Horse and dog welfare to benefit from NZRB funding

19 February 2019

A dog ambulance for Palmerston North Greyhound Racing and part funding of five horse ambulances are among the initiatives awarded funding by the New Zealand Racing Board’s (NZRB) Animal Welfare fund announced today.

In total, more than $47k was awarded to Greyhound Racing New Zealand (GRNZ), New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing (NZTR) and Harness Racing New Zealand (HRNZ) as part of the industry fund established in 2016 to improve the quality of animal welfare in New Zealand racing.  

Ian Long, NZRB Head of Public Affairs said the funding would provide immediate benefit for animal welfare.

“Animal welfare is of paramount importance and the fund provides tangible benefit and supports the industry’s welfare priorities. These three initiatives will make a real difference.”

 In the recent  round of applications, $12,795 in funding was provided to Greyhound Racing New Zealand (GRNZ) for the purchase of a dog ambulance for the Palmerston North Club at Manawatu Raceway.

The vehicle will act to provide immediate assistance to a greyhound, should it be injured during the course of a race. It will also allow the trainer to travel alongside the dog, mitigating the risk of injury posed by carrying it to the on-course vet.

Funding of $30,000 was also granted for the remaining costs of construction of five custom built horse ambulances. The fleet of ambulances will be equipped with emergency recovery equipment that will assist with the provision of critical care in emergency situations, and alleviate distress to the injured horse. The first ambulance was launched in Christchurch in November, and latest grant from the NZRB Animal Welfare Fund will mean another four can be rolled out across the country.

A joint application was made by NZTR and HRNZ for the development of a functional database for recording and reporting of injuries incurred by racehorses. The Equine Race Injury Database will look to automate the linking of injury events to horse records on NZTR and HRNZ databases, thus improving the understanding of patterns of raceday injuries of racehorses. Funding of $4,400 was allocated for the further scoping of the project.

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