Members of the Senedd have asked for a consultation to consider banning greyhound racing in Wales.

Wales is one of only 10 countries in the world where greyhound racing is still legal. Yesterday, Sened decided that an in-depth consultation was needed so that the request for an end to sport could be properly considered. Discussing the Senedd Petitions Committee report calling for a ban, Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds MS said: “For me it is about the kind of Wales we want.

“I don’t want a Wales where animals are raised on an industrial scale for sport. I don’t want to be in Wales where betting and gambling is promoted and encouraged.

Greyhound racing is about to be banned in Wales

He continued: “I don’t want to be in Wales where animals are hurt. I don’t want to be in Wales where, when the animals finish their races, they go to the kennels, where they wait for people to come and collect them.

“It depends on the charities and those charities are here today. They don’t get any funding for this other than GBGB bonds to go home.

“And let me tell you a little bit about that. The GBGB Repatriation Obligation will only go to families who are not opposed to greyhound racing. This means that there is only one location in Wales that receives the Great Britain Greyhound Rehoming Council. connection”.

Luke Sergeant MS said: “I cannot support any event that puts dogs at risk of injury, so I support the petition and hope the government takes action in this area.”

But some of the questions raised included whether banning the sport would have a positive impact on animal welfare or could be harmful. Welsh Conservative Joel James MS has expressed concern that making greyhound racing illegal could mean it could take place secretly without being regulated.

He said: “All owners or breeders who abuse animals, or have low welfare standards for their animals, will simply no longer be visible and will go underground. They will also have no qualms about destroying your animals.”

Minister for Agriculture and North Wales and Trenath Leslie Griffiths said: “We will explore all options and take into account the views of the public and all stakeholders. While discussions of an outright ban are necessary and will undoubtedly grab headlines, it is imperative that we address this issue in an informed and appropriate manner.”

Malcom Tams of Valleys Greyhounds previously said: “We are treading very thin at the moment due to the lack of a license because I am limited in what I can do. I bought this place. I spent half a million pounds trying to map it. During my career, only two of our dogs, who race here, have had to be withdrawn due to serious injuries.”

He added: “I can see where people are coming from when they say dogs shouldn’t run, but you have to see where we are coming from. Our trail has been presented as a dangerous dog but in the last 12 months we have had eight visits from vets and Caerphilly Council who have said he is still in good condition.’

Some of the other points raised by activists during the debate were that some greyhounds ran in scorching summer temperatures. In addition, another problem can be that, at the end of their career, greyhounds are often left waiting for a home.

MS Jack Sergeant said: “It is absolutely clear that greyhound racing in Wales cannot go on as it is now. This is absolutely and fundamentally clear.

“I really appreciate these activists and the petitioner because without the petitioner we would not be having today’s debate; we wouldn’t have that investigation. I remain attentive to the query.

“I look forward to its results and look forward to working with colleagues as a member of Senedd, not as chairman, to continue to press the Welsh government to deliver the report’s recommendations and pull the curtain on greyhound racing in Wales. Diolch”.

The UK’s biggest animal welfare charities have received more support from Senedd members for their joint call to end greyhound racing in Wales. RSPCA Chief Executive Chris Sherwood said: “It is great to see this debate highlight the strength of support in the Senate not only for improving greyhound welfare but also for a complete end to greyhound racing in Wales. .

“The Petitions Committee inquiry was very important, highlighting the numerous welfare issues associated with greyhound racing that exist from birth to death. The strong public support for the petition and the work of many charities on this issue reminds us of what we can achieve together to protect animals.

“Wales now has a real chance to make a statement and protect these dogs from this dangerous sport once and for all. With no vet on the track and no obligation to publish figures for injuries or fatalities, it is difficult to assess the true extent of the welfare problems in Wales currently caused by greyhound racing, but as long as the sport continues, dogs will be unnecessarily placed at serious risk of painful injury and death.

“Wales is one of ten countries in the world that hold commercial greyhound races. It is time for Wales to stop chasing greyhounds and write this so-called sport into the history books.”

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