When animals have a dollar value to their owner, how do concerned individuals or groups negotiate to release them? One answer is to turn to mediation. In Florida, one of the few remaining states that allows greyhound racing, all 17 of a trainer’s greyhounds apparently tested positive for benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine. Doping is only the beginning of the hardships that racing dogs face however, and that’s for race-worthy dogs. Equally troubling is the fate of greyhounds who are injured or don’t win. They may find their way to shelters or may even be killed. Greyhounds are sensitive animals with low body-fat and little resistance to heat or cold. During sport or transportation they can easily get sick or suffer injuries. The frequency of greyhound injuries and deaths is extremely high, and until recently was barely even recorded.
Carey Theil, executive director of track monitoring group Grey2K USA called the Florida case “the largest greyhound drug case in American history.” He added that it looks likely to be a race-fixing case too. Greyhound racing is often kept afloat by a combination of state support and its interdependence with the casino and gambling industry. Greyhounds are expensive animals and owners expect a return on their investment.
Mediation Can Solve Complex Problems
The process of negotiating to release greyhounds is extremely complex and sensitive. At Boileau Conflict Solutions we are aware of the financial and emotional obstacles owners may confront when releasing their animals, as well as the complex relationships between the gambling and racing industries. Some issues that may need to be addressed when negotiating for greyhound release include:
- Greyhound rehabilitation if greyhounds are injured or sick (and any costs of medical care)
- Negotiating with shelters or other future homes for greyhounds and any costs associated with the greyhounds’ future care
- Negotiating with a complex network of owners, trainers, breeders, kennels with a vested interest in the industry
- Negotiating with other businesses, such as casinos, that may financially support and/or benefit from relationships with the greyhound industry
- Negotiating with local authorities who may support greyhound racing tourism
- Locating benefactors who may be able to fund greyhounds’ future care
- Planning for greyhounds’ safe release, including safe transportation
- Financial compensation for owners
How We Can Help
Boileau Conflict Solutions is home to the U.S.’s first animal rights mediation clinic. As caring, well-educated mediators who apply financial, legal, psychological and mathematical approaches to conflict resolution, we are committed to resolving conflict using effective, yet innovative strategies that consider all interests. We present animals as stakeholders in any dispute. Successful animal release solutions don’t stop at conflict resolution, but should always involve careful planning for the future wellbeing of the animal, including safe animal transportation to a new home. We are available to speak about your animal dispute 7 days a week from our offices in Campbell, CA, Irvine, CA and Boulder, CO. Please call us by phone, skype or zoom, or visit our offices, for a completely confidential consultation.