GA Welfare Working Party
The success of any industry is driven and achieved by ensuring that the underpinning structure can support it. As with any supporting structure from time to time improvements are identified and implemented.
GA’s Welfare Working Party has been given responsibility for implementing the National Greyhound Welfare Strategy. It is expected that the strategy will be fully implemented by May 2017.
The strategy seeks to reform the industry’s management of greyhound welfare by:
- Having all greyhounds under the care of a registered participant at all times during their lifecycle unless retired as a pet
- Introducing a national approach to breeding to further reduce the number of unsuitable greyhounds being bred, and to ensure the decision to breed a litter of greyhounds is a considered one
- Maximising opportunities for all greyhounds to reach their full potential
- Maximising racing opportunities for all greyhounds
- Optimising end of career alternative
- Introducing a national approach to education
- Extending the registration and licencing of participants to all people that care for greyhounds at every stage of their lifecycle
- Improving inspection and compliance mechanisms
Early successes include the introduction of new greyhound vaccination requirements and restrictions on the use of breeding females which we expect will help ensure all decisions to breed are properly considered ones. Ensuring breeding females do not breed more than three litters without controlling body and vet approval, and are not used for three successive seasons or after reaching eight years of age, again, without controlling body and vet approval are all initiatives directed at protecting the health of our breeding females.
The Working Party’s 2015 focus is on introducing registration and licencing of all persons involved in the care of a greyhound during its lifecycle including breeders, whelpers, rearers and breakers. Trainer and breeder licence categories programs have been developed and a national trainer education program is being rolled out.
Controlling body CEOs, together with GA, are currently reviewing the strategy to ensure more action is taken as soon as possible to dramatically reduce the number of greyhounds who are unnecessarily euthanased.