Hello Mr. Quiggly,
Let’s talk about a place we’ve both been: Tucson Greyhound Park (TGP). You were there filming a Super Bowl commercial for Skechers, I lived there most of my life.
I’m one of those tall, thin dogs – a greyhound -- like the ones you “race” against in the commercial. You can call me “Hope.” It isn’t the name I was known by at the track because, yes, things were bad, and I don’t want them to bring me back there.
I hear that your “race” at Tucson Greyhound Park is supposed to be amusing. I raced more than 130 times at TGP, and I have a hard time finding humor in a single one of them. I just couldn’t do it anymore, the running, pounding, colliding. I had to race when it was over 100 degrees outside, sometimes hotter. But, I was one of the lucky ones. I survived. I didn’t break my leg or shoulder or back like some greyhounds do.
You probably didn’t get a tour while you were there, so let’s clear up one thing: Tucson Greyhound Park isn’t really a park.
I had to live in a “kennel compound” behind the track. Dozens of other dogs were there, too, but we couldn’t get to know each other because we were all in our own small cages. We had to lie down on carpet scraps or shredded paper, and no one ever gave us toys to play with.
A couple times a day, they let me relieve myself inside a small pen -- but many times, I just had to soil my cage because they took so long to come.
And the rotten food we were fed smelled funny but I was so hungry I ate it.
If we met now, you probably wouldn’t think we had very different lives. I found a loving home with other greyhounds and wonderful people who adopted me. We have soft beds, nutritious food, and receive unlimited love and tenderness. Soon I will be 4 years old.
But even though I get the star treatment from my family now, I still have health problems.
At the track, female greyhounds like me are regularly injected with steroids to make sure we don’t go into heat. You see, it is about the money. When females are in heat, we cannot race. If we cannot race, we do not make money for the people who own us or operate the kennel or the track.
This is kind of embarrassing, but the steroids cause genital abnormalities, and I suffer urinary infections and may need surgery.
You and I may both be loved pets now, but this is nothing like the life you’ve had, eh, Quiggles? May I call you Quiggles? Please listen to the many petitioners pleading for you to tell Skechers that greyhound racing isn't funny.