Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Mirror Mirror.........

A few weeks ago I had the privilege to discuss greyhound adoption efforts with adoption officers from another country.  It was a privilege to convey to them my experience of running local adoption programs and also a National organization for 17 years then top it off with my current views/experience as a regulator.
Watching the first storm of the monsoon season roll through the Valley of the Sun I thought about my discussion with them regarding home visits and how that came about. We hear the term often in greyhound adoption but many may not realize how it came to be.

Years ago a person adopted a couple of greyhounds.  This was back in the day when we tried to move as many as we could; we knew we couldn’t get them all. The group that adopted these greyhounds out happened to be in the neighborhood of the adopter and thought, hey let’s stop in and see how the greyhounds are adapting.  As it turns out the address was bogus and with a little further investigation it was found out that the adopter just acquired the greyhounds so they could sell them for research.

The term “home visit” was from that point on a term that would live forever within the greyhound community. It started out as a way to protect the greyhounds and grew into a tool to help determine the suitability of a home and match the right greyhound for the home.

Over the years the community has grown and done many things to protect the greyhounds, but one item is severely lacking – the checks on ourselves.

We’ve concentrated so much on the greyhounds that we forgot to look in the mirror. We automatically accept an individual with an adopted greyhound as a good person without knowing anything about them. We "know" them from reading about them on the internet or they are our "friends" because they are in some way a part of the greyhound community. Yet they are also convicted rapists or convicted child molesters or have life time sex offender registration. If we had paid just as much attention to ourselves as we do potential adopters these disgusting individuals would have not been able to weasel themselves into our community and use the good will of our community to prop themselves up and solicit praise. Committing serious and heinous crimes against women and children is not the norm and should never be brushed under the carpet in exchange for having adopted a greyhound.

Something to consider - if during a home check it was found out that the adopter was a convicted child molester or someone with lifetime sex offender registration, would you place a greyhound with such an individual, knowing the percentage and likelihood that such types assault animals? If you said no, would you also continue to welcome and condone such individual’s participation in our family friendly community being next to children, women and yes even be near our dogs? Over the years many have found fault with the greyhound racing industry and with some of the individuals involved with it, but do you even think for once a convicted child molester would easily get a license to train greyhounds or operate a kennel having to go thru state background checks and licensing procedures?

It is time the community takes a look in the mirror and gets serious about ourselves the same we do about potential adopters.

1 comment:

  1. I wish all sexual predators had stricter rules and far less rights. They don't deserve any protection, rights or anonymity. We all know they never change.