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Greyhound welfare: evidence published and first hearing announced

24 November 2015

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee's sub-committee on greyhound welfare has published written evidence ahead of its first hearing with animal welfare charities on Tuesday 24 November 2015.


Tuesday 24 November, Committee Room 15, Palace of Westminster

 At 2.15pm

  • Clarissa Baldwin, Chief Executive Officer, Greyhound Forum
  • Dr Toni Shephard, Head of Policy and Research, League Against Cruel Sports
  • Professor Steven Dean, Chairman, Retired Greyhound Trust
  • Emily Burns-Sweeney, Director of Homing, Kennelling and Welfare, Greyhound Rescue West of England

At 3.15pm

  • Michael Watts, Secretary, Society of Greyhound Veterinarians
  • Dr Simon Adams, Chairman, Association of Greyhound Track Veterinarians
  • Dr Hazel Bentall, Vet

Chair's comments

Chair of the Committee, Neil Parish said,

"We have received an overwhelming response to this call for evidence. Greyhound welfare is something people clearly feel passionate about. Greyhound racing is one of Britain's most popular sports and we need to ensure that the with all the money going in, enough is spent protecting the welfare of the animals at all stages of their careers.

We will be asking whether current regulations go far enough and making sure that that Defra has all the information available when carrying out its review."

Written evidence

Animal welfare charities including the Dogs Trust, the RSPCA, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, and the Greyhound Forum have provided written evidence.  Among questions raised are:

  • whether the Welfare of Racing Greyhound Regulations introduced in 2010 adequately protect greyhound welfare
  • what happens to retired and injured dogs, and those that are bred for racing but not considered good enough to race
  • whether the regulations should cover breeding, kennelling and retirement as well as racing itself

The Committee also received evidence from retired greyhound owners and those working in the industry who are concerned that unless the welfare of greyhounds is paramount within the industry it will not continue to be a viable sport.

Further information

Image: iStockphoto