The greyhound racing industry in the Republic of Ireland is regulated and promoted by the commercial semi-state body the Irish Greyhound Board (IGB). There are currently 16 IGB licensed greyhound racing tracks in the country. As of the end of 2015, there were 3,351 greyhounds in the pool of racing dogs.1
In the Republic of Ireland the greyhound racing industry receives government funding through the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund. Between 2001 through 2019 more than €250 million will have been paid out to the IGB from this Fund.2
The majority of greyhounds racing in Ireland are bred in the country. In 2019, there were 2,324 litters registered in the Irish Greyhound Stud Book, a decrease of 23% since 2010.3
The IGB has Racing Regulations that include rules for betting and prize money, doping policies and requirements for racing officials.4 Additionally, the Irish government passed the Welfare of Greyhounds Act in 2011 that sets standards for certain greyhound breeding operations and general welfare requirements for housing, transport and record keeping.5
From 2015 through 2020, 2,146 greyhounds suffered injuries and 715 greyhounds were killed at Irish tracks.6
Wagering on greyhound racing is legal in Ireland. In 2019 the turnover, or amount bet by gamblers, at the IGB licensed tracks was €23 million.7 Since 2010, the turnover has declined by 30%.8
On June 26, 2019, RTÉ News aired a program entitled RTÉ Investigates: Greyhounds Running For Their Lives. The investigation revealed that nearly 6,000 Irish greyhounds are killed each year.9 In addition, according to an IGB-commissioned report that was completed in 2017, the Irish greyhound industry breeds 1,000% more puppies than it needs to conduct racing.10 The program also highlighted the merciless killing of unwanted greyhounds at Irish knackeries or slaughterhouses, drugging dogs to fix races, track injuries and deaths.11
Rewarding Cruelty: Greyhound Racing in Ireland
Learn about the cruelty and corruption of dog racing in the Emerald Isle in our groundbreaking report.
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RTE Investigates: Greyhounds Running for Their Lives