OPEN INVITATION: Blue Cross invited by Oxford Stadium to attend GBGB training centre less than two miles from its Burford headquarters

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Tomorrow marks one year since the Blue Cross partnered with the RSPCA and Dogs Trust to launch a joint campaign calling for an end to greyhound racing in the UK by September 2027.

To date, the campaign has been an abject failure.

It has lacked integrity, transparency and demonstrated extraordinary knowledge gaps regarding the sport’s present-day operation and the greyhound which is privileged to be the UK’s most accountable breed.

The Blue Cross’ behaviour in particular has been greatly concerning.

After failing to respond to our Open Letter penned in response to the launch of its campaign, the charity has ignored repeated calls to publish a ‘comprehensive internal review’ which it claims has evidence identifying welfare concerns at “every stage of a racing greyhound’s life”.

The Blue Cross has also resorted to photoshopping muzzles onto pictures of greyhounds for reasons we cannot fathom. Even more extraordinary, the Blue Cross has mistakenly used photographs of Spanish Galgos – a breed closely related to the greyhound – to accompany text which appears on its paid-for social media campaign against the sport.

A representation of muzzles being photoshopped onto greyhounds to paint a picture of grim reality by The Blue Cross.
The dog photographed on the right of this image is a Spanish Galgo, not a greyhound.

It is staggering a once respected, and still well-funded, major national charity cannot even identify the breed of which it is attempting to ban the primary purpose for its existence.

Furthermore, claims made by the Blue Cross that racing greyhounds are ‘transported in poor conditions’, ‘denied social contact’ and ‘forced to live in cramped kennels’ are not only entirely false, but also published with zero supporting evidence.

In addition, one of the Blue Cross’ key reasons behind its campaign to ban greyhound racing is the sport exposes greyhounds to risk of serious injury or death when they participate. It is critical the Blue Cross recognises injury – fatal and non-fatal – to animals is not and never will be exclusive to greyhound racing.

It applies to all other animal-based sports including horse racing, lure coursing, whippet racing, dog agility, polo, canicross and flyball. If the Blue Cross is to be consistent with its argument, the aforementioned sports will be targeted next.

For context, the very latest independently verified UK greyhound racing injury, fatality and rehoming data can be viewed here.

At Oxford Stadium, we’ve heard enough.

Ten months after first doing so, we’re again demanding the Blue Cross to release evidence behind its extraordinary claims made against greyhound racing.

We’re also demanding the charity’s team to make the two-mile journey from its headquarters in Burford to visit Oxford Stadium and English Greyhound Derby winning trainer Kevin Hutton’s kennels.

We are happy to accommodate the Blue Cross at Mr Hutton’s kennels on any day at any time – greyhound trainers attached to Oxford Stadium work seven days a week and are accountable to their dogs 24/7.

Doing so would enable the Blue Cross to clearly identify to us where their welfare concerns sit within a GBGB licensed facility.

We do not anticipate a reply, nor do we anticipate the Blue Cross to release evidence behind one of its claims made against our great sport. If the Blue Cross really does hold compelling evidence, we remain puzzled why the charity is so determined not to release it in the public domain.

What we do know is the one-year anniversary represents the perfect opportunity to answer our calls, so it’s time to do the right thing.

On behalf of everyone connected to Oxford Stadium.


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