Greyhounds in Florida have been pushed into early retirement after racing tracks closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Awesome Greyhound Adoptions, an adoption nonprofit for retired greyhounds, announced it is seeking adopters and foster homes on its Facebook.
“The virus has caused early shut down of two tracks and these dogs need places to go while waiting for forever homes, NOW IS THE TIME TO STEP UP FLORIDA PEEPS,” the organization wrote.
Dog racing was scheduled to continue in Florida through December and become illegal in Florida in 2021.
In 2018, Florida voters passed ballot measure Amendment 13 — which banned commercial dog racing with gambling. Four of the state’s 11 dog racing tracks closed at the time, WTLV reported.
Of the remaining dog tracks, Daytona Beach Racing and Card Club and Sanford Orlando Kennel Club permanently closed greyhound racing over COVID-19, WPEC reported. A spokesperson for the Palm Beach Kennel Club told the outlet that it would re-open for dog racing as soon as it’s safe to do so until the end of the year.
Carolee Ellison, the lead trainer at Awesome Greyhound Adoptions, told WJXT that she expects more than 5,000 greyhounds will need a forever home by December.
More than 40 greyhounds have already been shipped out to New England — but there are more than 950 racing dogs still in Jacksonville alone, a Florida Greyhound Association representative told the outlet.
Greyhound racing has also shut down across the pond, onlinegambling.com reported.
The Greyhound Board of Great Britain canceled all racing in the UK after Boris
More New Yorkers have been trying to adopt pets in recent weeks to help relieve stress during the pandemic, The Post reported Monday.