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Dublin: 13 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019
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Irish Greyhound Board to spend estimated €350k on traceability database

It comes after damaging revelations into the industry were highlighted by RTÉ in the summer.

File photo. Greyhound racing
File photo. Greyhound racing
Image: Steven Paston/PA Images

THE IRISH GREYHOUND Board (IGB) is looking to tender a contract worth an estimated €350,000 on a greyhound traceability database.

The system will cover the life cycle of greyhounds, in order to record and monitor them from their birth onwards.

It comes after a turbulent few months for the IGB following an RTÉ investigation which found that almost 6,000 greyhounds were killed for not racing fast enough.

There were calls for the government to cease providing funding to the IGB in the wake of the controversy, but it will receive €16.8 million next year under Budget 2020.

The IGB has since promised reforms, including tougher inspections and funding for injured greyhounds. The IGB also told TheJournal.ie that it strongly condemned the practices outlined in the Prime Time programme and said it represented “a minority within the industry”.

 The traceability database will contain details of the greyhound sire and dam, the stud keeper and breeder. It will also keep track of whelping, when a greyhound is sold and who it’s sold to, its race history and when it’s retired from racing.

“At all times a report of what greyhounds should be present at a premises and registered by owner(s) at a premises should be capable of being produced,” the tender document says.

It’ll also pull data from numerous other sources including Irish Coursing Club (ICC) and the Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB).

At the Oireachtas committee hearing last week, IGB chairman Frank Nyhan said it had initiated 31 separate investigations into issues including poor welfare in recent months.

Separately, the IGB had introduced a dedicated care and welfare officer. 

On the new traceability system, he said: “When implemented, the system will allow the whereabouts of a racing greyhound to be monitored by the Irish Greyhound Board throughout its life stages, including birth, registration, racing career, changes of ownership and location, and end of life.”

Legislation enabling the set up of a database was brought in in May with the Greyhound Racing Act 2019

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Sean Murray

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