PROTESTS against greyhound racing in Swindon have sparked plenty of debate on social media.  

Activists from the Stop Swindon Greyhound Racing group last week expressed their concerns over the welfare of greyhounds, calling for racing to be banned in Swindon.

The news has divided opinions on the Adver's Facebook, with users denying those allegations.

Dominique Hamblin said: “They want to educate themselves. The dogs are happy and healthy, and most go on to have happy homes after they’ve finished racing.”

Alan Thurgood commented: “It’s been going on for years, they are well healthy dogs. The dogs burn their energy on the track. They love it, why ban it?”

READ MORE: Protesters want greyound racing banned in Swindon

And Ashley Blacker added: “It’s in the dog’s nature and their breed to run. Every breed of dog has its purpose such as hunting, swimming or chasing, it’s what they do. If they don’t want to run, then they won’t.”

A spokesman for the stadium responded to those accusations, stating that dogs are checked by vets before and after each race.

But out of the 155 comments, some of them were supporting the protests, highlighting the dangers of dog racing.

Marc Harris said on Facebook: “I have homed several retired racing greyhounds, all of whom have the most loving easiest retirement ever. But these are the lucky few that get that far.

“So many hounds just disappear, many are injured and put to sleep and many die on the track. I for one do not support any form of sport involving animals and to see it ended would be fantastic.”

Sarah Shearman added: “They have my support by not contributing towards this sport. Anyone who thinks this is fun is condoning animal cruelty.”

The Greyhound Board of Great Britain revealed that more than 1,000 pets were killed in 2017 for various reasons including the cost of veterinary treatment.

Rachael Cordy has a rescue greyhound and she said on Facebook: “The rescue she [greyhound] came from sees the terrified dogs that come from the tracks, many with burns, chopped off ears and a fear of raised hands and men.

“Along with other rescues, they also took on dogs from the recently closed Macau canidrome racetrack in China, saving the lives and securing the future of around 600 greyhounds. Pets, no bets.”

And some have even changed their opinions on greyhound racing.

Sinéad Smyth said: “I used to go to the dog races oblivious to what goes on behind the scenes. I’d never go again, thank you guys for supporting those that haven’t got a voice to support themselves.”

Stop Swindon Greyhound Racing demonstrates every Saturday to raise awareness at the Abbey Stadium from 6pm to 7.15pm.