Cowering greyhounds are herded into a cramped truck on a British road – destined for a horrific fate in China.
Shocking video evidence has been obtained by the Mirror which points to a disturbing UK link to the sickening dog meat trade that we exposed yesterday.
The pedigree racing dogs are sent from Ireland through Wales and England to Heathrow, bound for race tracks in the East.
Rita James from pressure group CagedNW said: Greyhounds are being taken over to China to race every day.
Once there, many of the dogs are believed to be housed in appalling conditions, living in misery and pain until their racing career is over.
Then they face being killed for their meat at markets in China – even being boiled alive, as the Mirror showed yesterday.
Today our video shows 24 dogs being transferred to a removal truck in Cheshire, after arriving from Ireland at Holyhead.
The truck had been followed from the port to Lymm, where it stopped on a side road.
The dogs were filmed being transferred to a vehicle which fell way short of regulations required for the transport of greyhounds, said animal rights activists.
There was a complete lack of ventilation and dogs were kept in shoddy crates which were not secured.
The animals had clearly gone without water. Police were called but waved the vehicle on, powerless to stop it.
At one point one of the men transferring the animals threatens the camerman when he realises he is being filmed.
But at Heathrow airport, the greyhounds were prevented from travelling to Hong Kong at the Animal Reception Centre.
Staff were horrified by the conditions the dogs were being kept in. They were later sent back to Ireland.
International animal experts say the explosion in illegal greyhound racing, coupled with the insatiable appetite for dog meat, is fuelling a massive boom in dogs being taken to South Asia.
They are sent to India and Pakistan as well as China, say activists.
Ms James, whose group uncovered the evidence and shot the video, added: These dogs are being slaughtered as soon as they lose a race and, for some, in the most horrific way possible.
They are often beaten and tortured to death, before being sold as dog meat.
And it is now feared that hundreds of tragic dogs are making the same journey from the UK.
But British authorities have limited powers to stop the sickening trade. The Greyhound Board of Great Britain agreed that the growing demand for racing greyhounds in South East Asia is becoming a huge problem.
And they shared the Mirror’s concerns that the dogs were being kept in terrible conditions before their fate is sealed.
A spokesman said: We are aware that certain jurisdictions in the world are finding it increasingly difficult to source greyhounds for racing or breeding purposes. Some of these jurisdictions have animal welfare standards which are unverified.
Unconfirmed reports suggest that greyhounds exported to these countries are denied basic welfare rights.
Whilst the GBGB recognises that it is not illegal to export greyhounds to such locations, it strongly recommends that exports are only made to countries with a recognised welfare standard, structured around strong legislation.
The Government is to debate the issue in Parliament on Monday after a petition gathered 100,000 signatures to debate the increasing problem of dog meat available in South Korea.
Oliver Dowden MP, a member of the Petitions Committee, said: I’m deeply concerned for the welfare of dogs throughout South East Asia and it is right that the British public should be worried.
If dogs are being transported from Britain to end up in the dog meat industry that is particularly distressing and the appropriate action should be taken at the earliest opportunity.
Eduardo Goncalves, chief executive for the League Against Cruel Sports, said: As long as the UK government continues to let the greyhound industry police itself, there is always the possibility UK dogs will experience horrific cruelty like this.
We know that greyhounds are often callously discarded here, once they have outlived their usefulness.
While many are rehomed in the UK, a significant number are unaccounted for. Many will be euthanised and some are sold into laboratory research.
But others may well be exported to foreign tracks, living miserable lives before suffering gruesome deaths.
The League Against Cruel Sports is calling for an independent regulator for the greyhound racing industry, a robust tracking system and complete transparency in rehoming and injury statistics.
The Irish Greyhound Board faces a similar loss of control over what happens to the dogs once they leave Ireland.
A spokesman said: The wellbeing of greyhounds, including their physical and social environment, is at the core of Ireland’s greyhound industry.
The board is committed to working to ensure adherence to any regulatory and statutory protection for greyhounds, and for the relevant authorities to take appropriate stringent action against those who fail to do so.
Peter J Li, China policy specialist at the Humane Society International, said that the organisation had witnessed greyhounds on the dog trucks bound for the slaughterhouses.
The Mirror’s footage of one greyhound’s death in a boiling pot at a market was met with horror around the world.
Mr Li added: “The brutal live boiling of the dog is shocking. The fact that the dog was boiled alive in public and watched by people including young children was a serious offence and a violation of China’s youth protection law.
It is hard to determine if the dog was an imported greyhound from Ireland or even Australia.
The possibility cannot be excluded. It is important Ireland and Australia stop sending dogs in China.
Up to 20 million dogs are killed for their meat every year in China alone. Many are raised on industrial farms but huge numbers of family pets are stolen to fuel the massive industry.
Last year about 16,000 dogs and cats, 400 horses, 200,000 reptiles, 2,000 birds and 28 million fish were processed through the Animal Reception Centre at Heathrow airport.
In Britain charities like the Retired Greyhound Trust care for hundreds of greyhounds, patiently waiting for someone to give them the retirement they deserve.
Up to 20 million dogs are killed for their meat every year in China alone.
Many of the dogs are raised on industrial farms but huge numbers of family pets are stolen to fuel the massive industry.
Last year 16,000 dogs and cats, 400 horses, 200,000 reptiles, 2000 birds and 28 million fish were processed through the Animal Reception Centre at Heathrow airport.
In Britain charities like the Retired Greyhound Trust care for hundreds of greyhounds patiently waiting for someone to give them the retirement they deserve.
News Source MirrorNews