A long running welfare case was finalised at Tubbercurry District Court this week where a conviction under the Welfare of Greyhounds Act 2011, relating to a breach of the Welfare of Greyhounds Regulations 2016, was secured by Rásaíocht Con Éireann (RCÉ). Judge Kevin Kilrane, fined the offending party €1,000 and costs in the sum of €5,682 were awarded to RCÉ.
The case related to inspections undertaken by RCÉ in 2019 whereby RCÉ Welfare Officers were satisfied that the care and welfare arrangements for the greyhounds on the premises were not to the required standards. In addition, there was a failure to ensure that the greyhounds on the premises had received the appropriate care from a veterinary practitioner when it was required. RCÉ seized twelve greyhounds from the property in December 2019 and placed same in foster care pending re-homing of the greyhounds. RCÉ, in conjunction with its sister entity, the Irish Retired Greyhound Trust, secured ‘forever homes’ for eight of the greyhounds seized from the property.
Gerard Dollard, Chief Executive Officer, Rásaíocht Con Éireann, very much welcomed the outcome of the case at Tubbercurry District Court. He stated “The effort made by Rásaíocht Con Éireann’s Welfare team in relation to this particular case and ultimate seizure of greyhounds is very much in line with RCÉ’s priority of maintaining animal welfare at the centre of the industry. Where breaches in relation to the Welfare of Greyhounds Act are identified, RCÉ will take all the necessary steps to ensure that the care and welfare needs of racing greyhounds are properly addressed by the parties responsible. The decision of the District Justice at Tubbercurry District Court underlines the fact that the Courts will also take such matters very seriously.”
RCÉ implements a comprehensive welfare programme with 455 welfare inspections being conducted in 2020. The overall inspection programme has been impacted in relation to the restrictions imposed by Covid-19. All reports received on the Confidential Welfare Line (061 448100) are assessed by Welfare Officers and appropriate action is immediately taken.