Confinement issues: A recurring problem at Greyhound Friends
One of the first things that disturbed us when we began learning about the problems at Greyhound Friends was that the organization was confining some dogs in small travel crates. The Association of Shelter Veterinarians stated in its guide to humane sheltering, "cages or crates intended or short-term temporary confinement or travel are unacceptable as primary enclosures and are cruel if used as such."
Greyhound Friends dogs kept living in crates
There have been numerous complaints over the years of Greyhound Friends keeping dogs living in crates that were too small, as shown in recently released records by the Town of Hopkinton and the animal control officer.
Former Greyhound Friends staff and volunteers speak out
A former Greyhound Friends volunteer also observed that “many dogs [at Greyhound Friends] were housed for extended periods of time (weeks or even months) in vari kennels, the type of kennel you would use to ship a dog in an airplane. The vari kennels were too small for greyhounds. Many times, the dogs would whine and shake when they had to go back in after a potty break. Someone would have to literally force many of the dogs back in."
"Sometimes vari kennel were stacked on top of one another...There were times when two dogs were in one cage at a time...Most days, the dogs spent 23 1/2 hours a day in their kennel or cage.”
A former Greyhound Friends staff member was also disturbed by how Greyhound Friends was confining dogs. In a letter to the Hopkinton Board of Selectmen, she recalled, “The main kennel was alway lined with metal fold-up crates and vari-kennels to house more dogs. The [crates] were far too small for the tall stature of greyhounds. The dogs’ backs would hit the top as they went in and out of the crate, which is why many refused to go in and would have to be forcefully be put in there. These crates are not meant to be lived in, only for temporary confinement and for traveling.”
Inspection again finds Greyhound Friends confining dogs in small crates
These problems cropped up again in 2016, with Greyhound Friends confining multiple dogs in a small medical recovery room. In early 2017, Greyhound Friends was caught with two dogs living in crates that were too small for them.