The truth is that dog racing is a dying industry—since 2001, more than two dozen dog tracks have closed all across the country and dog racing now represents less than one percent of all wagers placed each year in the United States. Currently, the practice is illegal in forty states. Shelters and rescues are negatively impacted by this industry, and we as animal welfare professionals need to take a stand against it. Learn the facts about greyhound racing and how to protect greyhounds in your state.
Dogs shouldn't be running for their lives
Dog racing has been replaced by more modern forms of entertainment. Between 2001 and 2014, the total amount gambled on greyhound racing nationwide declined by 70%. State tax revenue from dog racing also continues to drop. In the same time frame, state dog race revenue declined by more than 82%. There are currently only nineteen dog tracks remaining in six states across the nation. Here is a glance at greyhound racing in the U.S.:
- In forty states, commercial dog racing is illegal.
- In four states, all dog tracks have closed and ceased live racing but a ban on racing has not yet been enacted. Those states are Connecticut, Kansas, Oregon and Wisconsin.
- In six states, parimutuel betting (or mutual betting) on dog racing remains legal and operational. These states are Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Iowa, Texas and West Virginia.
Cruelty and neglect solely for profit
Greyhound racing has severe animal welfare consequences and creates hardship for both public and private agencies which absorb the costs of the suffering of these dogs and the increased production of greyhounds in the state.
Racing events lead to animal exploitation and suffering solely for profit. The injuries sustained during the races are just the tip of the iceberg. Thousands of animals are injured and die or are killed in the training process, and dogs are forced to endure intensive confinement when off the track. From January 2008 through October 2016, a total of 13,989 greyhound injuries have been documented, including broken legs, head traumas, electrocution and broken backs.
Greyhounds deserve to be members of the family, and it is time to end this inhumane practice. If you live in a state without a ban on greyhound racing and are interested in working towards the end of this unacceptable cruelty, connect with your state director.