Our point is that the relationship between the overlords and the various boards, commissions and regulators charged with maintaining some semblance of human decency in an industry based on the commodification of innocent living creatures for (no) profit is fraught with...well let's just say it's fraught.
When Saul Mays applied for a license to own and train greyhounds in 2002, his rap sheet signaled he was not a model citizen. Convicted of kidnapping his estranged wife at gunpoint in 1988, after taking her into the woods and sexually assaulting her, he had served three years in prison.Yes, well we don't personally know Mr. Mays, but it seems to us he possibly has some...uh...impulse control issues and perhaps it wouldn't be in the best interests of the dogs, not to mention his fellow kennel employees to allow this man inside the fence, as it were. Wouldn't you agree Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering?
The staff at the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering recommended Mays application to race dogs be denied, but Mays appealed and was granted a license.Yes. Well, OK then...paid his debt to society and all. We get that. Plus, we're sure his appeal contained ample evidence of how he had turned his life around and members of the Division went through it with a fine tooth comb looking for even the slightest indication that Mr. Mays would return to his former ways. After all, that is what they get paid for, that is their area of expertise, their raison d'etre as it were. We all just need to take a step back here and trust these professionals to do their jobs and not jump to any conclusions about Mr. Mays simply because he made a few...umm...unfortunate decisions.
A year later in 2003, investigators found evidence that Mays’ dogs were being abused at the Jefferson County Kennel Club. He was investigated at his Monticello kennel then, again in 2005 and 2010, when inspectors found seven “very thin” dogs and others covered with tick bites.OK Bub, you had your chance. We were willing to let bygones be bygones, the past is the past and all that, but you blew it. Now the mighty hammer of righteousness which is the the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering is about to come down on you like rain came down on Noah, like Joshua came down on the Canaanites, like Jesus came down on the moneylenders, like third grade math came down on the overlords even though it was their fourth time through. Sorry, ran out of biblical allusions there. Anyway, you thought prison was bad? You'll wish you were back in prison when the Division gets through with you. Well, actually you may be back in prison, so forget that. Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering? Unleash Hell:
In each case, state regulators concluded there was not enough evidence of abuse and no action was taken.We're sorry this had to happen to you, but the truth is you brought it on yourself, you wait, what?
Mays got his first reprimand in 2012, only after the Washington County Kennel Club in Ebro reported that greyhounds Mays put up for adoption were “covered in ticks” and the dogs “all appeared to be in poor overall shape.”Oh, OK here we go. Righteous Hammer? Do your thing
But the 2012 penalty didn’t come from the state. It came from the National Greyhound Association, which represents owners and trainers. The organization banned Mays for life from “any further involvement with NGA-registered greyhounds.”Oh Come On Now. This guy is such a lousy overlord even the other overlords don't want him around? Jeez, Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering, do something will you? Post an insult to his Facebook page, ignore him at parties, tell all your friends he's a big poopyhead, something.
Florida regulators fined Mays $300 and let him keep his license.Well, say what you will about the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering because whatever you say it's not going to change the fact that they are about as useful as a bottle of sun tan lotion in a coal mine.
Florida’s law gives the Division of Pari-mutuel Wagering the power to revoke or suspend a license of an dog or horse trainer or owner if he has been convicted of a felony or is found abusing animals. But, based on dozens of cases reviewed by the Miami Herald and Tampa Bay Times, the implementation of the rules are lax, and the penalties are often weak.Oh really? Thanks for the insight Sherlock. What was your first clue?
Tajiana Ancora-Brown, spokeswoman for the Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering said the agency has reduced its pending case load by 30 percent in the last year after reorganizing its legal office and hiring an additional lawyer."We find we can get through the cases much more quickly if we just ignore them and throw the files in a big pile out behind the building," she added.
Meanwhile, the list of animal abusers in Florida continues to grow. It includes Miami Beach dog trainer Jose Lopez, who lost his license in Arizona in 2008 after being convicted of running a drug and prostitution ring. Lopez was fired in 2011 from the Florida Kennel Compound in Miami, which houses dogs for both Flagler and Mardi Gras race tracks, after neglecting nearly 50 greyhounds by failing to vaccinate them as required by law."He gave us his word and a pinky swear," Ancora-Brown said. "I mean, in an industry that puts profit above everything, even the lives of the dogs, how were we to know he might not tell us everything about him being a twice convicted felon and all? I mean, he dressed well, so you know..."
It took the state three years to file charges, during which time Lopez continued to race dogs at the Sarasota Kennel Club. Finally, in July of this year, state regulators repealed Lopez’s license, saying he had lied to them about having been convicted of unemployment compensation fraud in Florida in 1994 and about his 2008 conviction in Arizona.
Another trainer, Jennifer Forsyth, was convicted of animal cruelty in Pennsylvania in 2012 after state officials raided her kennel and found sick and starving animals on the property. Forsyth then moved to Florida, where she held a license to race dogs. It took nearly two years before state regulators figured out that state law prohibited her from operating here. They pulled her license this year."Hey, who has time to read all that stuff?" a member of the Division who asked to remain anonymous because he was interviewed at a strip club said. "Most of us can barely read a Denny's menu. Even with the pictures."
Robert Dawson, a trainer responsible for more than 100 dogs at the Palm Beach Kennel Club, has been cited by state regulators 14 times for violating rules, more than half of which for drugging dogs. He has been fined eight times and still holds a license."Well, in his defense we didn't make it clear that we were fining him for drugging dogs," Ancora-Brown said. "There's a possibility he thought it was for parking in a handicapped zone."
And then there’s Ursula O’Donnell...OK, now that's just piling on right there. Sure the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering is about as useful as Sarah Palin in a Jeopardy Tournament, but bringing up Ursula O'Donnell is just over the line. We mean, this lady has been killing dogs for years. She's probably responsible for the senseless murder of thousands of innocent greyhounds. If heartless cruelty was a caramel and chocolate cookie, she'd be the whole Twix factory (both right and left). And she hasn't even gotten so much as a cold look of disdain from the Division. Ursula O'Donnell is the poster child for the complete irrelevance of the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering. She's like the queen of Can't Touch This, and the only thing worse would be to make members of the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering walk around wearing lapel pins with a picture of her on them so they'd be constantly reminded that their unrelenting unbelievable, incomprehensible incompetence is killing dogs every day. You know, on second thought, that's not such a bad idea. What do you think Rosie?
I am a very happy, goofy and silly girl. My foster family had to work very hard to get this photo of me because every time someone wants to take my picture all I want to do is give them kisses. I love to give kisses. I wag my tail all the time because I am such a happy girl. I have been very friendly with everyone I have met. I learned to go up and down the stairs on my first try. I love to play with my toys. I get along great with my foster mom’s Greyhound. I have not met any small dogs or cats yet so I am not sure how I am with them. I have not had any accidents in the house. I love to go for walks but I need to work on my leash skills. I do very well when I’m in my crate. For more information about this dog, and other rescued racing greyhounds looking for homes, go here. If you don't know about the plight of racing greyhounds go here and here.