The West Virginia dog racing industry has an extensive history of animal welfare problems. Since 2007 the state has issued rulings in more than 800 disciplinary cases, including over 100 drug violations and 19 cases related to animal abuse or neglect. Rulings include multiple cases of licensees hitting greyhounds, a broken-legged greyhound who did not receive medical treatment for days, and poor kennel conditions.1
Drugs are also systemically used to increase racing profits. For example, female greyhounds are routinely given methyltestosterone, an anabolic steroid, to prevent a loss of race days. This performance enhancing drug is prohibited in other dog racing jurisdictions, but continues in West Virginia.2
Finally, greyhounds are fed raw “4-D” meat from dying, diseased, disabled and dead animals. This meat is used to reduce costs, despite the serious health problems known to be associated with it.3
In the United States, female greyhounds are routinely given an anabolic steroid, Methyltestosterone, to prevent a loss of race days.4
Methyltestosterone is a performance-enhancing drug, and by definition makes muscles larger.5 Medical experts around the world have raised integrity6 and welfare7 concerns regarding Methyltestosterone and other anabolic steroids.
During legislative testimony in 2017, the Florida Greyhound Association stated that the primary drug now used by greyhounds is Methyltestosterone. Half of all female greyhounds are being administered anabolic steroids.8
The practice of administering Methyltestosterone to greyhounds is banned in Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.9
When South Tuscon, Arizona voters considered the issue of anabolic steroid injection in greyhounds, the law passed, with the support of over 100 Tuscon-area veterinary professionals.10
West Virginia greyhounds are still given anabolic steroids, including Methyltestosterone, despite expert opinion that has prompted international racing jurisdictions to transition away from using them.
The US greyhound industry uses this dangerous drug because it is cheap, and because it is unwilling to change.
Learn more about dog racing in West Virginia:
05/18/2023: Charleston Gazette-Mail - Could greyhound racing in WV be on its last legs?
02/27/2023: PlayWV - West Virginia Casinos, The Only Option For Greyhound Racing
02/09/2023: WBOY 12 - West Virginia is the only state with active greyhound racing
01/18/2023: PlayWV.com - West Virginia’s The Only State To Offer Greyhound Racing, For Now
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