Warning: The photos below the article are graphic and disturbing
[dropcap2]A[/dropcap2] grim discovery was made over the weekend when a walker came across a mass grave of former racing greyhounds. The bodies in various stages of decomposition were discovered in the open and unburied, at a former quarry about 40 kilometres south east of Limerick.
An initial examination of the site by Limerick Animal Welfare has revealed the bodies of seven or eight dogs, all greyhounds. However as the site is extremely overgrown further bodies may yet be discovered in the thick undergrowth. It appears that the site has been used on more than one occasion to kill and dump the bodies of greyhounds. Some of the bodies are relatively recent, while others are in more advanced stages of decay.
Marion Fitzgibbon spokesperson for The Greyhound Rescue Association of Ireland (GRAI) who has visited the site said, “Two greyhounds, a black bitch and a fawn dog were killed fairly recently as their bodies are not decomposed. They both appear to have been killed by an impact to the head. There are other greyhound bodies in the quarry, Limerick Animal Welfare estimates another seven or eight but the terrain is very overgrown and a proper search may reveal more.”
Marion continued, “We know these dogs are racing greyhounds, as each animal is required to have a unique identifying tattoo in each ear. Some of the tattoos are still legible to the naked eye. This information has been passed to Limerick County Council and the Gardai have also been informed.”
GRAI is calling on the Irish Greyhound Board, Bord na gCon, to thoroughly investigate and report on the circumstances that led to these dogs being killed and dumped in this way.
The GRAI spokeswoman went on, “Bodies being left to rot in the open, as well as being a public health hazard, also portrays the Irish Greyhound Racing Industry in a very poor light and does not live up to the ‘World Class Welfare Standards’ they aim to achieve for greyhounds.. We are certain they will be as shocked as we are upon learning of this killing pit. We are sure that every respectable greyhound owner will welcome firm action being taken against all those involved in the killing of these dogs and who has broken the law.
“However GRAI believes this to be only the tip of the iceberg. Last year there were 3,271 registered greyhound litters in Ireland. A conservative average of seven pups per litter makes 22,904 dogs, however less than 16,000 greyhounds were registered that year to race at 12 months old. Taking into account the number of greyhounds that retire each year due to age or injury GRAI estimate between 8,000 to 10,000 greyhounds disappear every year.”
Marion Fitzgibbon said, “These dogs did not need to die. Greyhounds can make faithful, gentle and loving family pets. They are great with children and unlike many other breeds only need around 30 minutes walk per day. Even when these dogs are unable to race anymore usually at the young age of 3-4 years old, they can still live long and happy lives. Over 6,000 greyhounds are homed as pets every year in the UK and we would like to see greyhounds being homed as pets in Ireland.”
Warning: The photos below are graphic and disturbing
“Disturbing pics taken at the mass grave discovered in Limerick over the weekend. The full story is available on the website http://on.grai.ie/h “
From WARNING! Photos from mass grave, posted by on 4/10/2012 (13 items)
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