State News
6:10 pm
Mon February 4, 2013

Greyhound Advocates: Remove Dog Racing Requirement From Fla. Law

Advocates for the humane treatment of greyhounds are asking Florida lawmakers once again to remove a state law tying dog racing to gambling licenses. They say the measure should help phase out a pastime that’s already dwindling in popularity.

Current state law requires dog tracks to maintain a steady racing schedule in order to keep their gaming licenses, and then they can offer games like poker.

But on Monday, Cary Theil, executive director of advocacy group Grey2k USA, asked the Senate Committee on Gaming to remove, or “decouple,” the dog-racing requirement.

"It’s my belief that, as the dog-racing industry further contracts and, if you allow decoupling, then you would see gambling on live greyhound racing decline further," he said.

Theil said, he also wants dog tracks to be required to report greyhound injuries to the state. He said, data from states that do require reporting show that dogs are frequently euthanized after being seriously injured. The most common type of injury, he said, is broken legs from falling during races.