The population of Florida has voted overwhelmingly this week to ban Greyhound racing from the state once and for all. The vote on Amendment 13 will see the sport completely ended statewide in Florida by December 31, 2020.
Over 69% of voters agreed with banning the ‘past time’ of watching the athletic dogs chase motorized rabbits around a racetrack at speeds of up to 45 mph. The outcome of the vote clearly shows that the majority of residents of the state are more than ready to move on from allowing this controversial sport.
Greyhound Racing Ban in Florida and the US!
Animal rights groups, such as Grey2K and the ASPCA, have been lobbying for the passing of the amendment and an end to the sport of Greyhound racing in the United States and worldwide since 2001. So far, Greyhound racing has been made illegal in 41 U.S. states, with Florida being the most recent victory for the groups.
The Greyhound racing industry has been under scrutiny for many years, with accusations of maltreatment, abuse, and death both on and off the racetrack. Most of the concerning issues for animal rights groups like Grey2K are the practices which are industry standard for Greyhound racing. The Greyhound racing ban in Florida is a great cause to celebrate for many Animal Welfare organizations!
Animal Welfare organizations say that racing Greyhounds are confined for up to 23 hours a day in small cages when not training or racing. They also claim that using drugs to enhance performance is standard practice in the sport, which can adversely affect the dogs.
Even more seriously, it is common knowledge that many Greyhound injuries and even deaths occur daily, as an accepted part of racing. A shocking 2015 report from the ASPCA and Grey2K recorded that more than 11,000 injuries and 900 Greyhound deaths nationwide occurred between 2008 and 2015.
Retired Greyhounds Needing New Homes!
The passing of the amendment means that 11 of 17 remaining Greyhound racing tracks will be closed by the end of 2020. This also means that dogs retired from racing will need new homes. According to Joyce Carta, Vice President of Greyhound Adoptions of Florida, there are around 3,700 active racing dogs in Florida right now.
This doesn’t take into account the other dogs associated with the industry – dogs in training, puppies and brood mums. It’s estimated that the true number of dogs needing new homes could exceed 7,000, although it’s possible that some of this number could be sent off to remaining states where racing is still legal.
Potential adopters of Greyhounds are advised that the way in which the dogs will be allocated to adoption groups is not clear yet. The process is also being made an even more complex by the National Greyhound Association, due to their refusal to work with any adoption agencies that supported the racing ban.
The National Greyhound Association argues that racing is not bad for the dogs. Anyone interested in adopting a Greyhound in Florida should reach out to their local rescue groups for further information on when the dogs will be available and the step to take to adopt.
Greyhounds Make Amazing ESAs! How CertaPet Can Help You Get an ESA Letter for Your Little Hound!
The Greyhound breed is not only known for its speed. These doggos are incredibly sweet and sensitive and will make fantastic emotional support dogs. If you are thinking about adopting a retired Greyhound, and bumping them up to ESA status, let us help!
All you need to do is take CertaPet’s free online 5-minute pre-screening to see whether you qualify for an ESA. If your answers indicate that you do, we will connect you with a licensed mental health professional (LMHP) in your state! You could have your ESA letter in as little as 48 hrs!