New England has been named a new point for greyhound adoption as part of a program expansion from the sport's governing body.
The announcement follows the release of data that revealed more than 2000 dogs had been rehomed in the last seven months.
In detailing the record rehoming numbers, GRNSW CEO Tony Mestrov also announced a major expansion of the Greyhounds As Pets program into regional NSW – with six adoption regions to be established across the state.
“The industry is on track to exceed all rehoming targets set out in the GRNSW 2018-2021 Strategic Plan, which is the culmination of the industry’s turnaround over the past few years,” he said.
“The latest figures are exceptional and clearly show the rehoming initiatives and programs are working.
“Since July 1, a total of 816 greyhounds have been rehomed through their owners, which in part can be attributed to the improvements in our Owners’ Incentive Scheme, while 1,269 dogs have been rehomed to a third party outside the industry, either via their owners, or through Greyhounds as Pets and similar rehoming organisations.”
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The aim of the OIS is to support participants who would like to keep their greyhounds as pets or rehome them to family or friends once their racing careers are over, with the scheme now providing funding for a greyhound to be desexed, have any minor dental work done, and have booster vaccinations carried out.
Mr Mestrov said the GAP program had undergone an operational restructure after a review, and now focuses on achieving complete rehoming for all greyhounds involved in the industry.
The review has led to several new staff appointments and a strategic push into regional NSW to establish a more effective adoption network.
“The new regional GAP programs are an important step for the industry’s overall rehoming success," Mr Mestrov said.
"With more than 70 per cent of our participants outside the city, we are building a better rehoming pathway for all greyhounds in these areas - whether they race or not - and uniquely connecting regional owners and trainers, with their dogs’ adopters.
“Now we are able to announce that similar regional GAP programs will this year be introduced in another four regional areas: the Riverina, the Western Districts, the Hunter and in the New England region."
With the regional GAP program, instead of having to attend a facility, prospective new owners can lodge an application, and are then matched with a greyhound to their specific needs from the greyhounds listed with the Regional GAP programs.