Happy Holidays to you, our Greyhound Friends of NC family! We’re proud to report that GFNC found new forever homes for 262 Greys in 2018, all thanks to your dedication and hard work. We are grateful for your generous financial support and the countless hours you have selflessly given to help our Greyhounds. 2018 was a banner year for Greyhound Friends and we are looking forward to the new year, especially the upcoming 15th anniversary of Mountain Hounds!
25 Years of Adoptions. This year, we were thrilled to celebrate our 25th year of Greyhound adoption. Since our founding in 1993, our staff and volunteers have placed more than 6,200 retired racing Greyhounds with loving families. Our $25 for 25 campaign was a smashing success with nearly 100 donors giving $25 or more to commemorate our silver anniversary. It’s not too late to participate! Donors making a gift before December 31st will receive this special anniversary decal.
Changes in Leadership. Please join me in thanking Amy Reynard for her eight years of service as the President of GFNC. In July, Amy stepped into the Vice President role and I was elected President by the Board. I adopted my first Greyhound in 2002 from GFNC, a beautiful little black girl named Jewel. For the last eight years, I have been a turnout volunteer and adoption counselor. I’m excited and honored to help further our mission of finding loving homes for Greyhounds going forward.
Hound Boutique. This year saw a transformation of the Hound Boutique, both at the kennel and online. The building previously known as the Hound Boutique has been removed and replaced with a brand new insulated shed. Kennel staff and volunteers no longer need to worry about encountering snakes or mice when they go inside for supplies! In addition, our online Hound Boutique makeover was completed and is bearing fruit – sales are up more than 100% compared with last year.
Digital Strategy. Several years ago, the Board took a close look at where volunteers were spending time and energy and what actually resulted in successful adoptions. Our conclusion what that a strategy focused on our digital presence was the most effective means of increasing awareness and reaching out to potential adopters. As a result, we have focused on improving our website, bolstering our social media presence and revamping our email newsletter in recent years. The results have been tremendous – we had a record number of adoptions in 2018 for the third consecutive year as shown in this chart.
Florida Racing Ban. This past November, the voters of Florida passed Amendment 13, which bans greyhound racing in that state after December 31, 2020. The Amendment allows racetrack owners to cease racing as early as January 1, 2019, but the largest tracks have announced that they plan to continue racing until the mandated deadline. For this reason, we do not believe there will be an immediate surge in the number of greyhounds needing adoptive homes in the coming year. Breeders, trainers, track operators and adoption groups are developing a national plan to ensure the safe, orderly transport and rehoming of Florida’s greyhounds over the next two years. We will share the details with you as we learn more.
Thank You! On behalf of the Board, we can’t thank you, our Greyhound Friends, enough for all your support over the past year. If not for you, we would not be able to continue to house and find homes for retired racing Greyhounds. Your funds support our efforts to house and feed our kennel guests and to educate the public about this special breed. As we close out another year, please consider making a tax-deductible donation towards our efforts. Have a happy holidays and a Greyt new year!
With warmest regards,
Malay Shah, President, GFNC