Friday, May 29, 2009

Friday Hound Blogging

These last few weeks we've been reporting to you on the overlords in Massachusetts and their heroic attempt to remain free of the job market. The results have been less than hoped for, and last week the state senate seemed to put the final kibosh on the whole affair. As you might imagine, this has upset the animal exploitation crowd no end.

Selectmen voiced disappointment about the state Senate’s vote against a proposal to extend dog racing for two years and install slot machines at the state’s four racetracks. “The Senate decided not to bail out a bunch of losers,” said Selectwoman Marie Smith. “And I don’t know where we’re going on this. Well, actually I do know where we're going on this, Walmart Greeter school."

We suggest cross training, as in "Welcome to Walmart, would you like fries with that?" In the current job market, flexibility is the key to success.

However, as the overlords' future becomes more clear, things are getting more cloudy for the dogs. As residents of the kennels at the tracks, they relied upon the expertise, commitment and devotion of those responsible for their care. Because each dog represents such a large investment of time, money and training the overlords maintain the highest standards when it comes to their care and it's not just anybody who can step in and carry on the top flight level of obligation the dogs require, right inspector Tommy Sanchez?

State inspectors at Tucson Greyhound Park discovered a little problem. It seems that Kennel No. 1, recently home to 58 dogs, was a filthy mess. A smattering of dog diarrhea—affectionately known as "blowout" in the business—covered one wall. A bucket of putrid water sat next to cages. Dog crap was abundant. Or to quote the Arizona Department of Racing Report, inspectors found: Black water in a bucket with a foul odor; Filth-splattered walls; Urine, blood and fecal stains on floors and walls; Spoiled food on the floor; Dog fur and other debris in the dog crates; Filthy conditions in the concrete area next to the dog-turnout pens.

"We treat these dogs like rock stars," said track manager Tom Taylor. "And you know how rock stars like to trash their hotel rooms. Heh heh. That's a joke. I'm trying humor to lighten the situation. How's it working?"

Don't know. Let's ask Mr. Sanchez:

They fetched a camera and returned "to take pictures of the filthy conditions," Sanchez said. "When we arrived to the rear of the kennel, our shoes and pants were completely covered in fleas up to our knees, and they were still climbing. "We quickly exited the kennel," he continued, "closed the door and worked desperately at removing the fleas from our clothing."

Doesn't look like stand up comedy is your forte, Mr. Taylor. What else you got?

Taylor has plenty of explanations for how this kennel at his park became so nasty. For one, he says, the kennel operator, a Mr. Randy Jordan, found himself low on cash. So the two men came to a mutual agreement that Jordan would vacate.

OK, blame the other guy. That has possibilities. What do you say Mr. Sanchez?

According to the state report, "Trainer Randy Jordan ... was removed from the kennel due to numerous violations."

Oops. Well, being low on cash could be a violation, right ADR Director Luis Marquez?

Jordan's record includes a batch of violations. They included greyhounds weighing more than their officially registered weight—which could skew betting odds. There were also "drug violations on animals that he was racing," Marquez says, which garnered the trainer a $250 fine.

Um...let's not quibble over the details, the point is with Jordan gone you can get in there and clean the place up, right Mr. Taylor?

So with Jordan gone, what happened next was apparently a lot of nothing. Or perhaps more of the same: Taylor contends that "the kennel operator ... moved out of that building, and we didn't go in there and clean it for two weeks. And the state went in and saw those conditions."

Ah. OK, well look, the dogs were gone and the place was empty so no harm no foul, right Mr. Marquez?

Marquez offers a slightly different take. "A situation like that," he says, "does not occur within two weeks."

Well, we're sure there's a rational explanation. Mr. Taylor?

According to Taylor, however, the dog quarters are normally spotless. "I mean, they clean those kennels three times a day," he says, adding that they're also routinely inspected. "The state does it twice a month, and we do it twice a month." To Taylor it all remains just a wild aberration. "Most of our kennels back there are extremely clean," he says. "I could eat off their floor."

Eww...Coprophagia. Well, everybody needs a hobby, right Ron?

Ron is very mellow and quiet in the house. He enjoys playing with a ball. He is a “collector” and gathers afghans, tote bags and socks and takes them to his crate. He gets lots of enjoyment looking at himself in the mirror. When he is sleeping, he growls, snarls and acts like he’s chasing the demons of hell, but if you nudge him he just wakes up and looks at you. Inside he is very mellow, but when he is outside, he really enjoys running and playing. Ron would do well in a working family home, with well-mannered children, 8 and older. He is good with other dogs and would probably be fine as the only dog in a home that had a family member home most of the time. 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.

1 comment:

George said...

I like the image of Ron collecting afghans, but I'm thinking fellow hounds and not woven blankets.