Is the government betting on greyhounds with your tax dollars? Follow the greyhound racing money trail.

Animals Australia

Animals Australia team

Last updated February 16, 2015

State governments around Australia are sinking millions of dollars into propping up a ruthless greyhound betting industry — with horrific consequences for animals and people.

As the starting signal goes off, and eight dogs surge forward along the sandy racetrack, more than one life hangs in the balance. How many of these remarkable animals will make it to the finish line without being injured — and fast enough to make them ‘profitable’ to the industry? How much will the Australian watching in the crowd or on TV risk on their greyhound racing bet? How many greyhound bets will they make that night … and what do they stand to lose?

Dig below the shiny public façade of greyhound racing, and you’ll find something much uglier. Far from being ‘family friendly’ entertainment, this cruel betting industry churns relentlessly through money and lives.

And your tax dollars are keeping it afloat.

Terrible dividends

State governments funnel millions of dollars each year into the greyhound racing industry. Breeding incentives, infrastructure and events grants, and appearance fees are all part and parcel of this taxpayer-funded support taken from state treasuries across Australia – all so that punters can make greyhound racing bets.

Yet, despite allegations of doping, money laundering, corruption and awful animal cruelty, the greyhound racing industry has been allowed to self-regulate, receiving very little – if any – government oversight and scrutiny.

Greyhound racing money trail infographicClick to view larger version

So, what’s the return on this massive investment of public funds? An epidemic of gambling. Per capita, Australians gamble more than any other country, with $4 billion wagered on greyhound racing bets each year.

A Productivity Commission review estimated the total social cost of problem gambling to be at least $4.7 billion a year. And a 2014 Price Waterhouse Coopers report concluded that the NSW racing industry is a ‘consumptive sector’, and doesn’t ‘generate any significant productivity benefits to the rest of the economy’.

Hidden victims

Used and discarded by this industry at an appalling rate, greyhounds are on the front line of suffering. Hoping to breed fast, money-making dogs, the priority of the racing industry is to generate gambling profit. Many dogs bred into the industry never make it to a race, and those who are ‘winners’ spend most of their time confined to barren kennels, forced to face a high risk of injury and death during training and racing.

The playful personalities and gentle natures of these dogs are routinely suppressed with brutal training tactics, as exposed through recent investigations by Animals Australia and Animal Liberation Queensland. These ground-breaking operations revealed that dogs are not the only animals paying the ultimate price in this industry…

You can help greyhounds and the community

No more blood money – demand an end to government-funded greyhound racing cruelty today.