It’s been a tough week for “small-time” greyhound breeder trainer and maintenance man at The Meadows, David Pryse.
Last Tuesday, Pryse received a phone call from his wife, who was “absolutely hysterical”. She informed him that she couldn’t get home because the roads into their hometown of Benloch (near Lancefield) had been blocked due to fire danger.
With two greyhounds – Patch and Demi – at home alone panic set in, and as such David headed towards home only to have his vehicle stopped at the road block by police.
It took some convincing, but Pryse talked the police into driving him home because he felt that the pups “had some chance of survival if I was at home, but if I wasn’t they had no hope.”
“They’re more than just dogs to me…they’re like family, especially because I bred them myself.”
Without a car, Pryse was stranded at home, refusing to leave his greyhounds until the fire was contained two days later.
“It (the fire) was moving like a tornado with ambers flying everywhere and at one stage it was within 50 metres of my doorstep.”
“It (the fire) came close. It was moving like a tornado with ambers flying everywhere and at one stage it was within 50 metres of my doorstep. My closest neighbour lost three or four sheds, while a house in the next street was burned down,” he said.
“A CFA rep said I was just lucky the wind changed as that was the only thing that saved my property. He told me not to bother buying a lottery ticket this week because I had used up all my luck already.”
After such a petrifying experience, Pryse is hopeful that litter sisters Patch and Demi (Glen Gallon x Damika), with whom he is pictured above, can turn things around.
“This is the first litter I’ve bred and they are showing a little bit of promise. They are 18 months old and I haven’t organised race names for them yet, but I’m hoping they can have a little bit of success once they hit the racetrack.”
No one would begrudge the Pryse family of that.