In Macau, the Managing Director for prominent local casino operator SJM Holdings Limited has reportedly announced that she is prepared to take in every one of the over 600 greyhounds that are set to be made homeless by the forthcoming closure of the Macau Yat Yuen Canidrome Club.
According to a report from Macau News, the offer from Angela Leong On Kei came after local animal rights group Anima urged the government to take over the greyhound racing facility for at least a year once the venue closes from July 20 so that it may have time to re-house the animals overseas.
The offer from 56-year-old Leong, who is the fourth wife of nonagenarian casino magnate Stanley Ho while also serving as an elected member of Macau’s Legislative Council, reportedly came during a Tuesday health and safety event being held at her firm’s under-construction Grand Lisboa Palace.
SJM Holdings Limited reportedly owns the operator behind the closing greyhound racing facility, Macau (Yat Yuen) Canidrome Company Limited, and was ordered in July of 2016 to shutter the venue in the city’s northern Fai Chi Kei neighborhood within two years so that the government could transform the site into a cultural, leisure, sports and education campus.
Leong reportedly declared that her company’s name was being ‘blackened’ by unsubstantiated claims that the Macau Yat Yuen Canidrome Club dogs were being mistreated and killed before stating that it had invited members of Anima to inspect the racetrack for themselves.
“I believe that the dogs are now living well and the owners of those dogs love and care about their dogs,” Leong reportedly told those assembled at the Grand Lisboa Palace event.
In response to an effort by some local animal rights activists to raise just over $5 million in order to send the greyhounds to new homes in Portugal, Leong reportedly moreover explained that ‘other people’ should not get involved as there is no need to re-house the dogs overseas because if she asked her friends to help with rehoming the dogs, many would want one.