Photographer Exposes Traumatized Dogs Who Were Abandoned After Hunting Season For No Reason

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Greyhounds have a long history in European countries, especially Spain, where they were once cherished by noble families and used as hunting dogs. In this day and age they are still bred by the thousands every hunting season, but as soon as the season closes, they are no longer needed and tragic consequences follow.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-2Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

Most dogs are simply abandoned or neglected, while others are killed by the government or by their owners as they are no longer convenient to have around, and most owners do not want to spend money on their dogs out of season.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-8Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

Where Hunting Dogs Rest is a photography book documenting greyhounds who are today abandoned, neglected or conveniently "gotten rid of" by the government.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-7Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

British photographer Martin Usborne was inspired to do this project after he learnt about the greyhounds' sad fate during his research for another project. According to Featureshoot website, Usborne had no doubt greyhounds would be his next work:

 

[…]As a youngster, he remembers watching a television program in which a whale was slaughtered, the effects of which lingered with his childhood self for days. He rediscovered the same unforgettable pangs upon stumbling across an image in which a Spanish galgo dog lay limp and hanged from a tree, left there by his former master.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-6Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

The dogs are often abandoned and killed in remote regions of the country, so it is almost impossible to calculate their exact numbers. Some say that 40,000 are killed a year, while others say it could be up to 200,000.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-5Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

Either way, they all have a grisly death because their owners deem them "too slow" or "too old" to keep for the next hunting season. Some are thrown down wells, others are hanged from trees, and others still are abandoned with a stick between their jaws to prevent them from drinking the water they need to survive.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-1Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

Greyhounds are considered lucky if they are simply dumped at a shelter, but even there, they are likely to get killed as their chances of getting adopted are very slim.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-9Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

These gentle, timid and extremely sweet dogs are thus victims of an animal genocide each year, and Usborne wanted to draw attention to these atoricites with his book. He wrote on his website:

 

The project shows dogs that have found rest in the rescue centres and also the locations where other, less fortunate dogs have found a different kind of rest in the heart of the Spanish landscape.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-4Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

By ordering the book you can support a Kickstarter campaign to raise money to create awareness for this cause. You can also see the full collection of moving portraits on Usborne's wesbite.

 

greyhounds-photoshoot-spain-3Source: Martin Usborne Photography

 

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