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Author Topic: Massachusetts bans greyhound dog racing!  (Read 2784 times)
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Posts: 1576

« on: November 05, 2008, 05:12:55 AM »

This has been a long time coming it was narrowly defeated in 2000.

Related To Story

Steve Pope/Getty Images

Ballot Questions

Dog Racing Ban Approved
Race Tracks To Close By January 2010

POSTED: 10:15 pm EST November 4, 2008
UPDATED: 11:33 pm EST November 4, 2008

BOSTON -- Massachusetts voters reversed course Tuesday and approved a ban on greyhound racing in the state, eight years after they narrowly defeated a similar ballot question.

The measure will force the state's two greyhound tracks to end dog racing by Jan. 1, 2010.

Supporters argued that greyhound racing is inhumane and that greyhounds are routinely injured during races, including broken legs, paralysis and even death from cardiac arrest.

They also said the dogs were kept in small cages for up to 20 hours a day -- something the track owners denied.

"This is the year of the greyhound. This is a victory for everyone in the commonwealth who cares about dogs," said Christine Dorchak of the Committee to Protect Dogs, which led the campaign in favor of the question.

"Voters looked at the facts. They made a judgment based on the tracks' own information and decided we in Massachusetts could no longer tolerate an industry that causes thousands of dogs to suffer every day," Dorchak added.

The state's dog tracks had fought against the measure, saying their greyhounds are looked after by veterinarians. They also pointed to their efforts to ensure greyhounds are adopted once their racing days are over.

The track owners also said eliminating racing will take a financial toll on the state and force track employees to look for work in an uncertain economy.

"I feel so sorry for these over 1,000 people who are going to be losing their jobs in an economy that can't see another 1,000 people unemployed," said Gary Temple, general manager Raynham Greyhound Park in Raynham. "They all have families."

Temple said he was holding out hope the track could remain open even without dog racing. The state's race tracks have pushed lawmakers unsuccessfully for years to allow them to add slot machines.

Carter Luke, president of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, also praised the win, and said the group and other backers of the question were committed to working with lawmakers to find a "soft landing" for both the dogs and the workers.

Dorchak said her group has enlisted nearly 100 veterinarians and has animal hospitals and major animal shelters standing by to help deal with the greyhounds as they transition out of racing.

She said passage of the question will mark the end of 75 years of dog racing in Massachusetts.

Greyhound racing nationwide has faced tough times as its one-time legions of blue-collar fans have been lured away by casinos, lotteries, online gambling and other forms of betting.

In the 1980s there were more than 50,000 greyhounds bred each year to race at about 60 tracks nationwide. This year, the number of dogs will drop to under 20,000 and the number of tracks has been cut almost in half.

Since the end of 2004 alone, 13 U.S. tracks have closed or ended live dog racing, according to Dorchak's group.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Full Member
Posts: 90

« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2008, 09:21:08 AM »

I'm so glad this finally happened, now we just need to get it banned here in NH.
Hero Member
Posts: 1458

« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2008, 09:40:19 AM »

Yeah Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin

The Greatness Of A Nation And It's Moral Progress Can Be Judged By The Way It's Animals Are Treated-Gandhi
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Posts: 6749

« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2008, 01:11:47 PM »

Glad to see this happen! Thanks for posting, Ranger.
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Posts: 1576

« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2008, 01:37:32 PM »

I was so excited that it passed this time.  In 2000 so many animal organizations worked so hard and it was soo close.  In 2006 they kept it off the ballot by some technicality and this year everyone really ramped it up.  Almost every conversation I have had in the last month ended with don't forget to vote yes on 3, please vote for the dogs. Grin Grin Grin
Hero Member
Posts: 2260

« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2008, 01:38:32 PM »

That's great news, now if only they can do the same for horse racing.
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