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Afghan hounds pound Romford track to raise money for retired greyhounds

PUBLISHED: 13:18 04 August 2016 | UPDATED: 13:50 04 August 2016

Afghan Hounds racing at Romford Dogs to support the Romford Greyhound Owners Association

Afghan Hounds racing at Romford Dogs to support the Romford Greyhound Owners Association

Archant

They’re more commonly associated with Crufts, but the flowing locks of Afghan hounds were spotted in Romford last Saturday, as six dogs raced around the greyhound stadium.

The pedigree pooches might not be as fast as their fleeter-footed cousins, the greyhounds, but the shaggy dogs can still reach up to 30 miles an hour in a race.

The annual charity fundraising night was held at the stadium, in London Road, Romford, last Saturday, in support of retired greyhounds.

Sheila Fox, committee member at Romford Greyhound Owners Association (RGOA), said the night was a massive success.

She said: “The Afghans looked absolutely amazing – they were lolloping around the track!

“We raised £3,541 for the association, which was a fantastic figure.

“The crowd absolutely loved watching them race, it was the highlight of the night.

“After the race was over, one of the dogs decided he didn’t want to run the whole way round, and just jumped the barrier!

“He ran into the middle of the track and met the other dogs there.”

Afghan hounds are famously independent, said Julie Parsons, an Afghan owner and trainer.

She said: “They are absolutely beautiful dogs, but they know their own minds.

“I once had a dog that won 17 races in a row before they decided suddenly, halfway through their 18th race, that they didn’t want to do it any more.

“They sat down in the middle of the stadium and that was that!

“They can run nearly as fast as their cousins, the greyhounds.

“We managed to clock one of the dog’s running at 22mph, so they’re pretty speedy.”

The dogs, which start racing when they are one year old, are massive attention seekers said Julie.

She said: “They absolutely love attention.

“As soon as we arrive somewhere like Romford, they’re yapping away.”

On September 4, the charity are holding a greyhound show at the stadium, with food stalls, a bar and entertainment.

For more information on the RGOA, including rehoming opportunities, click here.

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