Greyhound Racing: The twisted info keeps on coming

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I continue to collect the on-going statements out of the greyhound racing industry that not only boarder on asinine, they wallow in it.

But let’s start with May 22, when Terry Frei wrote a column for the Denver Post that contained the following: “In a perfect world, live racing could stand on its own four feet. ” He was writing mostly about horse racing, the equally-evil brother of dog racing.

“In a perfect world,” you Mr. Frei would not be writing about horse or dog racing. In a perfect world, both industries would be banned forever.

You apparently are not aware of the abuses in both industries, where horses and greyhounds are sent off to be shot, have their heads cut off or are slaughtered.

This next story goes back to February, but it’s worth a focus on this post. The Florida Greyhound Association does not support a call for decoupling in the state, of course.

David Bishop of the Florida Greyhound Association was quoted in an article by the Broward Palm Beach New Times as saying:  “The Florida Greyhound Association fully supports reporting at-track injuries and deaths, but this is more than just gathering numbers.”

Once again, we see an official from greyhound racing admit there are injuries and deaths in dog racing. But they still want to race dogs. There is no reason whatsoever in that position.

Our moral compasses tell us that admitting that dogs are being killed for gambling profits means the industry should be shut down immediately.

The industry also continues to make the bizarre claim that ending greyhound racing would lead to an increase in gambling. This is tinfoil-hat stuff. The industry would love to see the now-empty stands at dog tracks filled with people gambling on dog races.

That would increase gambling – right? So dose the industry not want to see an increase in gambling on dog racing??? Come on folks – let’s not go off on wild tangents that you really can’t possibly believe are true – at least I hope.

The dog racing industry suggesting it thinks an increase in gambling is a bad thing would be like Kim Kardashian saying she’s going to drop TV appearances and drop fashion and just wear sweatpants to major events.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

True colors of greyhound racing come out again with news about payments to breeders

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It is predictable and disgusting at the same time – the news that the West Virginia Racing Commission has handed over more than $10 million to greyhound breeders.

This dying industry is being held up to just benefit a few. The casinos could drop racing and hire the employees into the rest of the facilities. But they can’t because some elected officials in states like Florida and West Virginia are in their seats for no other reason than to benefit the few. These officials certainly are not there to represent the public and they certainly do not have any concern for animal welfare.

We should offer our thanks to the elected officials who are pushing for decoupling legislation.

The money being given to breeders could instead help with job training and caring for the dogs in need of new homes when greyhound racing shuts down for good.

And then there’s the breeding. My wife and I know of one couple in our state that has adopted four rescued racing greyhounds who all died of Osteosarcoma, a nasty form of cancer.

We have faced cancers with our rescued greyhounds. And we keep running into people at veterinary hospitals who tell their emotional stories of racing greyhounds with cancer, many at far too young an age.

When I’ve debated the pro-dog racing crowd online, they typically throw out the tired line that other big dogs get Osteosarcoma. My response includes the fact that comparing bad breeding practices with with bad breeding practices is a losing argument – every time.

And we have always argued about inbreeding. The racing insiders call it “line breeding.” But line breeding is just inbreeding on steroids. Every time we adopt a new, rescued greyhound, my wife goes on the racing site and looks up the dog’s lineage.

Way more often than not, she finds family connections to our current and previous greyhounds. And we find the same dogs are regularly listed as the parent or grandparent or great-grandparent of an unending list of dogs.

That’s inbreeding and it’s a small gene pool and both are not what we want. But in greyhound racing, the post-racing career doesn’t matter to the insiders. It’s about the profit motive.

I’ve written about cancer in dogs for many, many years and I’ve researched into the issue – a lot. Now that I have brain cancer, I plan to ramp up my efforts in speaking out against bad breeding that lead to cancers in dogs.

$10 million to breeders? That money could have gone to job training for track employs – as the state legislatures do what they should do today – shut down dog racing. Thanks to a request put in by Grey2K USA, these payments where brought to light.

The money came from the Greyhound Breeding Development Fund. It’s almost too nutty to believe. But we’ve heard enough out of racing to not be shocked.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Johnny Depp dog story has multiple bad actors

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Johnny Depp is in a spat with government officials in Australia over the screen actor’s two dogs, who he reportedly brought into the country without quarantining them for the required time period.

So now the dogs are being threatened with euthanasia if Depp does not take then back to the US.

Depp certainly carries his share of the blame for not addressing the requirements and therefore putting the dogs and others at risk. He should know better.

But Australia is a nation that allows greyhound racing and the government is still closing its eyes to the history of abuse and the current scandal over the use of live baiting in the so-called training of the dogs.

So Australia – if you really want to do the right thing for animals, show us some real steps. Announce tomorrow that due to the preponderance of evidence, greyhound racing has been immediately banned – forever.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Greyhound Racing: The scandals are expanding in a huge way

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On an international scale, the greyhound racing industry is stepping all over itself to (unintentionally) prove it should be shut down forever. The scandals are growing faster than a Fortune 500 CEO’s net worth.

The negative news out of Australia’s dog racing industry is fast-paced – to put it mildly. The Herald Sun reported today that a trainer has been accused of using amphetamines on two dogs.

Jenny Hunt has been suspended for 18 months.

And also today, two other trainers, this time at a Victorian track, were suspended for live baiting. 9News out of Australia reports reports 15 trainers and handlers at one facility were suspended in February.

On Tuesday, an article from cropped up on the Pack News Wire. Yes, you guessed it, Greyhound Racing NSW has disqualified a trainer for 12 months.

And it gets worse Down Under. reports Greyhound Racing Victoria basically looked the other way when it came to one of the training facilities at the heart of the five bailing scandal.

From the ABC report: The CEO of RSPCA Victoria, Dr Liz Walker, said that GRV’s failure to inform it of concerns at Tooradin demonstrated why self regulation in the industry had failed.

In Australia, individuals are being suspended on a regular basis. The insiders continue to act as if they are surprised by the news. Top-level trainers have been caught abusing animals and these folks are surprised. We’ve seen greyhound-racing abuse scandals involving abuse for decades around the world and these people are surprised?

The West Australian reported on May 8 that a “leading greyhound racing identity”  had been “stood down” over his recent conduct.

The Queensland Times ran an opinion piece on May 8 under the headline – “Clean up the mess and get on with the show.”

I would prefer – “Clean up the mess and ban the show,”

wrote the column and tried to compare scandals in cycling and rugby and the fact that these sports have not been shut down. The difference he fails to get is animals are involved and abuse and deaths are regularly involved with dog racing.

Dogs die on the tracks and dogs are discarded that don’t make the grad. And we’re fining that the training practices are horrible.

This isn’t hard to understand and only those with dollar signs to gain fail to understand. The writer tries the tired old excuse of claiming animals are abused in other ways, like hunting. But you can’t excuse one evil by claiming there are other evils.

That is a horrible thought process that perpetuates more abuse. So others who abuse animals in horrible ways can just say, “we get to abuse animals because the greyhound racing industry abuses animals.”

We must continue to work to end all of the torturing of animals. No one should get a free pass out, based other people abusing animals.

There is no way we should let this industry police itself. – anywhere. Of course, the solution is to ban dog racing everywhere. How many more abuse mulligans do they get?

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Brief: From the category of “There’s no such thing”

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At times we read a statements that defy logic to a level off the charts. Politicians engage in the practice all the time, on a daily basis. And of course, we see it consistently from people in the puppy mill and greyhound racing industries.

Too many times, politicians team up with entities like dog racing and puppy mills to extend the suffering.

We go across the big pond this week, in a column on the Irish Examiner website. At one point, the writer states, “Last week, at Punchestown, I spoke with a group of well-informed greyhound racing personalities who believed the Derby could be brought forward a few weeks...”

Science tells us there is no such thing as a “well-informed” individuals involved in dog racing. ANY well-informed person would have long ago understood the deaths and suffering in the industry are clear evidence that it should be banned forever.

The column included information about a change in the time of year for a greyhound race event. Those opposed to the change penned a letter that included these words – “… would like to highlight the complete dissatisfaction and anger …:”

Well … now they know how animal lovers feel about the industry. We are completely dissatisfied and angry that the suffering has been allowed to continue for decades and on to this day.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Another horse racing scandal – as the industry again does PED damage-control

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It is 2015 and for many, many years animal-welfare advocates have been calling for an end to horse racing – or at minimum the end to the abuses in horse racing.

And yet we continue to see stories like the one that flashed across the Pack News Wire today. The Association of Racing Commissioners International (RCI) has called for new regulations on the use of Cobalt throughout racing across the globe.

An article on notes the substance is used to enhance performance, but can damage the thyroid gland and can be toxic to the horse’s heart.

But Cobalt is used anyway by at least some strainers.

Hell – the lure is so strong to win at all costs that human athletes are risking their lives with PEDs. Is it so hard to understand how humans with dollar signs flashing over they heads can so easily inject animals with PEDs?

These people will always try to find ways to slip around the rules. They need that money on that wall; they want that money on that wall.

The use of animal in gambling operations must be banned immediately. The profit motives will always be too strong and in the case of racing, the dogs and horses will continue to suffer. Just over the last couple of months, we’ve seen the results.

If we don’t ban animal racing, we will continue to read articles like this one and stories with topics far worse for many years to come. The racing industries will just continue to claim they are working on the next scandal – on rinse-repeat – over and over again.

It’s been that way for decades and our elected officials just keep looking the other way. After all, if it’s about money, it’s an excuse for anything. If only we had more elected officials with backbones. But right now, that goal is far in the distance.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

More dead racing greyhounds – a story that keeps being repeating

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Here we are again – reading about the discovery of more dead racing greyhounds. This time, it is 55 bodies found in Australia – north of Brisbane.

The Daily News reports local police as saying the bodies were “in various states of decomposition,” which would indicate the bodies were dumped over time.

We continue to read horrible news out of dog racing every week. But the insiders keep acting as is each report is something new and they are going to clean things up. Problem is, we’ve been heard this line for so many years.

The dogs who don’t make the grade keep getting killed, while industry insiders keep claiming the dogs rejected by the industry are all adopted out.

How many chances will the industry get in the US and in countries like Australia and Great Britain? At some point, the elected officials in these countries need to grow backbones and stand up against the racing lobbyists. We can’t let the profit motives of a few continue to dominate, while the suffering of the dogs goes on.

Greyhound racing has inherent and systemic problems – serious problems that have gone on for many, many years. The industry keep claiming each scandal – over and over again – is something new and it is going to be cleared up. So after decades now, this is not going to pan out.

The dogs can stand it no longer. End dog racing everywhere today and let the rescue groups save the dogs.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Pack’s Sunday Satire: Dog racing switches to humans

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Breaking News (we never hear that phrase from cable news any more)

The greyhound racing industry will drop the use of dogs later this month. Industry leaders in the United States, Great Britain and Australia will take the lead by putting on the muzzles themselves – for the first races.

Then they’ll try to scam as many “volunteers” as possible around the globe to race.

In the US, the first so-called biped racing event is set for May 2 in Florida and will be called “The Dumber Than Dirt Derby.”

“We messed up,” said race coordinator Mumford Claptrap. “We had all of the flyers, banners and signs printed before we realized that the name made us look bad.

“So we’ll just use it this year. And hey – can anyone tell me what a biped is?”

When asked about possible injuries and deaths to the human racers, Claptrap said, “We never worried about that stuff with the dogs, so I guess we’ll stick with the same system. And the percentages were soooo low. So the impact on human racers will be no big deal.

“We looked at study after study and found that good money can be had on the gambling bets for human racing,” Claptrap said. “That’s all we every wanted. The breeders have agreed to switch over to training friends to run in circle.

“What difference does it make who we exploit?”

Now let’s look at a few things industry insiders actually said recently:

It Kansas this week, a racing greyhound named “PJ Burninitdown” was sold at auction for a record $85,000.

NGA Executive Director Gary Guccione was quoted in the article as saying, “It was magical. It just all came together. It was the opposite of the perfect storm. Everything jelled.”

Magical? He was quoted as using that phrase. Dogs are dying on a regular basis on tracks on numerous states and this man call sale like this – “magical.”

Over in Australia, a headline in the Herald Sun read, “Industry will bounce back and sparkle again.” This editorial is nothing short of disgusting.

The writer starts off with a reports of dead greyhounds in a pit and dead racehorses and live baiting in the country. And then adds this – “But maybe it’s the bad look before things get better; that the vigilance of stewards and administrators to go hard without fear or favour in all three versions of the one sport — racing animals for sport and gambling — will lead to a relatively trusted and prosperous era. Australian Trainers’ ­Association president Robbie Griffiths thinks so.”

No – It’s 2015, after decades of abuse in greyhound racing across the globe. You don’t get to claim this is a surprise and NOW you’ll clean it up. You are out of chances and it’s time to shut the industry down forever. You don’t get to claim ignorance when the ignorance and abuse and cruelty has gone on for decades – with the horrors clearly documented.

Then the writer of the piece went completely into the land of make believe and blames those who exposed the horrors of the industry – “Greyhound adoption was going gangbusters until the ­infamous Four Corners report. Requests plummeted, but they will rise once the hysteria and headlines subside.

One cannot get more misguided than that. Blaming the reporting of abuse for the reduction in adoptions? I would have had a hard time coming up a satire quote that hit the silly chart that far up the bar.

Stay tuned – there’s more to come.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Florida bill could end barbaric greyhound racing – but needs the backbone of more lawmakers

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I am more determined than ever to see an end to the barbaric industry of greyhound racing. As I get back into the Pack Mentality Blog now, I hope to post more frequently on this topic and others.

This week, we’re seeing activity in the Florida legislature on dog racing and we can only hope the more logical and compassionate heads will finally prevail.

The Florida Finance and Tax Committee used a 10-8 vote this week to move along a gambling bill. But the News Herald reports there’s still an uphill battle for its overall passage. Yes, compassion is still battling those who cannot understand basic facts – those who fail to see animal suffering on its most obvious levels.

One of the stunningly idiotic arguments we’re seeing suggests if dog racing goes away it means more gambling. The articles digs into other organizations coming in to add gambling or tables being added to replace dog tracks.

So in one manner, one form of gambling will replace another? SO WHAT? The difference will be – no dogs will be slaughtered for gambling. Even if more gambling is added, at least it won’t involve deaths and injuries to dogs. Small children can figure this stuff out.

So am I clear on this? Are the pro-racing people trying to excuse dog racing by claiming its demise as a gambling industry will lead to gambling? Do they think we’re stupid or do they have the brain function of a broken brick?

All we need to do is shut down dog racing and save the dogs from suffering. The state legislatures can work out the details of what happens within the gambling system going forward. Why do we keep seeing these idiotic arguments across so many issues?

But then again, we do know the answer – it typically involves profit motives. In cases like this, the need for big profit turns people stupid.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic

Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey to phase out the use of elephants

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FINALLY, the elephants have some good news. The Associated Press reports today that the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus will phrase out the use of elephants by 2018.

A special thank you should go out to all organizations who have been speaking out against the use of animals in circuses and to the communities that have passed ordinances against the use of animals in entertainment venues such as this.

I recall many years ago when I attended a local county fair and went into a tent where a circus was performing. There was a pause in the show as I approached the center ring.

Suddenly, an elephant walked over to where I was standing and looked right at me. He was very sad-faced and it really impacted me. I had to walk out.

Hopefully, this news story will lead to more bans on the use animals in similar ways. Certainly greyhound racing is another one. More animals are dying there than in the circuses.

PACK MENTALITY BLOG: Compassion - teamed with Science and Logic