In response to this morning’s calls from the RSPCA, Dogs Trust and Blue Cross for greyhound racing to banned, Kevin Boothby – Oxford Stadium MD – had released the following statement.
He said: “The UK is facing unprecedented animal welfare challenges with families already struggling to afford costs associated with the responsibility of owning a pet.
“The RSPCA revealed 38,087 abandonment reports were made to the charity’s cruelty line in 2021, and that figure is expected to rise significantly this year. It is sickening to read these statistics, and a heavy reminder that welfare, care and educational requirements for members of the public to take on the responsibility of owning an animal are shockingly low.
“The RSPCA, Dogs Trust and Blue Cross are well-placed to help decrease rates of animal suffering, neglect and abuse in the UK. Instead, they have chosen to bow to the agenda of a small number of animal rights extremists campaigning against greyhound racing who have been proven by Oxford Stadium to publish false, misleading and outdated information.
“All racing greyhounds are subject to outstanding levels of care 24-hours a day, seven days a week. They are cared for by knowledgeable trainers, kennel hands and veterinary surgeons who dedicate their lives to the sport and understand the requirements of the breed.
“When their racing careers end, a bond paid by the owner that is matched by the Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB) safeguards every dog’s future in retirement.
“Today, 9,997 out of every 10,000 greyhounds that race go home safe. And 94% of retired greyhounds are successfully rehomed. We have always held an open door at Oxford Stadium and will happily show members of the public our state-of-the-art facilities and educate people how greyhounds live at home and in retirement.
“To date, not one person has taken up this offer which we believe speaks for itself concerning the general public’s views on greyhound racing in its modern format.”