A Kent charity dedicated to finding retired greyhounds loving homes when their careers on-track end has partnered with Central Park Stadium to raise funds and awareness of its work.
Retired Greyhounds Canterbury was established in 2020 and can care for 18 greyhounds recently retired from the sport at any given time from its kennels near Wingham.
Its operation is managed entirely by a team of volunteers who share walking, home check and fundraising responsibilities to support efforts in finding a suitable home for all residents.
Among those in search of a forever home leading up to Christmas are Sarah, aka Ballykevin Sarah, and Boycie – known in the racing world as Crackaway Boycie.
Both greyhounds headed back to their roots by attending the recent Premier Greyhound Racing Kent Derby Grand Final at the Sittingbourne venue where they met racegoers and collectively raised over £200 in support of the charity’s work.
Bob Tice, a trustee of Retired Greyhounds Canterbury, hopes creating extra awareness of the charity’s work can help debunk some common assumptions members of the public make about retired greyhounds.
“Greyhounds are the most loving, gentle, animals you could wish to come across,” said Bob. “The majority are fantastic with children and can comfortably adapt to home life in retirement.
“One of the biggest assumptions about greyhounds is they require a lot of exercise - this could not be further from the reality. In fact, greyhounds are one of the laziest breeds in existence and will sleep for up to 20 hours each day requiring only two short 20-minute walks.
“Once you have owned a retired greyhound, you will never go back to a different breed.
“It’s great to have the opportunity to spread this message at Central Park Stadium who are very supportive of our work which plays an important role in securing the best futures for these wonderful dogs when their racing days end.”
The work of Retired Greyhounds Canterbury is supported by the Greyhound Retirement Scheme (GRS) – an initiative set up by the Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB), the regulator for licensed British greyhound racing.
It helps with the costs associated with a greyhound’s retirement.
As a GRS approved homing centre, Retired Greyhounds Canterbury receives a £400 bond for each racing greyhound it takes in – paid for jointly by its owner and the GBGB – which goes towards kennelling, feeding and caring for the greyhound until a suitable home is found.
Since its launch in 2020, the GBGB has paid out nearly £3million as part of the GRS to support its network of approved homing centres like Retired Greyhounds Canterbury.
Hayley Huntley, General Manager at Central Park Stadium, said: “Bob and his team of volunteers should be applauded for their efforts, and we’re so pleased to work closely together by finding retired greyhounds their forever homes.
“The charity has its own shop onsite where you can support its fundraising efforts and learn more about the greyhounds living at Rosedale Kennels who will go on to make wonderful and loving pets.
“We’d encourage our visitors considering bringing a four-legged friend into their family home to learn more about greyhounds and their care requirements.”
Further information about Retired Greyhounds Canterbury is available online via www.retiredgreyhoundscanterbury.co.uk. Alternatively, you can call the charity direct via 07783 367032 to arrange a kennel visit.