Greyhounds are led out at the Macau Canidrome in June. Many of the dogs have been bought from Australia. Photograph: Bobby Yip/Reuters
Authorities in Macau, the world’s largest gambling hub, will care for more than 600 greyhounds after their owner renounced them ahead of the closure of China’s only dog-racing track on Saturday.
The move is likely to save former Australian racing dogs, which were exported to Macau in huge numbers and faced an uncertain fate when the track closes.
The Macau Canidrome has been the subject of a long dispute between government officials in the Chinese territory, animal rights activists and one of the enclave’s most well-known businesswomen, Angela Leong, the fourth wife of billionaire gaming magnate Stanley Ho.
Leong, a long-standing Macau politician and executive director of Yat Yuen, the company that operated the Canidrome Club, has been criticised by animal rights groups.
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