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    Greyhound Racing BRINGING SCHOOLS to the FARMS
    Posted byadmin on Friday, November 30 @ 00:23:00 EST
    Contributed by admin

       
    Learning about Raising

    Greyhounds

    As a Career


    By JILL PAXTON



       



    On October 10, 2007 Alan Hill hosted the Colo-Nesco Middle School for a Career day experience on a Greyhound Farm. Joined by Jill Paxton, from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship Horse and Dog Breeding Bureau, Alan welcomed twenty middle school students to his greyhound farm. Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, the Department of Agriculture, and the IGA hope to use this experience as a pilot project to build a plan for future educational opportunities for Iowa youth.



    Alan welcomed the students and began the day in his whelping facility where the students were able to see new born puppies. Alan and Jill explained to the students the work involved in the raising and racing of greyhounds. The students followed Alan from his whelping area to the kindergarten runs for the puppies who were eight weeks to three months of age. In the run, Alan showed them how to: handle the pups, administer wormer, and mark the puppies to be sure each puppy was done correctly. Later, the students moved to another run where, under the supervision of Alan and his staff, they were able to handle and mark the puppies after worming.



    Alan asked who the fastest runner in the group was. They all agreed it was Lindsey Eley. The rest of the group re-boarded the bus and followed Alan and Lindsey to the long runs. The long runs are 1000 feet long and house adult greyhounds who are three months of age and beyond.



    As they prepared for the match race, Alan had Lindsey stand in the mowed area outside one of the runs while in the nearby run his staff held Superior Radio Flyer, the greyhound puppy WHO Radio is following. Alan asked Lindsey how much of a head start she would like. Lindsey jogged about 100 feet down the run and stopped. Alan suggested she might want even more of a head start. Lindsey kept moving down the run looking back at Alan as if she couldn’t believe he really thought she should be that far away.



    When they were ready Jill called the race as Alan’s staff hand slipped Radio Flyer and Alan raced his truck down the far side of the runs. The students cheered as Lindsey sprinted down the grassy area and Radio Flyer flew past her as if she had been parked.



    As the day ended Alan and Jill reviewed with the students the daily work needed to support the puppies on the farm and the life the greyhounds would lead in the years ahead. Many of the students were interested in following the careers of the puppies they met that day on-line. Others wanted to know how they could find work on greyhound farms in their area. All of them thanked Alan Hill for taking the time to introduce them to the career possibilities afforded through greyhound farming in Iowa agriculture.



    If you are interested in having a member of the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Horse and Dog Bureau team up with a Greyhound Breeder in your area for a similar presentation in your schools, please contact Jill Paxton at the Department of Agriculture by phone at 515.281.7683 or e-mail at jill.paxton@idals.state.ia.us .



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