About the shelter
Greyhound Adoption Program (GAP) helps retired racing greyhounds find loving homes. As the flagship program of Greyhound Racing Victoria, the program was expanded in 2015 in order to improve the rehabilitation and rehoming rates of former race dogs in Victoria with a significant increase in funding over the years.
Lifted from an interview conducted in 2015 with GRV’s Greyhounds Welfare Manager Dr. Linda Beer, she states that “growth in the amount of funding to the program is centred on providing more opportunities for trainer and owners to put their greyhounds into the program as well as the promotion of suitability of greyhounds as pets to the wider public, [and] expanding and improving the facilities at GAP’s dedicated kennel facility in Seymour.” As a result of new initiatives (which have been welcomed by both the public and the greyhound racing industry), GAP claims to have one of the highest records adopted in a single year in Victoria for consecutive years.
GAP’s purpose-built facility is located in the town of Seymour, just 90 minutes north of Melbourne’s CBD. To assist greyhound owners and trainers into entering their retired greyhounds easier into the program, GAP also conducts regular testing days off-site at some race tracks around the state. Before retired greyhounds can be adopted through the program, they undergo thorough assessments in temperament, behaviour, and health to ensure that they are safe around smaller animals and people, and are safe to go without a muzzle in public with an inexperienced owner. Some dogs that enter the program are adopted right away. Other pooches need to go through a period of foster care with one of the numerous volunteers around Victoria in order to assist former race hounds in their transition from racing and living in a kennel environment to living in a family home.
As one of the largest, well-funded organisations, Greyhound Racing Victoria also has its award-winning Prison Pet Partnership Program which sees inmates from two of Victoria’s minimum security prisons act as foster carers, with the dogs living in prison grounds for six weeks to undergo training and socialisation.
Greyhounds ready for adoption are matched with potential adopters to maximise the chances of matching with their forever home. Potential adopters are paired with greyhounds that are most likely to suit their expectations and situations. From 1 January 2019, greyhound muzzle laws were amended by the Victorian government, with greyhound pet owners now having the ability to walk their greyhounds in public without a muzzle. All racing greyhound owners are now expected to plan their “end of career” options for their greyhounds.
- Taking greyhounds from the track to the couch, GAP aims to find permanent and loving homes for dogs that have retired from racing.
- An initiative of Greyhound Racing Victoria, the program aims to educate the public in the benefits of adopting a retired race animal.
How you can help
Do you have a soft spot for these misunderstood animals who want nothing more than a soft bed and loving family? Join GAP’s network of dedicated volunteers and help them spread the word about greyhounds as pets and find forever homes for these animals. There are various volunteer-based roles available such as foster caring, engaging with the community, and assisting in enriching the lives of greyhounds by showing them some love. Apply online on their site! GAP also holds regular events every month such as adoption days, community days, and playgroups.