AROUND 18,000 greyhounds are discarded by the Australian greyhound racing industry each year, and a group is calling for them to be turned into shoes.
Gone are the Dogs, a group against greyhound mistreatment, said they spoke to a tannery in Queensland who confirmed that dogs can be tanned and their skins made into leather products.
"From an average size greyhound about two pairs of shoes can be made," they said.
"Given that the priority of the greyhound racing industry bodies and state governments is profit above everything else, it's surprising neither have come up with this idea before.
"When you consider you can sell a quality pair of leather shoes for $100 - $300 pair and around 18,000 dogs are killed per year - well that amount of money is nothing to bark at.
"When you know that 40% of greyhounds are simply bred to be killed (because they don't even get to race) it seems kind of sick not to make a quick buck from their deaths."
The group press release further states: "Why toss them in a mass pit when you could be wearing these cute dogs on your feet?
"Have you felt greyhound skin? It is fine and soft.
"The industry and our state governments are remiss not seeing this opportunity - they could be using luxurious doggy skin to make shoes, handbags and wallets.
"They could even make sports shoes and it might even make athletes run faster! Most greyhounds have scars and gouges from their many falls - these markings will make all greyhound shoes unique. There is a silver lining in every race track crash."
The group stated that a better alternative to greyhound shoes, was to stop the industry.
"We recognise that times have changed," Gone are the Dogs said.
"We recognise that our attitudes towards animals have changed.
"We recognise that our society is no longer willing to accept the situation where animals are being bred simply so we can bet on them and then kill them.
"That dogs are our best friend and we need to treat them as such.
"That compassion is an innately good quality and one that we want to encourage in people - not the killing and maiming of animals for our entertainment.
"We get our state and territory governments to put aside money from betting to save greyhounds. To take responsibility for this vile industry which they have allow to fester and grow in our society.
"We put aside money for people in the industry to have vocational re-training."
"Then we shut it down.
"People will keep betting, but surely they can bet on humans - at least humans have a choice and they are not killed when they finish."
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