Frequently Ask Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions and answers:
A: No. In fact there has been a shortage of greyhounds since regulations were put in place in 2015 to reduce the number of dogs being bred. By law no greyhound that is fit or healthy can be put down. Greyhounds who don’t race become family pets like other dogs. If the dog has been bred to race but isn’t at a racing standard when it gets to racing age, it will be adopted or rehomed as per laws that took place in 2015.
A: No. There is no difference and any suggestion to the contrary is false. Greyhounds live full lives whether they race or not.
A: The racing span of a greyhound is 18 months to four and a half years. After four years there are no rules to say the dog is unable to race. They are just not as fit as the younger dogs (like race horses who get older). After the dog’s racing career has finished the dog is then rehomed or adopted.
A: Those who oppose greyhound racing will quote what seem like high figures out of context in order to mislead, because these groups are about sensationalism not facts. Of course sometimes a dog is injured while racing; this is an unfortunate aspect of all sports including human sports. In perspective, there are over 30,000 greyhound starts every month across Australia, and in interests of transparency the total number of injuries are published. However almost all of these are extremely minor. Greyhound racing places so much importance on animal welfare that even a bruise or sore toe, means the dog is usually stood down from racing for a period, and this is recorded as an “injury”.
Furthermore, the number of greyhound injuries are far less than the injuries and deaths of other dogs across Australia through accidents, sickness, injury and mistreatment. Australia’s roads are a far more dangerous place for our dogs than a state-of the-art racetrack built for safety.
A: The industry is self-funded. Governments will contribute to buildings, infrastructure and other necessities like it does to any other sports but even this has become increasingly rare in the last few years.
A: Drugs in racing are illegal. Drug testing facilities are very strict and if there is ever a positive drug test it will be dealt with according to law.
A: There are minimum sizes by law that a dog can live in and it is illegal to keep a dog in a smaller area than the law states. The trainers know that if the dog is confined to a space that is too small it will not be happy and healthy and therefore will not race to the best of its ability. Many greyhounds live inside the house with their owner like any other domestic pet.
A: No but you can adopt or rehome a dog. Greyhounds don’t need “rescuing” because they live happy and healthy lives while racing. However, each state has rehoming programs funded by the clubs, for dogs when the owners don’t have the ability to keep them after they finish racing (mainly because some owners have several other dogs). Greyhounds make wonderful pets and owners can choose and approve the new home and family.
To adopt a greyhound please see the rehoming page on this website.
A: Unlike other domestic dog breeds who are often euthanased when they incur a serious injury and the owner cannot afford the medical expenses, when a Greyhound is injured and cannot race again, there is funding available through the ‘track injury rebate scheme’ which pays between $1500 and $6000 – and in some cases higher – to ensure the dog receives the highest quality medical treatment and is rehomed to a loving family. This includes very serious injuries. Only in the rare and unfortunate circumstance that an injury is classed as catastrophic is a dog euthanased. Greyhounds are more protected than other domestic dogs and pets.
A: Absolutely. More dogs of other breeds are injured (and tragically killed) on Australian roads and by other means. Greyhound clubs and associations ensure tracks are the safest they can be and over the past five years considerable and ongoing investment into track rebuilds and improvements has been carried out across Australia. In the broader context of animal safety, every greyhound is checked by a vet before and after a race, and the vet is on the track for every race. Stewards monitor each race and there are a myriad of safety and welfare precautions.
A: This website gives you the facts, but it’s also important to think about this. A happy, healthy dog performs better on the track and brings better results. Greyhound owners and trainers are in this sport for their love and affection for dogs, but it’s also in their interests to make animal welfare a priority.
A: Dogs can’t be granted a passport and therefore exported to any countries that have poor animal welfare. Greyhounds Australasia have guidelines that ensure Australasian greyhounds can only be exported to countries that have a standard of care and accountability comparable to that here in Australia.