A woeful track record

Dennis Anderson and rescue greyhound Leo.

SATURDAY April 17 saw the finals for Perth’s two biggest greyhound racing events, with dogs injured in four races and one forced to compete with an existing leg puncture wound. Coalition for the Protection of Greyhounds president Dennis Anderson says we need to stop betting on cruelty.

PERTH’S two biggest greyhound races – the annual Perth Cup and the Galaxy – have again seen stewards stand down dogs due to injuries. Is it really worth betting on such animal suffering?

The dogs were competing in seven and eight-dog races, because Racing and Wagering WA has failed to introduce six-dog fields as per industry-funded research (2017). This shows smaller fields significantly reduce injuries due to less track congestion, especially at turns.

Six-dog racing is the norm in the UK and South Australia, but clearly betting revenue is more important than greyhound welfare in WA, despite RWWA’s claims to the contrary. 

No-one would risk their pet dog like this, so why greyhounds?

Meanwhile, Perth Cup sponsor Sky Racing contributes nothing to greyhound welfare, nor does its parent company Tabcorp. All they care about is the betting revenue and so do governments.

That’s why in 2018, the WA government gave the dog racing industry $19.1 million. In 2019 it was $19.8 million and in 2020, this was raised by $2.3 million. 

Given the racing industry upped its revenue during Covid there’s no reason to give taxpayer dollars to this cruel industry.

Reform is not difficult. The Coalition for the Protection of Greyhounds has a five-point plan for greyhound welfare: safer racing, whole-of-life tracking for greyhounds, a reduction in breeding, funding of sanctuaries and increased penalties for mistreatment.

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