2-Year-Old Greyhound Dies by Electrocution During a Race

Tuesday, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported on two fatal greyhound injuries that occurred at Sarasota Kennel Club, including a dog that died after apparently being electrocuted. This coverage followed a state investigation that was launched in February, after GREY2K USA provided regulators with information from a confidential source.

Unfortunately, the state investigation confirmed that our informant was correct about the fate of Raiders Uncle Mo, who died on February 9. In what was apparently just his third official race, the 23 month old black dog was bumped by another greyhound, stumbled and “landed on the electrified lure tracks that are located under the guard rail.” According to a track veterinarian, Mo’s cause of death was listed as:

“Dog fell or was pushed within 20 yards of leaving box. Fell under rail. Death by electrocution, burns on jacket.”

Despite Mo’s death, business continued as usual at the track. According to the state report it was determined that “there was no interruption of positions caused by the early incident” and the race was declared “official.” Furthermore, the track lure operator told regulators he was “thankful that no one was seriously injured.”

This is not the first time that greyhound deaths have been documented at the Sarasota racetrack. Our informant told us that second greyhound had died at the facility under similar circumstances weeks earlier, and this was confirmed by the state Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering:

“I again spoke with DVM David Wyatt, about any additional electrocutions that had recently occurred … He showed an entry in his Treatment & Injury Sheet. It involved, ‘Se’s Yukon Joe’ which hit the guard rail going into the first turn, he then continued to run and collapsed after the far turn … Cause of death was listed as unknown; consider electrocution, cardiac arrest, brain hemorrhage, aneurysm, etc.”

Finally, another state investigative report indicates that at least 14 greyhounds died at Sarasota Kennel Club between November 2009 and April 2010, including three greyhounds who died on the same day.

When the Herald-Tribune asked the track for comment, Racing Director Thomas Bowersox contradicted his own records and claimed that there was “no way to say for sure” whether Raiders Uncle Mo died due to electrocution or “something else.”  He then stated:

“Dogs are euthanized for reasons other than accidents.”

To our surprise, Bowersox also claimed that the track’s injury records are open to inspection, but added that he would “prefer not to send” them to me. This was shortly after GREY2K USA sent the track a letter urging it to voluntarily release its greyhound injury data. So far, we have not received a response.

The sad death of Raiders Uncle Mo is another example of why greyhound injury reports should be made available to the public. If we had not received a confidential tip, his fate would have been simply swept away as another nameless dog. All of the greyhounds racing in Florida, and elsewhere, deserve better.

 

170 comments

Camilla Vaga
Camilla Vaga2 years ago

that is so cruel, poor dogs

Carrie-Anne Brown

very sad but thanks for sharing

Lisa Zarafonetis
Lisa Zarafonetis2 years ago

This is really pitiful!!! :( Shared on FB.

Tricia Hamilton
Tricia Hamilton2 years ago

Animal racing is not a sport men!! Get up your asses and play soccer or baseball!!

David V.
David V.2 years ago

All animal racing needs to be banned. These animals were not put on this earth for our entertainment. These races are cruel & inhumane.

Patrish Dehler
Patricia Dehler2 years ago

This is so disturbing because I live about 10 miles from the Sarasota track. I am hoping that track will close also. Sarasota has a lot of wealthy people that living in the their community on the barrier islands as well as in town. While they do a lot of charity events maybe this should be put on their 'do good' list!

Loretta P.
Loretta P.2 years ago

This is so very sad. Greyhound racing should be banned everywhere. These gentle dogs are horribly abused and discarded without a second glance. Cruelty at its height for human entertainment. How can people who participate in this abuse sleep at night?

Christine Jones
christine jones2 years ago

Electrified lure tracks have not place at these tracks. What's the purpose of them? Greyhounds have no place on these tracks. Horses have no place on tracks. Leave racing to humans. No whips are used. Take enhancement drugs at your own risk. Leave animals out of it.

Manuela C.
Manuela C.2 years ago

This must stop!!!

Claudia Cavallo
Claudia Cavallo2 years ago

It's terrible that these wonderful dogs are considered not more than an object that can br thrown away when it's not needed anymore, they are so sweet and deserve more respect and better lives, I feel so angry