WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. (WMC) - Greyhound racing is going to be phased out at Soutland Casino Racing in Arkansas.
The live racing will be reduced over the next few years with the racing coming to an end before 2023.
Southland Casino Racing and the Arkansas Greyhound Kennel Association came to the agreement, which will reduce the races from 6,656 in 2019 to 4,992 in 2020, down to 3,994 in 2021, and to 2,662 in 2022, with the final race coming by December 2022.
Greyhound racing remains legal in only six states, including Florida, which has legislation in place to end it by 2021.
“The kennel association and Southland agreed that given these factors we needed an agreement that would provide certainty and clarity for the future by ending live racing via an orderly process and on our own terms,” said David Wolf, president and general manager of Southland Casino Racing.
The phase out will allow time for the adoption of the 1,200 greyhounds that currently race at Southland. The Mid-South Greyhound Adoption Option will work to bring the retired racing greyhounds into new homes.
"We knew it was coming, and we knew it was only a matter of time. We saw the news release and I didn't realize it was going to be that quick. It's unfortunate in that a lot of breeders and trainers and the dogs themselves are going to be out of work,” said Rick Chetter, Mid-South Greyhound Adoption Option president.
Rick Chetter is president of Mid-South Greyhound Adoption Option. He owns a Greyhound and he says there are already people lining up to adopt the dogs.
Southland has had live greyhound racing since opening in 1956.