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Criminal law: Greyhound trainer gives dogs Viagra and cannabis to fix races

Anthony Gregory Fowler, from Stockton, had been investigated by the police in September 2010 for dealing cannabis. But during his interviews with the police, it also became evident that the greyhound trainer had not only been supplying drugs to people but also to his dogs.

Mr Fowler had been drugging his greyhound Jake, amongst other dogs, with cannabis in order to make them run slowly so they would lose at the unlicensed dog race meetings he attended.

Once the dogs had lost and their odds got longer, Mr Fowler would place bets on his dogs and then feed them Viagra, which he said made them "run their heads off".

The RSCPA quickly become involved with the case, but by the time their inspectors interviewed Mr Fowler, Jake the dog was already dead after injuring his shoulder during a race. Despite this, the RSCPA gathered enough evidence to prosecute Mr Fowler.

Their prosecutor, John Ellwood, said: "When he wanted the dog to win the race he injected it with a drug which turns out to be nandrolone, which is a testosterone derivative.

"He explained that the nandrolone and travel sickness pills which he had would affect the way the dogs would run and in particular he showed the officer Viagra tablets which according to him make them "run their heads off".

Cannabis causes dogs to convulse and hallucinate and Viagra causes inflammation of their blood vessels.

Initially, Mr Fowler denied any wrongdoing, but he later changed his plea to guilty of two counts of administering drugs to a dog, knowing it would be poisonous, and two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a dog.

He will be sentenced next Tuesday (19 July).

Related links:
Read more on this story (Darlington and Stockton Times)
Read about drugs and crime (FindLaw)
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