Senator Boylan questions Agriculture Minister about those running “greyhound care centre”

27 Nov

Senator Lynn Boylan has asked the Agriculture Minister to confirm that nobody involved in a new Greyhound Racing Ireland-funded “greyhound care centre” in Tipperary has “exported [greyhounds] to countries that do not have adequate welfare standards”.

During a meeting of the Joint Committee on Agriculture on Tuesday (24 November 2020), Senator Boylan (Sinn Féin) stated: “Can the Minister outline what checks and balances have been put in place regarding those who run that greyhound care centre. Can you give a firm commitment to this Committee that nobody who is involved in the running of that greyhound care centre has exported greyhounds to destinations that breach [Greyhound Racing Ireland’s] own code of conduct which is that greyhounds should not be exported to countries that do not have adequate welfare standards. And if it was to come to light that anybody who is involved in running that care centre, has been involved in the export of greyhounds to countries that do not comply with the greyhound code of conduct, will that person be removed and will that tender be taken away from that person?”

Immediately after her statement, the chairman of the meeting, Jackie Cahill TD, addressed Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue, saying: “Minister keep your answers as concise as you can, please, because others want to get in”.

Jackie Cahill (Fianna Fáil, Tipperary) is a Thurles Greyhound Stadium director who holds shares in the privately operated track. This week, he said he would oppose a motion to defund greyhound racing “with every breath I have in my body.” In a statement he referred to “the care centre that opened last July in Horse and Jockey, just outside of my hometown of Thurles in Co Tipperary.”

Responding to Senator Boylan, Minister McConalogue stated: “In relation to the greyhound care centre in Tipperary, I don’t have answers to the questions you raised in relation to that. We will come back to you on those points.”

Numerous Irish greyhounds have shamefully been exported to countries with little or no animal welfare legislation, including Pakistan, a country condemned for its appalling treatment of animals.

Among the Irish greyhounds who have ended up there is a 4-year-old named Granard Swift. The greyhound is being used in coursing 6,500km away in Pakistan. According to the Greyhound Racing Ireland website, she was “rehomed as pet”

In 2017, as part of an appeal to stop greyhound exports to Pakistan, ICABS supplied the Department of Agriculture with a list of over 200 Irish-born greyhounds who had already ended up in Pakistan. Among them was Crafty Barrazo (records show that the breeder of Crafty Barrazo was former Irish Coursing Club president Brian Divilly). Sickening video footage showed this greyhound chasing a rabbit during a coursing meeting in Pakistan.

The Department of Agriculture was told about animal cruelty horrors in Pakistan, including stomach-churning footage posted on Facebook by a Pakistani national who was identified as the owner of greyhounds imported from Ireland. The footage showed a tethered pig suffering a sustained and brutal attack from two of his hunting dogs – With his leg tied to a post, the pig was unable to escape as the dogs bit into his underbelly and attempted to chew off his ears. A crowd of merciless bloodsport enthusiasts looked on as the doomed creature’s pain intensified.

Also brought to the Department of Agriculture’s attention was a statement from greyhound campaign group CAGED Nationwide which noted that: “greyhounds bred for the racing industry are being forced to travel thousands of miles to countries like Pakistan where there are no welfare laws whatsoever to protect them from suffering and death.”

Kerry Elliman of Birmingham Greyhound Protection also condemned the exports, saying that a contact in Pakistan told her that it’s “dreadful for the dogs there, it’s always mega hot, there’s no animal protection laws, no rehoming programs and not many vets and the ones that are out there are hours away.” He told her he has seen greyhounds “starved to death at the end of their careers”.

At the time, then TD Tommy Broughan questioned the Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture about the export of Irish greyhounds to Pakistan “where the animal welfare regime is deplorable”. He was told that “no greyhounds have been exported directly” – a clear attempt to sidestep the issue of indirect exports to the Asian country



Another €19.2 million of scarce public funds has been approved for greyhound racing for 2021. Since 2001, greyhound racing has received more than a quarter of a billion euros of taxpayers’ money. Please contact your local TDs and urge them to oppose this funding.

Visit the Oireachtas website for contact details for TDs

Urge the leaders of Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, the Green Party, Sinn Fein and Labour to stop the funding and back a ban on cruel greyhound racing

Micheál Martin TD
Leader, Fianna Fail
Phone: 021-432 0088
Leinster House: 01–618 4350

Leo Varadkar TD
Leader, Fine Gael
Telephone: 01-619 4020
Tweet to:

Eamon Ryan TD
Leader, Green Party
Tel: 01 618 3894

Mary Lou McDonald TD
Leader, Sinn Fein
Tel: (01) 727 7102

Alan Kelly TD
Leader, Labour Party
Tel: 067 34190

“Stop state funding to cruel greyhound racing” – Email all Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, Green Party, Sinn Fein and Labour Party TDs.

Fianna Fáil TDs;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

Fine Gael TDs;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;; Patrick.O’;;;;;;;;;

Green Party TDs;;;;;;;;;;

Sinn Fein TDs;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

Labour Party TDs;;;;;

Please sign and share petitions

Irish Government: Stop Giving Millions of Euro to Cruel Greyhound Racing

Stop supporting the cruel greyhound “industry”

GAA: Stop club fundraisers at greyhound tracks

Tell Gain Pet Nutrition to Stop Sponsoring Greyhound Racing

Irish Government grants to greyhound racing

2001 €11,777,583
2002 €13,613,163
2003 €12,837,200
2004 €13,382,800
2005 €13,670,000
2006 €14,012,000
2007 €14,572,000
2008 €15,257,000
2009 €13,625,600
2010 €11,852,800
2011 €11,460,000
2012 €11,258,000
2013 €11,004,000
2014 €10,844,000
2015 €13,600,000
2016 €14,800,000
2017 €16,000,000
2018 €16,000,000
2019 €16,800,000
2020 €16,800,000
2021 €19,200,000

Total: €292 Million (€0.292 Billion)

Source: Department of Agriculture


An Irish greyhound shamefully exported to a country with “DEPLORABLE” animal welfare was, Greyhound Racing Ireland is claiming, rehomed as a pet.

“Ireland to Pakistan: A one way ticket for greyhounds”: A report by Stefania Traini of Italian greyhound protection group, Pet Levrieri, highlights the numerous Irish greyhounds now in Pakistan

A Pakistani national who owns greyhounds imported from Ireland has posted photographs of himself posing with a handgun and a machine gun.

A photograph of the president of the Irish Coursing Club posing next to a representative of a Pakistani greyhound kennel has been deleted from Facebook.

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