Industry can emerge stronger and better from latest scandal

BY NATURE, greyhounds are predators. It’s their instinct to chase, catch and kill.

This natural tendency was widely put to use in Australia starting in the 1860s and continuing until live coursing was made illegal in 1985.

Since then, it appears the authorities have turned a blind eye to the fact some trainers within the sport still use live baiting as a method of training their greyhounds to chase the lure.

The live-baiting issue has burst back into the spotlight during the past week. Five properties were raided last week by the RSPCA in conjunction with the police in Queensland, Victoria and New South Wales after Four Corners, which was working with Animals Australia and the Animal Liberation Queensland, presented the results of an investigation into greyhound racing to the state-based RSPCAs.

The raids have resulted in 23 people being stood down immediately, with desperate calls from the RSPCA and animal welfare groups to put an end to the sport. To make matters even worse, the industry’s darkest secret is set to be exposed on a gritty episode of the ABC’s Four Corners program titled “Making A Killing”.

The question that needs to be asked is how can the respective greyhound racing authorities have stood back for so long and let it continue? Surely they would have known the live-baiting problem still existed. Now it has been neglected for so long the RSPCA has dragged the industry’s skeletons out of the closet and into the spotlight for mainstream media and a horrified public audience to gawk at.

It is not good enough.

There is no denying it is a serious issue and GRNSW alone invested $1.3 million into welfare during the 2014 financial year – so shouldn’t this have been something that was investigated heavily?

How can authority bodies that are meant to be devoted to integrity and welfare be upstaged by outsider groups that have invested far less time and money before finding a much bigger problem?

Australian Racing Greyhound attempted to contact CEOs Brent Hogan (GRNSW) and Adam Wallish (GRV), to ask why proactive action had not been taken prior to the RSPCA and ABC jumping on board, but they were not willing to make additional comments relating to our questions.

Participants have the right to be angry. Not everyone does the wrong thing, but now everyone will be tarred with the same brush as headlines emerge left, right and centre that are essentially accusing the whole industry of being guilty of the actions of a few.

If the problem had been properly handled by the authorities earlier, surely it would not have spiralled out of control and into the public eye like it has.

One trainer expressed to me that live-baiting was comparable to drink-driving – even though some do it, they know it is wrong. If you get caught, bad luck, you deserve to be kicked out of the game.

People know they shouldn’t do it and so they deserve to get caught, but it shouldn’t have had to reach the stage where they are sprung by anti-racing groups. We have authority bodies for a reason, isn’t it time they started taking control of the sport they are supposed to manage? And shouldn’t they have been doing it without the pressure from the RSPCA and animal rights groups?

No matter what your view is on live baiting, I think we can all agree it would have been far better for the investigations to be handled ‘in-house’ by our authorities rather than having their hands forced and the industry’s image severely tarnished by groups whose main objective is to end greyhound racing.

Additionally, in a somewhat confusing turn of events, some tracks in New South Wales have also suspended finish-on trials. So now the perfectly humane and legal way to encourage dogs to chase has been taken away from trainers. Talk about mixed messages.

I love this industry and I want it to thrive, but it is naive to carry on thinking no one is doing the wrong thing. The authority bodies need to realise this and so do participants.

Although there may be tough times ahead, and it is certainly not something that I would ever like to see my cherished sport go through, perhaps this is the ammunition needed to incite the changes the industry so clearly needs to move forward to a bigger and brighter future.

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Toby Andrew
Toby Andrew
6 years ago

Jewie Jam very horny boy kellie…he will catch you!!

Danny Reid
Danny Reid
6 years ago

Mitchell Backman how horny is Jewie Jam

Toby Andrew
Toby Andrew
6 years ago

Thoughts William Hetherington

Mitchell Backman
Mitchell Backman
6 years ago

Jewie need sum moreEnglish lessens

Danny Reid
Danny Reid
6 years ago

2 rite

Andy Mac
Andy Mac
6 years ago

Every sport has its scumbags …mandatory repayment the earnings and life ban/jail time is the only option, I love the dogs fact is it can be done without all the bullshit people are still feeding peds to horses as well.Scum needs to be cleaned top to bottom. Im sure there are dedicated clean trainers In the sport and they are the ones who should be at the top. Don’t paint everyone with the same brush and talk like you know everything because of a current affair program we all know they go for headlines and this sure was a massive… Read more »

Kellie Inglis
Kellie Inglis
6 years ago

Oh, Jewie….what’s the difference between using a worm to using animals such as possums, rabbits and piglets? Is this a serious question?

Loz Kearns
Loz Kearns
6 years ago

By selective breeding? They were in the bible….only breed to be mentioned actuallyBut I get what you’re saying, they are truly amazing pets who just prefer to take over your lounge and not rip a piglet in half Money talks

Kellie Inglis
Kellie Inglis
6 years ago

Mind you, I personally wouldn’t use live bait for anything – recreational or otherwise. However surely you understand the difference. You are just winding me up with your previous comment? I assumed you were just an obnoxious pot-stirrer trying to rile up those who were against live baiting practices and consequently greyhound racing because you don’t participate in illegal and unethical acts against animals. I didn’t think you would actually condone live baiting or seriously justify it….

Roman Flachs
Roman Flachs
6 years ago

You are an Idiot Al Barnes….Perhaps your corrupt as the rest of them ya loser

Roman Flachs
Roman Flachs
6 years ago

Here’s an idea. Every trainers race track should have camera’s installed and should be recording 24/7 with the public been able to view at anytime….. That might stop some of you cruel corrupt pricks… and sack the lot of your regulation officers….. obviously they were sitting on there fat arses getting paid to do sweet FA. Like I said why didn’t they set up some camera’s and take action???

Roman Flachs
Roman Flachs
6 years ago

Shutup Mark Riley…. Perhaps read and not reply ya stooge

Roman Flachs
Roman Flachs
6 years ago

Gee Sarge Man, your sure your not one of the regulation officers……….

Mark Riley
Mark Riley
6 years ago

Oh the hatred from people because i own a greyhound

Mel Norman
Mel Norman
6 years ago

greyhound people are seriously just not seeing the same thing as everyone else saw on the TV screen on Monday night- pure unadulterated evil is, yes, likely to result in strong responses to people who simply do not accept that is normal on any level – let alone systematically in the course of the daily business of an industry – it’s is honestly like they are just not seeing what the rest fo the world not indoctrinated by the value of money over suffering saw. Denial. It’s only the first stage. Punishment will be next and it will be on… Read more »

Mel Norman
Mel Norman
6 years ago

Yes. Yes it is.

Kellie Inglis
Kellie Inglis
6 years ago

And the fact that you think dogs will be put to death if this industry stops makes me question the type of people even further that currently own greyhounds.

Mark Riley
Mark Riley
6 years ago

Where have i mentioned anything about hatred ..a i stated is that most makeup id

Mark Riley
Mark Riley
6 years ago

Is used on animals ..the hatred is coming from all your comments ..

Kellie Inglis
Kellie Inglis
6 years ago

So that’s what you’ve learnt? That it’s ok to tie an animal to a rod and watch it being mauled to death if it means that you might with some money? Gosh Justin, you had a rough childhood! Also, I’ve spent time in schools quite recently and I can assure you that the children of today do not aspire to be cheats.

Kellie Inglis
Kellie Inglis
6 years ago

‘Oh the hatred from people because I own a greyhound’. A quote on this thread from you.

Andrea McManus
Andrea McManus
6 years ago

industry has to go…emerge stronger??!!…NO WAY

Victoria
Victoria
6 years ago

Greyhound racing is nothing more than an excuse for animal cruelty for gambling. The whole industry is corrupt and Australia is only one of five countries in the world that participate in this blood “sport”. What do all of the other countries know that we don’t?

Why don’t people who want to gamble do so in other ways that doesn’t involve animal suffering? 

Now that the public knows what is happening, the industry is going down. I suggest everyone who is trying to make a buck off of the dogs go out and get a real job.

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