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Friday, November 20, 2009

Help Save The Greyhounds

Attention animal and pet lovers.  Time is of the essence for this very, very serious situation so please help to do your part, even if it means just spreading the word...

The Dairyland Race Track in Kenosha, Wisconsin announced that it will be closing on December 31, 2009.   Not only does the announcement mean an estimated 183 people will lose their jobs, but regulators, kennel operators and owners, as well as regional greyhound adoption groups, must scramble to find homes for what one adoption provider said could be anywhere from 300 to 500 racing greyhounds.  If these beautiful animals are not adopted they will likely have to be euthanized.
Please help save the greyhounds; there is only 6 weeks to get this task done. 
You can do your part by contacting any of the following people, or by simply spreading the word and sharing this information with people you know.

Joanne Kehoe Operations Director (312) 559-0887
Dairyland Race Track Adoption Center (262) 612-8256

How something like this happens:

Dog tracks opened in Wisconsin after voters in 1987 approved a constitutional amendment allowing the creation of a state-run lottery and legalizing pari-mutual betting.  In 1989, state regulators with dollar signs in their eyes approved five operating licenses for pari-mutual greyhound racing in Wisconsin.  For a time, race fans and bettors flocked to the tracks in Geneva Lakes, Kaukauna, Lake Delton, Hudson and Kenosha, Wisconsin -- generating millions of dollars for the state and the developers.  However,  in 1991 a federal judge ruled that because Wisconsin had a lottery and legalized betting at dog tracks, the state also had to let Indian tribes open casinos.  Even though there were more than 3.5 million visitors to the dog tracks in 1991, the first year all five were open, attendance dropped steadily in the 1990s. In 1994, four of the five tracks reported losses and ultimately had to close their doors. Only Dairyland was making any money, but records indicate that currently this has become a nullity.

Records at the state Division of Gaming, which regulated the track, show the trend was unmistakable. In 1990, the first year the track was open, $210.6 million was wagered. Twelve years later, in 2002, the handle was down to $102.7 million. In 2008, attendance totaled 233,217 and the handle was $46 million.  A state Gaming spokesman said that in the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2009, the state took in $1.1 million in revenue from Dairyland, but spent $920,400 to regulate the sport - nearly a wash.

In the meantime, greyhound adoption groups already have been trying to find homes for greyhounds that are not headed to another track or an owner elsewhere in the country.  Please help save the greyhounds from becoming a victim to this economic decision.

1 comment:

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