Meet Millie the greyhound puppy.
She was handed in to Greyhound Rescue at 11 weeks old with an infected leg. Volunteer Jessica Crause, who has followed her journey, suspects Millie’s foot was stood on or she was attacked by another dog in the first few weeks of her life.
“The vets had to cut off her paw, it was so bad,” Ms Crause tells Mamamia.
Thanks to the kindness of strangers, $5000 was raised for Millie’s care — and two years ago, she became the first Australian dog to have a prosthetic leg.
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Many greyhound dogs begin life within the greyhound racing industry, and are either put down after their careers, or given to vets to be “blooded” — a term that means that because greyhounds have a universal blood type, vets keep their blood on hand for transfusions.
This week, an ABC Four Corners report revealed shocking footage of trainers abusing racing dogs to optimise their success on the field. The horrific scenes included dogs mauling live small animals in training.
But luckily for hounds like Millie, foster and adoption programs are in place to find new homes for greyhounds who would have otherwise been surrendered to the needle once rendered useless by the racing industry. Each year, over 200 dogs are handed in to Greyhound Rescue by trainers and vets.
“These dogs make me get out of bed in the morning, I love them so much,” Ms Crause tells Mamamia.
“I would say that greyhounds are one of the easiest breeds to care for and I hear this all the time from families who foster and adopt them.”
She adds that they can even live with smaller pets, and most of the greyhounds fostered live among other fostered dogs. Millie, for example, loves to snuggle up to rabbits and cats, and children in her home. And she’s never even bitten a soul.
Ms Crause says: “She’s so happy, and her adoptive parents love her to bits. We just want our greyhounds to have the best chance in life.”