QRIC Blooper Puts Rehoming Of Dogs At Risk

A bureaucratic blooper has put the cornerstone of Queensland’s Greyhound Adoption Program at risk, with 100 dogs potentially looking for a new home.

A bureaucratic blooper has put the cornerstone of Queensland's Greyhound Adoption Program (GAP) at risk, with up to 100 dogs potentially looking for a new home.

Run by the Queensland Racing Integrity Commission, the GAP rehomes retired greyhounds around the state once they have finished their racing careers.

QRIC currently leases a purpose-built greyhound facility to house and re-educate retired dogs at Churchable, 100km west of Brisbane. However, there are fears the property will be sold off, despite the state government having a contract to buy it last year.

Through Racing Minister Grace Grace, Racing Queensland was set to buy the Churchable property for a seven-figure price tag under previous RQ chief executive Brendan Parnell, however the purchase also required the signature of QRIC commissioner Shane Gillard.

Sources confirmed the property was set to be sold to RQ last year before Gillard pulled out, torpedoing the deal which would have seen it become state-owned, instead opting to continue leasing it.

It has since been confirmed to Racenet that a new interstate buyer, who intends to use it as a private training facility, is interested in buying the 20-acre property.

Queensland Racing Integrity commissioner Shane Gillard pulled out of the purchase of the Churchable property.

Such a move could have QRIC kicked off the property and leave the GAP without a primary southeast Queensland residence.

Asked specifically why Gillard would not be a signatory to the Churchable deal, a QRIC spokeswoman provided a statement.

QRIC also did not answer questions about when their lease is set to expire.

"The Queensland Racing Integrity Commission oversees the Greyhound Adoption Program," the spokeswoman said.

"The GAP is dedicated to rehoming greyhounds that have retired from racing. This financial year to date, the GAP has successfully rehomed 335 retired greyhounds.

"The GAP is facilitated across various locations in Queensland, including the current facility located at Churchable. The Churchable facility is licensed to support 100 greyhounds and there are currently 84 greyhounds awaiting rehoming.

"Consistent with statutory powers, QRIC enters into contracts and agreements required to support operations, including leases over commercial properties. Generally, when a property subject to a commercial lease is sold, tenancy arrangements will remain in place."

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It highlights a growing rehoming issue in the greyhound industry, with an increase in supply and a post-Covid cooling in the market for pet dogs raising fears.

Sources believe an increase in the amount of dogs that come north to Queensland from southern states at the tail end of their career is contributing to the issue and further straining the program in Queensland.

On their website, QRIC describes the Churchable property as "purpose built", which allows greyhounds to adapt to "day-to-day challenges of transitioning to pet life" while the large outdoor spaces allow the dogs to "practise their daily zoomies".

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