Hydration of Greyhounds
With the hot weather set to continue, GBGB has today issued a reminder to all trainers and tracks to ensure that greyhounds have unrestricted access to clean drinking water at all times.
As those working across the sport will be aware, dehydration in a greyhound is a contributory factor in under-performance, cramping and can cause elevated potassium levels in blood which can increase the risk of heart failure.
Dr Simon Gower, GBGB’s Veterinary Director, said:
“Dehydration is easily avoidable but it is essential that we are all aware of its potential and take the right steps to avoid it. If you are hot, think how your greyhound would be, so encourage plenty of fresh, clean water intake.”
Under the Rules of Racing, tracks must ensure that clean drinking water is always available in the paddock area. Clean drinking vessels should be supplied by either the trainer or the racecourse. A suitable quantity of water (min 500ml) must be placed with the greyhound in its race kennel following its veterinary inspection.
Following its race, each greyhound should be given the opportunity to take clean drinking upon returning to the paddock and a suitable quantity of water should be placed in the kennel with the greyhound when returning to its race kennel.
Fluids must also be freely available to greyhounds before any journey. For journeys longer than three hours, or where the temperatures are above 20°C, a watering stop shall be scheduled into the journey.
Dr Gower added:
“It is essential to carry an adequate supply of water and drinking containers, in case of delay or breakdown. Trainers should also make themselves familiar with the Hot Weather Policy, which can be found within the Rules and Regulation section at www.gbgb.org.uk.”
Trainers can apply for GBGB assistance funding towards the cost of providing suitable water bowl holders through the GBGB Trainers’ Assistance Fund and should contact their stipendiary steward for an application form.