For those of you who think of yourselves as animal protectors but haven't followed this issue, let me give you just a little background.
- Dog racing is cruel. Dogs suffer horrible injuries and don't get out of their cages except to race. If the dogs don't win, they are killed.
- Dog racing loses money. Dog racing in West Virginia survives for two reasons - both of which the 2015 legislature can remedy: (1) $86 million in subsidies and (2) a state law that requires casinos to offer live animal racing, too. The casinos would gladly close their dog racing tracks if the WV legislature would allow them to provide casino gambling without the live animal racing.
To the members of the 2015 legislature who told me on the phone that I can count on you to vote for animal protection legislation: it'll never be easier for you to prove it than it is now. It's right for the dogs and for WV taxpayers to let dog racing die. All you have to do is end the $86 million subsidy to dog racing and then repeal the law that requires casinos to also provide live animal racing.
Here's the link to Phil Kabler's column: http://www.wvgazette.com/article/20141207/ARTICLE/141209449
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