Dog Days: University of Limerick students to tackle greyhound stigma

Anthony Geoghegan

Reporter:

Anthony Geoghegan

Members of the UL Greyhound Racing Society on the Living Bridge

Members of the UL Greyhound Racing Society on the Living Bridge

VOLUNTEERS from the University of Limerick were hailed by the Irish Retired Greyhound Trust (IRGT) this week.

The work of members of the UL Greyhound Racing Society received high praise by IRGT as part of their ‘Our People, Their Stories’ awareness programme.

The society was founded in March 2017 by students Joe Sheahan and Julianne O’Keefe.

The co-founders and members organise regular walks around the Castletroy campus for retired greyhounds to keep them active in life away from the dog track.

Askeaton man Joe, the co-founder of the society, attributed his his passion for greyhound racing to his family’s strong background in horse racing.

“I set the society up because I felt it was important to bring like-minded people together over their love and passion for greyhounds.”

“99% of dog-owners love their greyhounds, and with all the misconceptions out there, we’re very keen to fight them and get the truth across,” added Joe.

IRGT has rehomed over 5,000 racing greyhounds since 2008, with 853 rehomed between January and October of this year.

The Irish Greyhound Board contributed over €100,000 to the Irish Retired Greyhound Trust in 2017, sourced from greyhound owners, through a 2% deduction of all winning prize money.

A further 58 greyhounds will be rehomed as pets in Ireland, the UK, Sweden, Italy, the Czech Republic and Belgium at the end of the year.

The student-based group owns Trap Queen, who has three wins to her name in Limerick Greyhound Stadium.

“We have a dog in active training in the society, and our on-campus walks with the retired greyhounds are important, it’s great to see that work being highlighted,” Joe concluded.