of Phoenix Greyhound Park, one of three remaining dog tracks in Arizona.
For a list of links to greyhound adoption websites, visit Grey2kusa.
Posted by John Woestendiek December 8th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adoption, arizona, close, closing, closures, dairyland, euthanasia, grey2kusa, greyhound, greyhound park, greyhound pets of america, greyhounds, heart bound, homes, kenosha, needed, phoenix, racers, racing, rumor, tracks, wisconsin
Greyhound racing is nearing the finish line in Wisconsin.
Dairyland Greyhound Park, in Kenosha — the last operating track in the state – announced Tuesday it will close its doors after racing ends Dec. 31.
Dairyland was one of five Wisconsin tracks that opened after a 1987 amendment to the state constitution allowed for a state-run lottery and legalized parimutuel betting. The others closed earlier, unable to compete with the state’s tribal casino offerings that began to emerge in the 1990s.
According to the Kenosha News, the 19-year-old track has lost $17 million over the last seven years.
Dairyland has remained in operation in recent years with the hope that the Menominee Nation wins federal and state approval to develop a $1 billion casino complex on the site. The tribe is now in litigation to overturn a January denial of the project.
Closing the track will put about 180 people out of work, and, track officials say, leave the 900 dogs that race at the facility in need of homes.
If you’re interest in adopting, here’s how to find a greyhound rescue near you.
Posted by John Woestendiek November 12th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: adopt, adopting, adoption, animal welfare, betting, cease, closing, dairyland, dog, dogs, ending, gambling, greyhound, greyhound rescue, greyhounds, homes, industry, jobs, kenosha, needed, racing, rescue, shutting down, stop, track, tracks, wisconsin
Twenty greyhounds died or were euthanized after races in Texas last year, according to records obtained by GREY2K USA, a Massachusetts-based group seeking to end dog racing nationally.
The 20 were among more than 310 that had minor-to-major injuries.
Christine Dorchak, president and general counsel of Grey2K, said the figures from the Texas Racing Commission show the need to halt an industry in which dead and injured dogs are considered “a cost of doing business.”
Breeders and track proponents say the injuries and deaths represent just a tiny percentage, when compared to the tens of thousands of times dogs collectively race around tracks. Nearly two-thirds of 2008 injuries were rated as minor, according to the commission.
“For us, that’s like saying no dogs should be athletic,” Diane Whiteley, a breeder and executive director of the Texas Greyhound Association, told the Houston Chronicle. “Anybody that’s ever had a greyhound that’s been injured feels awful about that. They’re like your kids.”
Gulf Greyhound Park in La Marque, the only Texas track that currently has live dog racing, accounted for most of the 2008 injuries with its year-round racing schedule. Valley Race Park in Harlingen raced part of last year and since has taken a break in live racing.
(Photo by Denise McFadden, courtesy of Grey2kusa.org)
Posted by John Woestendiek October 27th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, christine dorchak, deaths, dogs, grey2kusa, greyhound, greyhounds, gulf greyhound park, harlingen, injuries, la marque, races, racing, texas, texas racing commission, tracks, valley race park
The National Greyhound Adoption Program has added to the bounty placed on Michael Vick: For each sacking of the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback, it will donate ten cases of snacks to a Pennsylvania shelter — and a case to the tackler, as well.
Last week, Main Line Animal Rescue, outside Philadelphia, published an ad in the Washington Post, offering to donate five bags of dog food to local animal shelters in Washington D.C. every time Michael Vick gets sacked during the Eagles game against the Redskins on October 26.
The group is considering running a similar ad in every city to which the Eagles travel for a game.
The National Greyhound Adoption Program has upped the ante.
It is promising, for every tackle of the convicted dogfighter, ten cases of Wellness snacks for Pennsylvania shelters.
The NGAP offer applies to both home and away games.
“If the player that does the tackling has a dog, we will be happy to send the player a case to their home office,” David Wolf, NGAP director.
(Pennsylvania shelters can contact the organization if they would like to take part by emailing email@example.com)
Posted by John Woestendiek September 14th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: abuse, adoption, advertisement, bounty, cruelty, david wolf, dog food, dogfighting, donation, eagles, greyhound, main line animal rescue, michael vick, national greyhound adoption program, philadelphia, philadelphia eagles, quarterback, sacks, tackle, treats, vick
The Poarch Band of Creek Indians has purchased controlling interests of dog racing tracks in Mobile and Pensacola, according to at least one racing official.
The purchase still requires approval by the National Indian Gaming Association, according to Al.com.
The tribe owns two casinos in Alabama — the Riverside Entertainment Center in Wetumpka and the Tallapoosa Entertainment Center in Montgomery.
Gov. Bob Riley has been strongly against gambling in Alabama throughout his two terms, and has stirred controversy in recent months with his opposition to so-called bingo machines. Riley’s Task Force on Illegal Gambling has confiscated a number of gambling machines.
The tribe had long been one of the primary opponents of allowing gambling machines at the dog tracks in Mobile and Pensacola.
Posted by John Woestendiek August 25th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alabama, creek indians, dog, florida, gambling, greyhound, mobile, national indian gaming association, pensacola, poarch band, racing, tracks
As Rhode Island debates the fate of its only greyhound racing track, an advocacy group is planning a weekend rally calling for an end to the sport in the state, the Associated Press reports.
The group GREY2K USA, a chief proponent of a successful ballot question in Massachusetts last year to ban greyhound racing at the state’s two tracks, is planning a Saturday rally in Providence to urge Rhode Islanders to ban the sport as well.
The Massachusetts ban takes effect in January. And New Hampshire’s two remaining tracks plan to end live racing.
“The handwriting is on the wall, and it makes little sense for lawmakers to stand up and buck this trend,” said Christine Dorchak, president and general counsel of the organization.
In Rhode Island the debate has focused more on the sport’s profitability rather than on the treatment of dogs. Legislators awant to expand greyhound racing. Over the objection of Gov. Don Carcieri, lawmakers have moved to force a bankrupt, state-licensed slot parlor to run 200 days of live racing at its greyhound track even though current law only requires 125.
Carcieri, a Republican, vetoed the legislation, but lawmakers in the Democratic-dominated General Assembly say they expect to override it. Supporters of the dog racing bill say it’s necessary to save 225 jobs, including pari-mutuel clerks, bartenders and security workers, and preserve tax revenue. They also argue the public shouldn’t be penalized for what they say are the bad business decisions of the owners of the gambling parlor, called Twin River.
Posted by John Woestendiek July 16th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: debate, dog racing, dogs, gambling, governor, grey2kusa, greyhound, greyhound racing, legislature, massachusetts, racing, rhode island, tracks, twin river