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Letter

Race dog injuries were minimized

October 16, 2008
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In your story on Question 3 ("Track owner in race to win ballot fight," Oct. 9), opponents of the Greyhound Protection Act made some misstatements that deserve a response.

Track lobbyist Glenn Totten claims "465,176 dogs ran" in Massachusetts from 2002 to 2006. This is completely false. To reach this inflated figure, Totten is counting the same dogs over and over dozens of times in an effort to minimize the serious injuries greyhounds suffer. The facts speak for themselves: According to state records, more than 800 greyhounds suffered injuries in that period, and 80 percent of those injuries were broken legs.

Meanwhile, dog track executive Gary Temple claims that greyhounds are let out "to run and exercise" five or six times a day. In fact, greyhounds are let out in groups four times a day for about 45 minutes, which leaves 20 hours spent in a cage. This is according to statements made by the industry that are on the tracks' own websites.

We are committed to making our case in favor of the Greyhound Protection Act using provable facts, and believe there is no place in this discussion for exaggeration or hyperbole. Apparently, dog track owners do not share this standard. We urge voters to look at the facts (www.ProtectDogs.org) and then ask a simple question: Would you treat your dog this way?

PAULA BLANCHARD, The Committee to Protect Dogs

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