Following criticism and much discussion Greyhound Racing Victoria (GRV) has clarified its position on greyhound racing in extreme heat conditions and announced the development of a Heat Policy that will more than likely see Victoria fall in to line with Heat Policies in New South Wales and South Australia.
In the past, GRV has been of the view that trainers could be relied upon to make the best decisions regarding the welfare of their greyhounds and their suitability to race, especially during hot weather. Since 2006, the GRV Hot Weather Policy has been in place, allowing trainers to scratch their greyhounds without penalty on days where hot weather is predicted.
This Hot Weather Policy was developed after consultation with Greyhound Veterinarians, along with other industry stakeholders.
The weather we have faced in the last two weeks throughout Victoria has been not only unusual, but also extreme.
In light of this, GRV has decided that under such extreme conditions, it may no longer be adequate to rely on the discretion of trainers, and that a further ‘Extreme Heat Policy’ needs to be developed to provide both consistency, and also to ensure the welfare of the racing greyhounds is not compromised.
Discussions are already well underway in regards to the development of this policy with input from the Racing, Integrity & Infrastructure Department, Australian Greyhound Veterinarian’s Association, and GRV’s own Animal Welfare Officer.
It is anticipated that further consultation with the RSPCA will also occur.
It is hoped that a draft policy will be developed by Friday February 13th, 2009, and once finalised will be advertised to the industry via Australian Racing Greyhound, the own GRV’s website and the March Adviser.