Oh Dog! I am so excited! Today I am talking with Carey M. Theil, Executive Director of GREY2K USA. He’s going to tell us about greyhound racing and why his organization is working to end the practice.
Rumpy: Thanks for being my guest today!
Carey: Our resident greyhound Zoe says “woof.” 🙂
Rumpy: What is greyhound racing anyway?
Carey: Greyhound racing is a commercial industry in which thousands of dogs are used as numbers to gamble on.
Rumpy: Gamble on dogs? This wasn’t even on my radar until I moved to Florida. How many dogs are we talking about?
Carey: Unfortunately, we do not know exactly how many greyhounds are in the racing industry. We do know that in 2012, 10,157 greyhounds were individually registered to race for the first time nationally. We also know that the dog racing industry has estimated that there are as many as 8,000 dogs at Florida racetracks.
Rumpy: Are you kidding me? That’s a lot of dogs! What’s life like for a racing dog?
Carey: There are many humane problems in greyhound racing. For example, thousands of racing greyhounds dogs endure lives of confinement, kept in small cages that are barely large enough for them to stand up or turn around.
Rumpy: How sad!
Carey: Also, many greyhounds suffer serious injuries. We are opposed to greyhound racing because of industry standard practices that we believe go against mainstream values, like the system of confined housing that is used.
Rumpy: I agree. That’s no way for a dog to live his or her life. So how many racetracks are we talking about?
Carey: There are only 22 operational dog tracks in the entire country, and of those 13 are in Florida.
Rumpy: Why are so many here?
Carey: Even though these facilities are losing money, they continue to hold dog races because the law says that they must do so in order to have other forms of gambling. So these tracks have essentially become profitable poker rooms that happen to have dogs running around in circles, with no one watching the races.
Rumpy: That’s ridiculous! What can humans do to help you end greyhound racing?
Carey: There are many things that people can do to help greyhounds. First, they should visit our website at GREY2KUSA.org and learn about the humane issues involved with greyhound racing. Then, they should tell other people about these problems, and encourage them not to gamble at dog tracks.
Rumpy: Right! Please don’t support dog racing! What else?
Carey: Also, they should write to their state lawmakers and say that they are opposed to greyhound racing, and would like to see the law changed so that dog racing is outlawed.
Rumpy: If you live in Florida, Alabama, Arkansas, Texas, Arizona, Iowa, or West Virgina, please write your state legislators, and ask your neighbors and friends to do so as well. Also, while there currently is no dog racing in Oregon, Connecticut, Kansas, Colorado, or Wisconsin, it’s still legal to do so.
Carey: Finally, your readers should consider adopting a greyhound. They make wonderful companions!
Rumpy: They are beautiful dogs!
Carey: Most of these things will be more effective for people who live in a state with active dog tracks, but everyone can help. For example, homes are needed for rescued greyhounds all over the country.
Rumpy: Wow! Thanks so much for being my guest today Carey Theil. Here’s hoping that Greyhound racing is soon a thing of the past!
All photos are the property of GREY2K USA