Have you ever been to a greyhound race? It can be extremely exciting.
You get to watch all these light, super fast dogs chasing a rabbit around a track.
People bet on the result and even enjoy alcoholic beverages while the races are going. Also, like any gambling sport, it can be quite addictive.
In some states dog races are legal but in others, they are not. Ironically, in states like Alabama, casino gambling is illegal unless you are in an Indian reservation. However, in Alabama, dog races are perfectly legal.
This activity increases the revenue of whatever city it is going on and that is a very good reason why some laws allow it. It creates jobs and brings in taxes from the licensing and sales. It gives people in small towns something to do and someplace to go after the sidewalks roll up.
What about the animals though? The rabbit is always fine, no need to worry yourself about that. It is mechanical and it never gets caught. But, what about the dogs?
These dogs are bred with only one purpose in their lives. They are not bred to be pets. They are bred to run around a track in circles chasing a mechanical rabbit[rabbit care].
They are trained for this from the time they can leave their mother’s side. They know no other life and sometimes they are even given performance enhancing drugs (though in defense of the racing, this is illegal).
The states that have legalized racing are declining in number. What happens to the dogs when a state decides to ban the racing? Their owners have no use of them anymore. They can’t make money from racing them and are not ok with spending money to keep them.
A lot of owners and tracks will unfortunately just abandon these dogs. They are left to provide for themselves or taken to a shelter where they are put to death if someone does not come and rescue them.
The lucky ones are kept by the original owners. The others will hopefully be adopted and taken to a good home. However, with the amount of states banning the sport and race tracks closing, finding homes for all the dogs is not likely to happen.
In 2009, nine tracks closed, leaving hundreds of dogs homeless and without a purpose. There are too many dogs for the shelters to handle and most of these dogs will more than likely meet an untimely demise because of it.
There are however a few happy endings. There are some dogs that do find happy families and good homes to live in. The dogs will not be used for sport and made to run in circles all day long, but instead will become happy and healthy house dogs that will bring joy to whatever family or person that adopts them.
Hopefully, whatever family or person adopts them will bring as much joy and peace to the dog as the dog does to them. If so, this will be a mutually beneficial relationship and the dog will grow old and die of natural causes instead of being killed because nobody wanted it.