Saturday, July 16, 2011

They really did have a monkey on their back!

These are pictures of greyhounds with monkeys acting as jockeys. This is how they used to race in the 1930's. When I first started working at the track they told me about this and I thought they were lying. They weren't. About a week later the track played a feature film documentary (they used to play something everyday before the races on the monitors) which showed actual movie reels with the footage of these races.

The practice was stopped because a lot of monkeys were killed when the greyhounds would fall and/or collide on the track. It seems the monkeys were tied on top of the greyhounds. This also increased the injury rate for the greyhounds as well.

I knew some very old dogmen who claimed to have actually seen some of these races. They claimed they were very funny because the monkeys would actually fight each other while the dogs were running around the track. Some of the monkeys would reach over and bite the other dogs and pull their ears and tails during the races too. This led to more wrecks and injuries on the track.

I have also found some footage in my videotape collection from a National Geographic special. I am working on getting it transfered to DVD so I can post it on here.

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