Monday, January 24, 2011

Wonderful Public Relations for the Greyhound Industry

While scanning the greyhound forums we found this wonderful thread posted on American Greyhounds and asked for permission to re-post - so here goes.

Anyone willing to help out feel free to send us comments and let's see if we can put a smile on the faces of some children.

courtesy of Leslie a Veteran Member of American Greyhounds

Hi all.  So I had this idea today...there is a bit of a story first. 

My eldest greyhound, Eddie (Last Hitter), is a therapy dog and has been for seven years.  For the past three, he and I have been going to Ronald McDonald House every Tuesday to visit with the kids and their families.  He's awesome at it.  Totally bomb proof.  Many kids are fascinated by him but today was exceptional.  At one point I had several kids ranging from 8 years old to 14.  We started like usual - he's so funny looking!  Look at his pointy nose!  His tail is so long and boney!  I can see through the skin on his ankle!  They were a bright bunch of kids.  I started to talk about how fast he and his greyhound friends could go.  I had my computer, and I couldn't find anything quickly on YouTube that didn't have a greyhound live coursing (I didn't want to talk about the bunnies) so I switched over to trackinfo and let them watch one of the greyhounds I'm keeping track of, Brenda Fricker.  I explained that the dogs were going to shoot out of the box and chase after a stuffed toy.  They all were amazed at the beauty of the dogs running and how fast.  I explained some people like to watch and go to the tracks like a football game.  It is a sport but the dogs love to run.  One of the little girls who had just come in from Chemo said that maybe she'll ask to go to a greyhound race for her Make A Wish...or maybe ask for a havanese (she is only 8 yrs old :)

So it got me thinking.  Ronald McDonald is a great charity that reaches out to thousands of people.  It is a great cause and a real wonderful program.  They do a great job marketing.  Lots of sports atheletes and tv stars come and visit.  They donate.  What would happen if a breeder or owner donated a racer greyhound to a Ronald McDonald House...say in Florida.... The kids that were staying in the house got to name the hound.  Then, in the same venue as Race For Adoption, all proceeds go to that RM House?  If it were to race well in Florida near where the House is...some visits could take place.  Some well positioned press releases... some charity campaigning from the track... attendance might go up for those races,purses and points go up, right? ... invite some local celebrities... (maybe sports atheletes to do some photo shoots with the hounds...) The kids win - The dog might win - The industry does some visible good (wins some warm fuzzy points).... Educate more people about how awesome these dogs are...both on and off the track....

And, in the end, if it were the right dog, a volunteer could do some basic training (sit, down, stay stuff) and I could fly down and certify the dog as a Therapy Dog.  He/She could then be placed in a PRO RACING adoption center (more media for adoption), placed in a home that someone wants to do therapy work at Ronald McDonald (media for the therapy non-profit) ...the dog could continue to visit weekly... 

Hmmm...crazy idea but it could work...  I know it would totally fly here in Seattle but to do it right there has to be a race track and controversy (possibility of tracks closing).  I can't write a press release to save my life, but we do have some talented writers in this industry....

Always out there...
Leslie

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