Racing Greyhounds in Asia Denied Adoption, Killed Instead

Greyhound racing is an unsavory business. From poor living conditions to illegal drugs, racing dogs lead unenviable lives.

On top of that, they tend to be short lives. Racers live for only a few years: they “are usually put down if they fail to finish in the top three for five consecutive races,” reports the South China Morning Post.

A few owners who race their dogs are compassionate enough to want the animals adopted rather than killed. But a greyhound boarding facility in Macau is refusing owners’ requests to adopt retired dogs out and insisting on killing them instead, according to the advocacy group Anima.

Even if the Macau Canidrome agreed to adoptions, it might not be easy to find homes for the greyhounds. “Macau is an overcrowded, over-developed enclave dedicated to huge gambling complexes,” The Guardian reports. “It has a shifting population of mainland Chinese tourists and high-rollers and migrant workers from south-east Asia – leaving little time or space for the niceties of pet ownership.”

Most of the dogs at the Canidrome are imported from Australia, which is facing pressure to ban the export of greyhounds to Macau. “Many argue the only solution is to end the racing,” The Guardian notes.

The Macau Canidrome, the only greyhound racing track in Asia, euthanizes more than 30 dogs a month.  It also sees a startling number of injuries: “Grey2K said that its analysis of records held by Canidrome showed that 302 greyhounds were injured in a 10-week period, many suffering multiple injuries, including broken limbs,” according to The Guardian. A list of the injuries is available from GREY2K USA.

Greyhounds in the U.S. also suffer frequent injuries, including “broken legs, paralysis, head trauma, and death from cardiac arrest.”

They also suffer more intentional abuse. They “are confined in small cages barely large enough for them to stand up or turn around for” 20 or more hours each day, according to advocacy group GREY2K USA. In the United States “dogs are fed the cheapest meat available,” meaning the flesh from “dying, diseased, disabled and dead livestock” that is deemed unfit for human consumption.

Some racing dogs are also fed illegal drugs, like cocaine. One trainer found guilty of doping his dog was fined a mere $50.

Mother dogs and their puppies are kept in warehouse-type cages, stacked one atop the other, at American facilities.

The fates of greyhounds bred for racing are not surprising. Any time humans use animals for their own purposes the animals get the short end of the stick: this is the case for factory farming, vivisection and animals in circuses. Matters deteriorate when corporations like the Macau Canidrome enter the picture. As profits become more important the animals’ welfare matters even less than it did before.

The Macau Canidrome has so far refused to develop or participate in an adoption program. It is time to shut it down and end greyhound racing in Asia.


Related Stories:

Greyhound Racing/Gambling “Decoupling” Will Help Animals

Time to Make Real Changes for Greyhounds

Humane Advocates are Winning the Debate Over Greyhound Racing



Valentina R.
Valentina R1 years ago

If you wish to save a Greyhound, please adopt one from a specific breed rescue.

Keith C.
Keith Charman3 years ago

But thinking again, it is possible that some of these poor greyhounds will actually make it back to australia - in the form of fur-lined fashion accessories. Hmm... that a nice purse you have...

Keith C.
Keith Charman3 years ago

Australians seem to know about this - they don't care. They just want an economic relationship with China and turn a blind eye to all the stories of horrific abuse. I like the word "euthanasia" - can you imagine a vet gently putting the greyhound to sleep - China? I would suggest these Australian born racers are skinned alive just like the millions of other dogs in China.

Elisa Zeeley
Elisa Zeeley3 years ago

Not surprised at these people not having one ounce of human compassion for these poor greyhounds.These dogs (and animals in general) are looked at as either food or ways to make money. If they can't use or exploit animals in either of these categories they are considered trash to be discarded. Did you read about the avian flu scare that popped up again in China recently? Poultry sellers took 40,000 baby ducks and threw them into ovens, alive. If you honestly think these people have any conscience when it comes to animals think again. Hope to God I am still alive to see China get it's comeuppance...

Debbie Tate
Debra Tate3 years ago


Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W3 years ago

Christine, where is the petition? I can't find it. :-(

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W3 years ago


Gwen Pace
Gwen Ferry3 years ago

Wherever and whenever animals are bred to race or fight, you find the lowlife human beings. These people are not interested in anything but money. The welfare of the animals is the furtherest thing from their minds. From the breeders, they go to the trainers who continue to inflict cruelty upon these poor defenseless animals, most of them are forced into a sport that they will not succeed in and face a gruesome death. Authorities should police these so called animal sports, crack down on the lowlife people who run them, or better still end them forever. There are so many people in this World, even circuses, who make the life of animals a misery, from the moment they are born until they die. Puppymills are another disgusting legalised abuse of animals. All people involved in these industries are the lowest of low.

Edvanir L.
Edvanir L3 years ago

So terrible. I hope to see those races banned for good.

Linda P.
Linda P3 years ago

This is horrible. I would love to see all dog racing end, it has always been a torture chamber for these magnificent creatures. Killing them instead of letting them finally have a life with a family that will care and love them is insane, they deserve a normal life.