Greyhounds die during transport

Dogs are hauled long distance to commercial racetracks.

After leaving the breeding farm, young greyhounds are trained to compete and by the age of eighteen months, the most promising dogs are packed into trucks and trailers and sent to perform at commercial racetracks all around the world. Greyhounds are moved from track to track and sometimes country to country, to race. The dogs are placed in small compartments called “holes” and trucked over large distances with little food or water. Greyhound “hauls” are largely unregulated and problems that occur are rarely reported to authorities.

  • On May 26, 2017, the hottest day of that year to date, nine greyhounds were transported in a makeshift van with no air conditioning or water for four hours from Wisbech, Norfolk to Crayford Stadium. The Greyhound Racing Board of Great Britain determined "serious welfare breaches" just short of "wilful cruelty" by trainer Jim Daly and his two kennel hands. A greyhound named Kelva Captin collapsed from the heat and lack of air conditioning and water. He was unable to even lift his head and his temperature had reached 108.2 °F. Malteser Man was found "unsteady" when removed from the van, with a temperature of 107 °F, a level sufficient to cause brain damage.

  • On August 26, 2016, a greyhound hauler driving in Brooke County, West Virginia, lost control of his vehicle and drove off the road, causing multiple dogs to be ejected. The status of these dogs is unknown.

  • On June 27, 2014, a greyhound named Gone Gone Gone died while being transferred from West Virginia to Palm Beach Kennel Club in Florida to race.

  • In 2010, two greyhound haulers were suspended for 30 days and fined $500 each after eight greyhounds died while being transported to Arizona. At least some of the dogs were being sent to race at Tucson Greyhound Park. The haulers claimed that they were unable to check on the dogs for part of the trip due to bad weather, but a state report of the incident found that "the evidence does not support that they drove through severe rainstorms."

  • In August 2008, three greyhounds died while being transported from Iowa to the Palm Beach Kennel Club in Florida. The dogs apparently died of heat-related illness.

Transportation of greyhounds around the world

A dog whimpers in a hauler truck in New Zealand A greyhound whimpers in a hauler truck in New Zealand. (GREY2K USA Worldwide)

Greyhound hauling abuse has always been a concern, and now the public's attention is also focused on an export crisis. This refers to the practice of bringing greyhounds from jurisdictions that have some animal welfare laws, namely Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, the United States and the United Kingdom, to jurisdictions with little or no humane protections at all. ABC News shined a light on the practice in December 2015, concluding that greyhounds sent to such places had no way out and would certainly die while racing or be killed when no longer profitable. The export issue has been scrutinized legislatively and in the media ever since:

  • In September 2023, ABC Investigations uncovered a supply chain involving Australian agents procuring top greyhounds for Chinese breeders. Several Aussie greyhounds were sent to third-party countries before ending up in China for illegal racing.

  • In August 2023, Greyhounds Australasia announced a good but an unenforceable rule against the export of greyhounds to countries other than New Zealand, Great Britain, Ireland, or the United States.

  • In September 2021, Australian Senator Mehreen Faruqi introduced a bill to statutorily prohibit the import and export of greyhounds for breeding, racing, or commercial use.

  • In May 2019, Tommy Broughan TD and others sought to add amendments to Ireland's Greyhound Racing Bill 2018 that were designed to require reporting on the disposition of greyhounds and for the creation of a "white list" of acceptable countries for export. These amendments were defeated.

  • In April 2019, The Des Moines Register reported on Iowa greyhounds sold off to China by the state's top greyhound breeders. This development prompted both the Iowa Greyhound Association and National Greyhound Association to ban the sale or export of NGA registered greyhounds to any country that does not have recognized welfare standards. The breeders claimed they were both duped by the same buyer, although the buyer was known as a middleman for Chinese exports.

  • In June 2017, four Australian greyhound participants Mark Farrugia, Steven Cauchi, and Patricia Cauchi were found guilty of 464 charges under industry rules for the unauthorized export of hundreds of greyhounds to China, Vietnam, and Dubai.

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Florida greyhound puppies behind a fence

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