This is the Coalition for the Protection of Greyhounds’ eulogy for the greyhounds bred, used and killed by the racing industry. It was delivered at the Brisbane March for the Murdered Million on 24 July 2016.
I was thinking about what I was going to say in my eulogy for the greyhounds when a photo popped up on my Facebook news feed.
It was a photo of a dog in a shelter, with the words: “When I die, let it be as a pet so that someone will remember me.”
How appropriate for the greyhounds that we are gathering for here today.
I’m going to read out to you the names of several race dogs who recently died in Queensland.
Remember these names when people ask you what’s wrong with greyhound racing.
Who Said. Born on the 25th of January, 2014. Raced at Capalaba three weeks ago. Fractured his hock. Euthanised at the age of two and a half years old.
Lowanna. Born on the 22nd of March, 2014. Raced at Ipswich on the 8th of July. Collided twice with other greyhounds on the track. Injured her foreleg. Euthanised at the age of two years and five months.
Recent. Born on the 24th of September, 2014. Raced at Rockhampton on the 13th of July. Collided with another dog while racing. Injured his wrist. Euthanised at the age of twenty two months.
Many of the greyhounds that we marched for today did not have names.
Many of them were just one of many dogs on a greyhound property – commodities, product for the racing industry.
Many of them would never have known the bond of trust and love and devotion that many of us share with our own adopted greyhounds.
The dogs we marched for today were brought into this world, not to join someone as beloved family member.
They were brought into this world because someone wanted to try their hand at the lottery of breeding lots of puppies until they produced the next Fernando Bale or Sweet It Is and win over a million dollars in prize money.
A friend of mine who rescues greyhounds in New South Wales recently lost her beloved greyhound Dora. Some of you may know her – her name is Helen Lauricella.
She chose this quote for Dora’s final resting place, and it’s one that I would like to dedicate to the dogs we marched for today:
“God came down to the green earth and took a beautiful flower from his garden.”
To the greyhounds who were killed at the track, we mourn you. To the 55 greyhounds whose corpses were discovered in Bundaberg, we mourn you. To the 99 greyhounds buried in a mass grave in New South Wales, we mourn you. To the dogs who don’t make it into the news, put down in vet clinics or donated for experiments – we mourn you.
God gave us beautiful flowers in abundance in these dogs, and they are being destroyed out of ignorance, greed and arrogance by the racing industry.
I want you to look at your dog, your own beautiful flower, and cherish them every day for the rest of their lives.
I want you to keep talking about these dead greyhounds, the ones who have no names, the ones who never knew love and who will never know love now.
I want you to do everything you can, so that in the years to come, we will no longer need to March like we Marched today for the victims of greyhound racing.
Make no mistake. This is a message for the greyhound racing industry:
“Those who sow the wind shall reap the typhoon.”
It has started in New South Wales. And it is coming in Queensland. We will not stop until we have ended greyhound racing in this country.