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Rescue rehomes over 400 greyhounds in 18 months

A WEST Midlands kennels for retired greyhounds which opened 18 months ago has already found homes for 416 dogs.

Retired GreyhoundsRuth Boswell, 37, gave up her job as a medical secretary to run Perry Barr Stadium's Retired Greyhound Trust.

She says she is allergic to most dogs and never wanted to own one, but she changed her mind when her husband took home a retired greyhound as a pet.

Rowington Working Men's Club, based in Lapworth, Warwickshire, hosted a Christmas walk for the charity. Mrs Boswell said it was among a number of fundraising events held for the kennels.
She became involved with retired greyhounds at the beginning of 2003, as a result of enjoying owning her pet Tara.

She said: ‘When I first saw her I felt sorry for her as she looked so glum, but when she came home I realised she was beautiful and so easy going.’

She added: ‘They are such calm and gentle creatures, they make perfect pets and that made me want to do even more for them.’

Perry Barr Retired Greyhound Trust (RGT) moved to Daybreaks Kennels in Solihull on 1 July 2006, after worries that it would have to fold, due a planning application problem.

The kennels, which houses about 16 dogs at a time, was called after Tara's racing name which was Daybreaks Beauty. Sadly Tara died early in 2007.

The charity, which has found homes for 278 dogs in 2007, accounts for 10% of all rehomed retired greyhounds in Britain, Mrs Boswell said.

The greyhounds retire from racing at about three or four years old, although some younger ones who are not considered good racers are also rehomed.

Mrs Boswell said despite being ex-racing dogs, the greyhounds were ‘low maintenance’ and needed short walks.

‘They love to race but they deserve a good retirement,’ she added. Nineteen dogs were rehomed in December 2007. The charity is supported by volunteers who visit homes around the West Midlands to make sure they are suitable for the dogs. Mrs Boswell said the greyhounds needed a secure garden and to live indoors ‘as part of the family’. Retired people were among volunteers who regularly came to the kennels to walk the dogs, she added.

‘I love my work and really feel like I am making a difference and not like I am wasting my life away which is how I felt in my other job,’ she said.