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Parliamentary enquiry into Greyhound welfare

Eric Martlew MP, pictured with greyhounds Benny and Sonny,
who are looking for new homes

FOLLOWING SERIOUS concerns about the welfare of British racing Greyhounds earlier this year, an official Parliamentary Enquiry has been set up to investigate the matter.

Last week, Eric Martlew MP, chairman of the Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare (APGAW) announced the membership of the parliamentary enquiry. Mr Martlew, MP for Carlisle and Chair of the Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare (APGAW), gathered the members of the enquiry together at Westminster to meet some ex-racing greyhounds currently at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home.

The Associate Parliamentary Group for Animal Welfare is a cross-party parliamentary group of over 80 MPs and Peers and over 70 associate animal welfare organisations, which aims to further the cause of animal welfare by all means available to the Parliaments at Westminster and in Europe.

Mr. Martlew said: ‘We decided the time was ripe for a parliamentary enquiry following high profile allegations in the Sunday Times regarding healthy Greyhounds being shot at the end of their racing career. I’m delighted that there are so many senior members of both houses sitting on the enquiry.

We will investigate the many issues that affect the welfare of racing greyhounds and, with the co-operation of both the racing industry and welfare groups, we hope to make useful recommendations that will improve the welfare of Greyhounds at all stages of their lives’

The enquiry is chaired by Eric Martlew MP and the members of the enquiry are: Alan Meale MP; Andrew Rosindell MP; Baroness Golding; Harry Cohen MP; Lord Beaumont of Whitley; Lord Bradley; Lord Hoyle; Nick Palmer MP; Russell Brown MP; Theresa Villiers MP.

As reported previously by OUR DOGS, the issue came to the fore in July when the issue was raised as an emergency item at a meeting of the APGAW held at the House of Commons, following revelations in the Sunday Times newspaper how David Smith from County Durham was ‘disposing’ of unwanted Greyhounds for trainers and owners.

DEFRA Animal Welfare Minister Ben Bradshaw was ‘appalled’ by the report and said he was taking the matter ‘very seriously’. The Minister subsequently ordered the inquiry into the whole matter, which may result in prosecutions of individuals involved in the ‘disposal’ of unwanted Greyhounds.

If you are interested in offering Benny or Sonny a home please call 020 7627 9234 or log onto