Greyhound racingI’ve been watching this controversial issue going on in Massachusetts for a while now. Those for and against greyhound racing have battled bitterly. Fighting for the ban, organizers spoke of high numbers of injuries and inhumane conditions. Fighting against the ban, organizers talked of lost jobs and lost revenue.

Now I have no problem with ‘working dogs.’ Dogs do great with jobs and many breeds have been bred and trained to do certain things. You have service dogs and companion dogs, therapy dogs and dogs that work on farms. Dogs that work in the military and for police forces and yes, some of these dogs get hurt and even killed.

Greyhound racing is different. These dogs, although they have been bred to run, tend to have a short ‘career’ span. After all, how long can any animal race their heart out day after day? When they’re not racing they tend to be stuck in cages with little contact. Injuries can be severe and quick to happen. And after their racing life, although there are many wonderful organizations out there, how can homes be found for the thousands of dogs. What about the dogs that don’t make the cut?

There are horror stories that abound in the greyhound racing world, the kind of stories that no one involved in the sport will talk about or even admit to.

This is the second try to get greyhound racing banned in Massachusetts and by 2010 it will be history. With two-thirds of the districts reporting in this morning, the vote to end this sport passed 56 to 44 percent.

Too many dogs die in the name of making a buck. If people need to gamble, there’s plenty of other things to gamble on. Yes, people are going to lose jobs and yes, the state is going to lose revenue but it’s not like this is going into effect tomorrow. There’s a year to plan and prepare. And for those people who can’t live without greyhound racing, there’s plenty of places where it will still be going on.

The dogs can’t speak for themselves for people who cared banded together and put every effort into speaking for them. In the end, their voice was heard and for a change, the dogs came in first!

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