On 15 May 2016 Greyhound Compassion and 24 fellow galgo advocate organisations wrote to His Majesty the King Felipe VI imploring him to withdraw his support for El Campeonato de Espana de Galgos en Campo Copa Su Majestad El Rey (the King’s Cup for the annual galgo coursing championship in Spain).
We did not receive a reply to our letter (text below). Please therefore sign our petition to urge the King to withdraw his royal association with El Campeonato de Espana de Galgos en Campo Copa Su Majestad El Rey.
His Majesty the King Felipe VI
c/o The Head of the Household
Mr. Jaime Alfonsín Alfonso
Palacio de La Zarzuela
Carretera del Pardo s/n
28071 Madrid, Spain
Your Majesty the King Felipe VI,
We write to you not only as the King of the Kingdom of Spain but also in your capacity as UN Eminent Person to draw to your attention to the good works of an animal shelter we work with in Medina del Campo, Protectora de Animales y Medioambiente, Scooby (Scooby). Scooby, the largest animal shelter in Spain, houses many abandoned animals but in particular, hundreds of Spanish galgos. Greyhound Compassion raises funds in the UK for the galgos in Scooby’s care. We are also part of an international network of volunteers supporting Scooby spanning: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Slovenia, Switzerland, UK, USA. Together we raise funds for the shelter and volunteer on site to rescue, rehabilitate and rehome the galgos taken in by the Scooby shelter. Together we have been doing this volunteer work for the last 25 years.
As you are probably aware, thousands of galgos are bred annually to try to produce the champion for El Campeonato de Espana de Galgos en Campo Copa Su Majestad El Rey. Hare coursing is not a sport, rather it is a cruel practice for the galgos and the hares. Thousands of galgos are either abandoned, taken to shelters or perreras, or worse, killed inhumanely when the coursing season is over and the dogs are no longer useful for the galgueros. You may have read prior press coverage about galgo hangings in the pine groves or their abandonment in dry wells in the Spanish countryside. One discarded galgo Scooby rescued from one of these wells was saved because her fall was so well cushioned by the corpses at the foot of the well. The Scooby shelter in Medina del Campo will certainly not put its head above the parapet to raise this issue because they cannot jeopardise their relationship with the galgueros from whom they rescue the galgos, hence our letter to you.
We are struck that as the King of the Kingdom of Spain your regal office is linked inextricably to the annual championship through the Copa Su Majestad El Rey, an annual championship which conceals widespread unscrupulous breeding, exploitation, neglect, injury and death. In addition, we appeal to you as the UN Eminent Person, who makes contributions internationally towards enhancing the importance of voluntary work, to consider the fact that the small shelter in Medina del Campo is supported by an international network of volunteers who are dedicating their free time to clean up a Spanish problem occurring under your reign. The international spotlight is very much on this issue as the diversity of volunteers supporting Scooby is constantly growing throughout our home countries. The galgos rehomed abroad are visible at fund-raising events in these countries and word of mouth spreads literally and via social media.
We appeal to you to withdraw your association with El Campeonato de Espana de Galgos en Campo as a result of the Copa Su Majestad El Rey. This would certainly be more befitting of your reign over a modern society in the twenty first century.
Galgos del Fenix (Finland)
L’Appel de Levriers (France)
Dierenopvang Koningen (The Netherlands)
Greyhound Friends (The Netherlands)
SOS Levriers (France)
Greyhounds In Nood Nederland
Liaison Levriers (France)
Scooby North America & Canada
Hrtjisvet Slovenije (Slovenia)
Une Histoire de Galgos (France)
Galgos Greyhounds and More (Switzerland)
Makrina Diakaki (Scooby Australia)