Greyhound Abuse Exposed in Florida...Again

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Greyhound Abuse Exposed in Florida...Again

From WEARTV.com
April 2010

"I know when I worked for her, there was some weeks we had real bad weeks and she just barely got the food."

A National Greyhound Protection Agency is calling it one of the worst cases of neglect they've ever seen.

And it cost an Escambia County woman her license to own and operate a Kennel at the Pensacola Greyhound Track.


(Photo: John Tlumacki)

The State Department of Business and Professional Regulation initiated an investigation into Billie Ard... The owner of W.R. Etheredge Kennel at the track... After someone from the Emerald Coast Chapter of Greyhound Pets of America called in a tip that Ard had neglected and euthanized over 20 dogs.

Investigators from the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering reported that they found evidence that Billie Ard's greyhounds had been underfed, her kennels were unclean... And that her neglect caused her to euthanize 22 of her dogs.

"I don't know who said this, but, I'll say a prayer for them."

Michael Mccoy is a former employee of Billie Ard... Who says he doesn't believe some of the state's findings against her.

But the entries made by investigators are more than troubling.

One reads: "Upon entering the kennel it was apparent from the overwhelming urine smell… that the bedding materials in the crates had not been cleaned in quite some time. The smell was so strong and overwhelming that it burned the eyes."

They noted that the dogs also appeared to be underfed.

"I know when I worked for her, there was some weeks we had real bad weeks and she just barely got the food."

Investigators say the situation hit a crisis point in August of 2009.

That's when a local Veterinarian euthanized the dogs, because he felt they were being severely underfed.

"This might be, the most severe case of animal neglect, we have seen in the dog racing industry."

But Carey Theil of the National Greyhound P-rotection Group "Grey2k" says Ard... Shouldn't be the only one to face a penalties.

"This severe case of animal neglect calls into question the ability of track management to monitor the health and welfare of dogs at their facility."

Despite losing her license, Billie Ard will not face any criminal charges because Escambia County Animal Control elected not to investigate the matter... Even though the state alerted them to the problem.

All of the dogs that were still in the Ard's care at the time of the investigation, have since been placed with other kennels or adopted out.