Hamilton humbled by recognition

HONOURED: Jim Hamilton, centre, was honoured with the naming of a baseball diamond in his name. He is pictured with family members (from left) Sherri Hamilton, Dean Hamilton, Anthony Hamilton and Hayley Hamilton. PAID TRIBUTE: A big crowd gathered to pay tribute to a legend of the game of baseball and the South Indians club with the naming of the Jim Hamilton Field.
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OVERWHELMED was the first word that came to Jim Hamilton when asked about the naming of a baseball diamond in his honour on Saturday, February 14.

“I got the biggest surprise of my life,” the South Indians stalwart told The Border Watch this week.

“I just couldn’t believe it.

“When you go on a committee you don’t expect these things, you go to help the club and when things like this come along, you think ‘why me?’.”

Over 100 people were at the ground for the naming of the diamond, which is now known as Jim Hamilton Field, with family, club and league dignitaries in attendance.

Hamilton has been involved with the Indians club and the Mount Gambier District Baseball League for the past 57 years and continues his involvement in his role as the club ground’s caretaker.

At 73 years-of-age Hamilton said he enjoyed many highlights over the years, which all revolved around the friends he had made along the way.

“It was not only the South guys but guys from other clubs as well,” he said.

“A lot of them call me grandpa now, some call me dinosaur and probably worse behind my back.

“In the early days baseball was played in the winter so I could play cricket in summer and baseball in winter.

“I remember Graham Greenwood and I were very good friends, even though he played with Federal and I played with South.

“We used to train and run together during the week and went away for the Victorian Provincial Baseball League.

“We went to Adelaide and played country championships.”

Despite dealing with health issues, Hamilton said he watches most games during the season, with his son Dean playing for South.

“If it’s cold I don’t go but I would say I’ve seen more than half the games this year,” he said.

“With Dean playing it’s motivation to go out and watch.”

And Hamilton likes what he sees with the club in its current form.

“I think the club’s more polished than years ago,” he said.

“They look after things a lot better.

“I’m happy with the committee at South.

“I think they are on the right track and have a very bright future.”

While Hamilton said he felt a sense of pride about the naming of the diamond, it was hard to describe.

“Words just can’t express my feelings,” he said.

“It was just absolutely fantastic I feel very humbled.”

Man dies in intense Norwood house fire

FATAL FIRE: Firefighters make their way through the Norwood house in which a man died.A MAN is dead and another is lucky he was not asleep in the Norwood home when it was destroyed by an intense fire.
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The fire at Beech Road ripped through the home late on Monday night, with neighbours fearing it may spread, such was its intensity.

Emergency services located the body of a man believed to be Andrew Brooks, 56, who lived in the main part of the home alone and used a wheelchair.

His brother Peter would have been sleeping in the downstairs area but was instead staying at his ex-partner’s home.

Neighbours reported 10-metre flames and the back part of the house blowing out.

Peter Brooks said a firefighter described it as “one of the most intense fires he’s ever scene” and it could be seen from Rocherlea.

He said his brother had sleep apnoea and had been very ill for a long time, but was previously active in the community.

“He used to head up Neighbourhood Watch. He used to help a lot of people out,” Mr Brooks said.

“He was a computer whiz and used to help a lot of people with university projects.”

Mr Brooks said he would have been staying there that night if it was not the start of his weekend.

“Otherwise I’m 99.9 per cent sure I would have been there,” he said.

“I would have got out because I’m a real light sleeper.”

Mr Brooks said his brother had been somewhat of a hoarder and the home was full of ignitable material.

He said his brother’s death was the end of an era for the family, which had moved to Beech Road in the middle of the ’70s.

His father had bought the home as the first lot of a subdivision of Wilks farm.

When the family moved it was still very rural with cow paddocks surrounding the home.

The Tasmania Fire Service is yet to determine the cause of the fire, but believe it may have started in the living room and was not suspicious.

The fire destroyed the property causing up to $400,000 damage and a surrounding home experienced some minor damage from radiant heat.

A neighbour at the scene said there was “no hope of putting it out”.

“The other two houses, I can’t believe they didn’t go up,” the neighbour said.

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My Kitchen Rules 2015 recap episode 11: Rose and Josh battle the soggy paella

The first mum and son duo on MKR are tight. Photo: Supplied Rose and Josh battle a soggy paella. Photo: Supplied
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Rose’s dream comes true when Pete and Manu both crash her kitchen. Photo: Supplied

View the latest MKR news and recaps

Rose and Josh want to bring huge amounts of Latin flair to – um – Bacchus Marsh. But on the way they’ll have to contend with a potentially devastating calasparra crisis, some cursed prawn water, and a bum dance from fellow contestant Adam.

Tonight Rose wants to cook something that reflects her Uruguayan roots so they’ve settled on a Spanish theme for their instant restaurant, which they’ve imaginatively named “Mi Cocina”. There’s also a bullfighting theme in the dining room. It’s clear the duo have a strong relationship and are incredibly supportive of each other, a rare thing in reality TV land.

They’re also the first mother and son on MKR and nobody is allowed to forget it. And they say they’re proud of each other about 823 times during the course of the episode so you might want to start a drinking game right now if you’d like to salvage this Tuesday night. But the other couples have more nefarious plans: we’re treated to five minutes of Carol and Adam doing their best to sound villainous and saying they want total disaster to strike.

The producers have clearly decided they want to make the contractual shopping segment more dramatic – so we get Josh and Rose driving frantically to their favourite deli to find special rice for their paella. We’re never told what rice it is but let’s use common sense and assume it’s calasparra – unless Rose makes paella with black glutinous rice (what a twist). If there’s no special rice at the deli, Josh says, they’re going to have to drive an hour to the city to find it. Rose sprints into the store, the music builds to a screeching peak and we get to see a middle aged woman clutch a bag of rice to her bosom and swoon in relief. Let’s pause for a moment to honour the solid stock-ordering systems of rural Victorian delis. What champions.

Back to the house they go and time to prepare your tissues for another Hallmark moment – Josh gets to put on his MKR branded apron with his name specially stitched on it. “We can finally put it on,” Josh says with a break in his voice. “I’ve wanted this for so long.” Solid priorities.

Now they get cooking – they’re making calamari tubes stuffed with breadcrumbs, chorizo and herbs, cooked in a tomato and garlic sauce for an entree. There’s a paella for the main. And dessert is apple and cinnamon empanadas with chocolate sauce. The other contestants try to explain what empanadas are. Debra thinks they’re “like curry puffs but with apple and cinnamon inside”. Evie reckons they’re “a really good Maccas apple pie”.

The other contestants are bringing the Bacchus to the Marsh with long flirty gowns and dapper suits. Vicky and Celine are particularly keen on the fashions tonight.  “I’m in a full nice dress,” Celine says. “It’s very high class.” Everyone gets a carnation at the door and a bullfighting themed napkin on their onyx place setting. Adam is so impressed  that he just keeps repeating the word “bullfighting” over and over again in a dazed kind of way. Sensing they need to placate the masses, Rose and Josh have cleverly prepared a boatload of sangria which leads to more cackling than a witches’ annual coven.

Into this sizzling atmosphere walk Manu Feildel and Pete Evans. “I’m expecting only the best,” says Manu, worryingly. Eve, Debra and Sheri and Emilie are all overcome with the judges’ handsomeness – “It was like we were on a date,” Sheri coos. There could be more than just bullfighting in Mi Cocina tonight. Alas, Pete and Manu only have eyes for each other as they taste the first entree, exchanging meaningful glances over the all important stuffed calamari tubes.

“How long have you wanted to be on the competition?” asks Pete.

“I’ve wanted to be on here since I was 14,” Josh admits – a confession that would probably pack more of a punch if he wasn’t just 18 bloody years old. It’s pretty touching though, and everyone bursts into “salty tears”, except for Adam who’s still repeating “bullfighting” under his breath. There’s not enough sausage in the tubes, and Pete fearlessly says so but Rose and Josh win praise for the warm flavours and perfect texture on the calamari.

The mum and son retreat to the kitchen, give each other hugs and say they love each other. Mothers all round Australia are smacking their grown sons upside the head and asking why they can’t be more like Josh and who can blame them? But then Manu barges into the kitchen. He tells Rose that she reminds him of his mother and then throws shade at her paella technique. “Why aren’t you cooking the mussels and the prawns in the paella?” he asks, frowning. Having successfully cursed the kitchen, he scampers back to the dining room, probably cackling. Indeed, Rose and Josh proceed to screw up their paella with too much stock and liquid, rendering it soggy and disastrous. Plus, Rose throws away some crucial prawn water which could have reversed the Feildel Curse.

Back in the dining room, everyone is talking about whether they fight in the kitchen. Matt and Rob say they don’t fight – probably because Rob/Baby Thor has access to a giant super-powered hammer (that joke’s included for your Baby Thor drinking game). “We talk about it,” Matt says, diplomatically. Carol and Adam admit they bullfight a lot.

Josh and Rose serve up their cursed paella, which Pete points out looks more like a seafood risotto. Manu says he didn’t go to Spain with the main. “It doesn’t seem ole to me,” he says – a useful response to many situations. Everyone is now forced to flamenco dance for Manu and Pete and the nation. We endure a parade of humiliation – Adam does a “bum dance” and fans his derriere, Celine grinds and makes terrifying faces, Baby Thor hides under a scarf while Matt snaps like a turtle on the castanet. It doesn’t seem ole to anyone.

Meanwhile, empanadas are served, drizzled with chocolate and salty tears of regret. Alas, they are undercooked and don’t have enough chocolate sauce on them. But all the hugging and saying “I’m so proud of you” pays off – Rose and Josh become the first mother and son duo on MKR to score 66 and catapult into second place. Baby Thor and Matt are still firmly attached to the bottom, just like a pair of stubborn oysters.

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Elvis impersonator Neddi named king

No elvis hound dog: Julie Scott with Neddi, who won the best dressed award at the Ballarat Beat Poodle Parade. PICTURE: LACHLAN BENCETHE king was crowned on Sunday. Neddi the standard poodle did his Elvis Presley costume proud at the Ballarat Beat Poodle Parade on Sunday, but he’s not just a poser.
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He is an assistance dog for owner Julie Scott, who relies on him to get around.

“He gets me out of the house and will support me when I’m at home as well,” she said. “I trained him to remind me when it’s tablet time, as well.”

Ms Scott said Neddi even knew when her blood pressure was high: “He’ll jump up on my lap and put his face up near mine to tell me.”

Neddi won the best dressed award at the poodle parade, in its first showing at the Ballarat Beat Rockabilly Festival.

Ms Scott made the Elvis jumpsuit for him because she thought it would be a fun day out among the rockabilly crew and other poodle lovers.

“We just kept getting stopped for photos, everyone loved him,” she said.

“He knew it, too, he loved the attention.”

It was quite a departure from the almost-two-year-old dog’s everyday role, which is much like a guide dog. When he is wearing his assistant dog vest, he should not be patted or played with.

Neddi even has has a special pass to use public transport with Ms Scott.

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Medical clinics promote ketamine injections as treatment for depression

Depression is being treated with a drug not approved for such use.Medical clinics are marketing  experimental ketamine injections directly to the public as a treatment for severe depression.
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The hallucinogen, well known as a horse sedative and party drug, is being promoted as a “path breaking treatment option” available at Aura Medical Corporation clinics in Sydney and Melbourne.

The Therapeutic Goods Administration has clinically approved the use of ketamine as an anaesthetic and for pain control but not for treating depression, except in the context of a clinical trial.

Some expert psychiatrists have reservations with the fact that patients are receiving the drug, saying extensive testing is needed to determine its safety and effectiveness. It is not illegal for doctors to prescribe ketamine for uses other than those approved because it is a registered drug.

Aura medical director Associate Professor Graham Barrett said 30 patients had completed a course of injections, with three-quarters achieving a full recovery from depression, while another 35 were currently undergoing treatment. Each ketamine injection costs $150 and a typical treatment involves about 18 injections.

Dr Barrett said ketamine was well established as a treatment for depression internationally and had a high rate of success but Australians were suffering while they waited for it to receive regulatory approval.

“I think unless you have had depression or unless you know someone who has had depression you can’t understand how severe that suffering can be,” Dr Barrett said.

Aura has links to the controversial chain of impotence clinics run under the name Advanced Medical Institute. The two companies share the same building in Sydney and the listed director and single shareholder of Aura, Michael Tattersall, is operations manager at Australian Custom Pharmaceuticals, which has prepared medications for and with AMI.

Mr Tattersall did not return calls and an AMI operator hung up on the Herald when asked about the connection between the companies.

Black Dog Institute psychiatrist Professor Colleen Loo, who has conducted the only Australian trial of ketamine as a treatment for depression, said the results were promising but it was too early to introduce it into general clinics.

“What we’re finding is that a single treatment of ketamine usually given by injection form can cause an amazingly fast improvement in depression but for the majority of people it doesn’t last more than a few days,” Professor Loo said.

Professor Loo said there ketamine was not an approved depression treatment anywhere in the world and there needed to be more research into dosage levels, side effects and how to make positive effects last longer.

Sydney University Brain and Mind Research Institute executive director Professor Ian Hickie said the “off label” use of ketamine reflected the demand for more immediate treatment for depression but there were known risks of using the drug.

Experts say those potential risks include damaging bladder function, increasing depression, inducing psychotic experiences or addiction, and affecting blood pressure.

“Jumping straight out of those experimental situations just because the drug is available and into private clinics is an inappropriate development at this stage,” Professor Hickie said.

Electrician John Schofield, 57, said he was thankful to have received 21 ketamine injections at Aura’s Melbourne clinic. While at first apprehensive that the drug was not approved as a treatment for depression, he said nothing else could alleviate his suffering.

“I thought nothing seems to be doing it for me. The antidepressants weren’t really doing it, they helped me a little bit but it didn’t give me a cure,” Mr Schofield said. “I’m happy with the treatment. I think it’s done something for me.”

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Service honoured

HONOUR: Royal South Australian Regiment Band members Michael Bampton and Nigel Fortune played the Last Post at the wreath laying ceremony at Vansittart Park on Saturday.COLOURFUL wreaths were laid at the foot of Mount Gambier’s War Memorial on the weekend to honour Australians who undertook national service.
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National Servicemen’s Day was held on Saturday for the men and women who served Australia with pride and honour during four periods of compulsory military service, with the most recent two schemes involving more than 280,000 “Nashos” between 1951-1959 and 1964-1972.

The last scheme was introduced in 1964 in response to Australia’s growing involvement in South East Asia.

Men of 20 years of age were required to register with the Department of Labour and National Service and their fate was then determined by the “birthday ballot”.

A wreath laying ceremony was held at Vansittart Park as one of many ceremonies across Australia.

Reverend John Deer led the crowd in prayer before Royal South Australian Regiment Band members Michael Bampton and Nigel Fortune played the Last Post.

From 1964 to 1972 more than 804,000 men registered for national service, of whom more than 63,000 were called up to serve in the Army.

Of these men, more than 15,000 went on to serve in the Vietnam War, with 201 killed and more than 1200 wounded.

“It is important that we remember them and the sacrifices they made,” National Servicemen South East president Lyndon Manser said.

“Some of them were very young when they died and it is important that their legacy lives on.”

The short service was followed by the Gallipoli Ball at the Mount Gambier Community RSL.

Veterans Affairs Minister Michael Ronaldson said Australia owed a great debt to the men who underwent training and served our nation, often on foreign soil.

“Nashos are an important part of our military history and their contribution should never be forgotten,” Senator Ronaldson said.

“This is particularly poignant as the nation commemorates a Century of Service over the Anzac Centenary 2014-18.”

Reza Barati’s death remembered on social media with #LightTheDark

“Shut down Manus:” A slogan written by skywriters in Sydney. Photo: Peter RaeMessage in Sydney skies: Shut down Manus
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One year after the death of Reza Barati, the asylum seeker has been remembered on Twitter with the commemorative hashtag #LightTheDark.

On February 17 last year the 23-year-old Iranian asylum seeker was killed during riots and violence that swept through Manus Island detention centre over a three-day period.

The anniversary of Barati’s death was recognised across Twitter, as thousands shared photos of candles lit in his memory and of other asylum seekers still in detention.

Other Twitter users shared messages condemning detention centres and the Australian government. I #LightTheDark for you Reza with this candle. Think of how you could’ve been my brother. I grieve for your mum. RIP pic.twitter南京夜网/OFvp74c3aF — Kon Karapanagiotidis (@Kon__K) February 17, 2015#LightTheDark in memory of Reza Berati killed under Australia’s care on Manus Island 1 year ago. End this inhumanity. pic.twitter南京夜网/rwALPgaJSc — Charlie (@CharlieOneTime) February 17, 2015

The hashtag followed a lunchtime sky-writing display organised to commemorate the anniversary, with the words “Shut down Manus” penned in the sky above the Opera House.

The sky-writing was organised by three artists, including Asha Bee-Abraham, after they crowdfunded the idea and raised $9700 in a week.

Abraham told Fairfax Media the trio had already been thanked by an asylum seeker on Manus Island.

“We got a Facebook message from a detainee saying that ‘even words cannot express my appreciation to you and all your people who have empathy for our plight. I am so happy to see that lots of people with hearts and compassion still exist,'” Abraham said.

#LightTheDark has been previously used on Twitter to recognise the death of Iranian asylum seeker Hamid Kehazaei, whose life support was switched off after he contracted septicaemia on Manus Island last year.

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MP warning on GP tax

Discussing health matters: Dr Samantha Culvenor and Ballarat MP Catherine King.BALLARAT MP Catherine King has called on the federal government to officially scrap the GP tax.
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During a visit to the Health First Medical Group on Tues-

day, Ms King said claims by the government that a $2 billion cut from Medicare had already been dropped were untrue.

Ms King said as it stood, the slash to Medicare rebates had not been taken off the table.

“What it will mean for some practices in rural areas is that they will cease to become viable,” she said. “It could mean closures or others may be forced to scale back, which would have serious ramifi-cations on medical care.”

Ms King also touched other topical issues, including a

need for the federal govern-ment to address the national decline in organ and tissue donation and a need for the

establishment of more housing and care options for young people living in nursing homes.

Earlier this month, it was announced the 6000 young Australians with disabilities who were living in aged-care homes would be the subject of a national inquiry, spearheaded by Senate backbencher Linda Reynolds.

Ms King said she would welcome any investment into the area of care for young people living with disabilities in regional Victoria.

“There is a widespread demand for this type of care,” she said. “There needs to be capital investment into specific areas or wings at aged-care facilities for young people. It is clear residential aged care as we know it not suitable for young people.”

Health First Medical Group, opened in Doveton Street South in May last year and operates as a GP practice with allied health professionals. In a step towards tackling the region’s GP shortage, the practice recently employed two more doctors and a podiatrist.

Newly employed GP Sam-

antha Culvenor, who moved from Creswick, said the point of difference of the practice was that many of the doctors had grown up in regional areas and understood the importance of having continuity of care for patients.

At the moment, the practice bulk bills children under 16 and pensioners.

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STINKER: Warm water has fish in frenzy

DOING IT RIGHT: Stinker reckons his research indicates commercial fishers have been fishing sustainably since the mid 1800s.AS WE all know fishing is a cyclical game.
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Seasonal change, weather conditions and water temperatures all contribute to success or failure.

The extraordinary water temperature, up to 26 degrees, that we are currently experiencing is driving the fish into a frenzy.

Inside the port Duff tells me the bream are going crackers around the oyster racks and flathead are lining up along the western end of Bagnalls Beach.

Crabs, muddies and blue swimmers are restless at the top of Tilligerry Creek while tailor are ravenous on the Nelson Bay breakwall just on dark.

Local champ Derek Smith bounced a couple of mulloway to 15 kilograms up Stockton Beach and then moved onto the rocks at Birubi to catch luderick up to 1kg.

Further up the beach Schoey, another champ, reports thumping whiting attacking unfortunate worms.

Outside the heads teraglin, mulloway, kingfish, small marlin, dolphin fish and monster sharks are providing entertainment on the 25-fathom line.

You guessed it – fish love warm water.

Let me say again – I support sustainable commercial fishing in Port Stephens as I believe the public, visitors and locals alike, who are unable to catch their own fish have every right to access fresh local fish.

I also support the excellent seafood outlets on Teramby Road that supply the product.

If you have any evidence of unsustainable fishing practices, commercial or recreational, in this Port forward it to me and I will get stuck in to the issue.

For those who do not understand my opinion on this issue please stick this article on the fridge door for future reference.

– Stinker

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Former local greyhound trainer caught in baiting scandal

Darren McDonald, who has twice been named Australian Greyhound Trainer of the Year, was implicated in the scandal after animal rights activists filmed secret footage that was aired on the ABC Four Corners program on Monday night.
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A FORMER Warrnambool district trainer has been caught up in live-baiting revelations that have rocked the greyhound industry.

Darren McDonald, who has twice been named Australian Greyhound Trainer of the Year, was implicated in the scandal after animal rights activists filmed secret footage that was aired on the ABC Four Corners program on Monday night.

McDonald, who runs his operation out of Devon Meadows, was allegedly caught on camera securing a live piglet to a mechanical lure at a private training track at Tooradin, south-east of Melbourne, late last year.

After a few laps, McDonald and a handler are allegedly shown removing muzzles from the greyhounds and the dogs then maul the animal, which can be heard squealing in the background.

The Four Corners report uncovered evidence of how trainers have been secretly blooding their dogs with live rabbits, possums and pigs as part of systemic and widespread cheating within the country’s multi-million-dollar greyhound industry.

Animal welfare groups have called for the dismantling of the industry following the revelations of widespread cheating, illegal live baiting and archaic training methods.

RSPCA Victoria chief executive officer Liz Walker said officers were investigating the “barbaric” training practices which implicated multiple trainers across three states.

“We are shocked to the core that the illegal practice of subjecting live animals to being torn apart and killed as part of greyhound training is still occurring in Australia,” Dr Walker said.

The RSPCA received a formal complaint in late January and inspected a Tooradin facility last week.

“The information that we received in the short lead-up to our investigation was absolutely appalling,” Dr Walker said.

“The problem with the greyhound industry is that it is entirely self-regulated and the drive for financial gain through betting and prizemoney far outweighs any concerns for the welfare of the defenceless animals used as live bait or the greyhounds.”

Dr Walker said she was stunned that stewards missed or failed to report any live baiting practices despite carrying out more than 1000 inspections of kennels and training facilities in the past financial year.

The RSPCA has called for a lifetime ban on animal ownership and the revocation of training licences for people found breaching animal cruelty legislation.

Greyhound Racing Victoria last week suspended 10 people implicated in live baiting by the ABC program, but refused to name them.

McDonald has been reported as being one of those who has had his licence suspended.

In a statement released yesterday, GRV said it did not tolerate the use of live bait and the minimum recommended penalty for the offence was a 10-year ban.

Chairman Peter Caillard said he condemned the practice: “I watched and was sickened. The use of live bait in the training of greyhounds is abhorrent and has no place in our sport.”

Mr Caillard refuted allegations in the program that the practice was widespread in Victoria.

“To the best of our knowledge, this disgusting and illegal behaviour is isolated in Victoria to the privately-owned training facility at Tooradin.”

He said the use of dead animals in greyhound training on private premises or registered training premises would also be banned in future.

The state government yesterday announced a broad investigation into the allegations by the state’s chief veterinary officer and the racing integrity commissioner.

Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford said the government was serious about animal welfare and had taken immediate steps to address “these reprehensible acts of cruelty”.

“We want to send a strong message to the community and the industry that this sort of horrific behaviour will not be tolerated,” Ms Pulford, who is the member for Western Victoria, said.

It is not known how the allegations will impact the south-west greyhound racing industry.

Warrnambool Greyhound Racing Club did not respond to calls from The Standard yesterday.

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