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    Greyhound Welfare Progress Amid Cost-of-Living and Homing Crises
Greyhound Welfare Progress Amid Cost-of-Living and Homing Crises
GBGB logo. source: gbgb.org.uk

Greyhound Welfare Progress Amid Cost-of-Living and Homing Crises

Track Injury and Retirement Data Show High Welfare Standards Persist

The Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB) has published its track injury and retirement data for 2023, demonstrating continued high standards in greyhound welfare despite the challenges posed by the cost-of-living and homing crises.

Key Findings:

  1. Injury and Retirement Data: The data, independently audited, reveals consistent injury and retirement rates, reflecting the significant progress in welfare since the launch of the Greyhound Commitment in 2018.
  2. Impact of Homing Crisis: The current homing crisis has led to an increase in the number of greyhounds being retained by their owners or trainers. In 2023, 1,499 greyhounds remained with their owners or trainers after retirement, up from 715 in 2022. These greyhounds continue to receive regular welfare checks from Stipendiary Stewards and Regional Regulatory Vets.
  3. Welfare Initiatives: Initiatives like the Greyhound Retirement Scheme (GRS) have mitigated the impact of the homing crisis. Homing centers receive a £400 bond per greyhound, enabling them to accept more dogs. Since 2020, over £4.4 million has been paid to 101 approved homing centers, supporting over 11,000 greyhounds.
  4. Track Safety Improvements: Efforts to improve track safety have resulted in a slight decrease in the track injury rate to 1.16% and fewer severe injuries. The track fatality rate remains low at 0.03%, half of what it was three years ago.
  5. Reduction in Economic Euthanasia: Fewer greyhounds are being put to sleep for economic reasons, with the number dropping to six in 2023 from ten in 2022. GBGB aims to reduce this number to zero.
  6. Homing Suitability: The number of greyhounds put down due to being unsuitable for homing decreased to 49 in 2023, significantly lower than in 2018 and 2019. GBGB continues to focus on behavioral assessments to further reduce this figure.

Commitment to Welfare: Mark Bird, GBGB Chief Executive, emphasized the importance of licensed racing in ensuring high welfare standards. He praised trainers and owners for their dedication to retired greyhounds, noting the positive impact of welfare initiatives on mitigating the effects of the homing crisis.

Jeremy Cooper, GBGB Chairman, highlighted the sport’s commitment to transparency and continuous improvement in welfare standards, despite external challenges.

The data underscores the ongoing efforts to provide the best care for greyhounds at every stage of their lives, reinforcing the importance of welfare initiatives and the dedication of those involved in the sport.



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