NEW PATHWAYS SET TO ASSIST OWNERS & TRAINERS
An important change to Greyhound Racing Victoria’s (GRV) Greyhound Adoption Program (GAP) intake model will be introduced on Tuesday 3 June 2014 aimed at reducing the amount of time owners and trainers have to wait to get their greyhounds into GAP, and making the program more accessible for regional members.
The new intake model will see GAP staff travel once a month to the Bendigo, Geelong, and Sandown tracks for dedicated testing days, rounding out the four week rotation with an additional intake day held at the GAP kennels in Seymour. Testing days will be held on non-race days, with the first one scheduled for Monday 7 July 2014 (a summary of testing dates can be found below).
To book a greyhound in for one of the testing days, owners and trainers will now have to ring GAP to book their greyhounds a place – rather than putting them on the ‘waiting list’. Each individual will be allowed to book up to three greyhounds per session. It is advised that owners and trainers ensure they are aware of the times, dates and locations that bookings are being taken because there are limited spots available.
Once these positions are filled, owners and trainers will have to wait until the next month to book their greyhounds in at their preferred location and this will be done on a first-come first-serve basis (booking times can be found below).
This model has been designed to significantly reduce the waiting time for GAP and will be trialled for three months whereby a review of the success of the changed model, along with owner and trainer feedback will be conducted.
Summary of changes:
- Owners and trainers must ring GAP to book their greyhounds in for temperament testing at one of four locations – Bendigo, Geelong, Sandown or GAP.
- GAP staff will conduct temperament tests at these locations and take the successful greyhounds back to GAP’s Seymour headquarters on the same day.
- Greyhounds that are unsuccessful in their temperament test will need to be taken home by their owners. These greyhounds have the option to be tested again at a later date after some further training.
- Members must provide the details of the greyhound they will be entering into the program as the spot is non-transferrable.
- Only greyhounds that pass the temperament test will have to pay the entry fee for GAP, there will be no fee charged if the greyhound is unsuccessful.
Important information for owners/trainers:
To help prepare greyhounds for their test, it is important to familiarise them with what it takes to be a pet. Greyhounds that have been given time to adjust from racing life and that have had some life experience before they enter the program have been shown to have a better chance of passing their temperament test and finding a permanent home.
Some ways to prepare your greyhound before attending a GAP testing day:
- Ensure the greyhound has a current C5 vaccination (done in the last twelve months, and at least ten days prior to assessment).
- Afford the greyhound as much time out of work/away from racing as possible – the greater the time between stopping racing and being assessed, the more likely your greyhound is to pass.
- If you are able to do so safely, gradually expose the greyhound to other breeds of dog. Start with large dogs and work your way down. Dogs should always be on lead and the greyhound should always be muzzled during this socialisation.
- Where possible allow your greyhound some time in a home environment rather than the kennel environment. Let them spend time in a backyard environment and allow them some supervised access into the house to acclimatise them to a home environment.
- If the greyhound has never raced, make sure it can be handled. Greyhounds need to be able to walk on lead and be familiar to being in a car or trailer. If the greyhound has never been off your property, the more exposure you can give him to people other than yourself (both adults and children) the easier it will be for him to cope when he comes to GAP.
‘Adoption Ready’ Greyhounds:
Another important change at GAP has been the introduction of ‘Adoption Ready’ greyhounds. The staff at GAP will be identifying greyhounds that are ready-made pets that come into the program, making them available for immediate adoption.
Greyhounds that qualify as ‘Adoption Ready’ must have an exemplary temperament as determined by the experienced GAP staff. This new strategy has been implemented to help free up space in the kennels for more greyhounds, with those greys suitable for rehoming straight-away afforded the opportunity to move into their forever homes without the standard foster care period.
These changes have been introduced to streamline the booking process for GAP and reduce the time it takes for greyhounds to obtain a spot within the program. The planning process for these satellite tests has been ongoing since the announcement of $2.7 million of extra funding for animal welfare last year.
Members of the GRV and GAP staff have worked collaboratively on these important changes and member feedback is welcomed to improve the process.
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