Struggle for survival – the greyhounds and the Irish racing industry

i May 6th No Comments by

We have sent a donation to help Mary at Dungarvan Rescue in Ireland as she confronts the testing task or rehabilitating 10 rescued greyhounds.   A few weeks ago she was contacted by another rescue asking if she could help with some greyhounds. It transpired there were 150 of them living in dreadful conditions, although it must be said they were being fairly well fed but we don’t know what. Mary agreed to help with 10, other groups have taken many of the rest.

The poor greyhounds had come from a situation simply gone bad, although it seems the Irish Greyhound Board knew about the problem for around 2 years. Mary couldn’t give us too many more details because prosecutions are pending.  She will update us when she can.

The greyhounds are currently in boarding kennels, where they have so far been treated for fleas and other parasites and are doing quite well. Unfortunately several of these greyhounds are unused to being handled and will need quite a bit of work.

A few weeks ago Dungarvan took two greyhounds who were about to be shot and one of the them, Paddy, had a lump on one of his front legs. It was a tumour.  Having had all his long bones and legs x-rayed, Mary had to make the decision to have is leg amputated. It was removed totally from his shoulder, which was a huge op but has healed really well and he is doing great on his 3 legs. He is only seven and just sooooo sweet, he was a real trooper during recovery and is back playing around outside with the girl he came with. Luckily the cancer had not spread to any other bones so hopefully he will now get to enjoy a real life.

If you can also help Mary towards the costs because the rehabilitation of these greyhounds  will take a huge chunk out of Dungarvan’s costs but the greyhounds needed help – they were at the very real risk of being killed.  Dungarvan’s PayPal is

This is just the tip of the iceberg.  Last week when the Irish Parliamentary Agriculture Committee conducted the pre-legislative scrutiny of the Greyhound Industry Bill 2017, the Greyhound Rescue Association of Ireland (GRAI) said 2,896 greyhounds were submitted to Irish pounds from 2010 – 2015, of which 2,497 ended up being euthanised.  GRAI commented, “We’ve had trainers say to us: ‘If you can’t take this dog this week, he gets the needle.”  Mary at Dungarvan is facing this emotional blackmail now.  Who could say no?

The new Bill brought forward by Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed,includes increased provisions around the welfare of greyhounds.  More details are covered in this article in the Irish Times.

All of this comes at the time when Harold’s Cross greyhound track in Dublin has been closed by the Irish Greyhound Board and is up for sale, likely educational use, to contribute to its own debt relief.  Stakeholders are now picketing and withdrawing greyhounds from racing at Shelbourne track, also in Dublin.  While this action takes place, Shelbourne track is closed and losing money, adding to the Irish Greyhound Board’s debt.  The Irish Greyhound Board is asking the pickets to reconsider their action because it is costing the industry €30,000 per week.  In view of the stalemate, the press in Ireland is asking if the racing industry can be viable.  If not, sudden death like this could mean a mammoth rescue challenge for thousands of greyhounds.

We like other rescued greyhound advocates are watching closely.  We can only pray for a staggered demise.


Magic, Greyhound Compassion Volunteer, Puts His Feet Up

Magic, Greyhound Compassion Volunteer, Puts His Feet Up


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