Locals say Super Bowl ad glorifies greyhound racing

Locals say Super Bowl ad glorifies greyhound racing »Play Video
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — A local group of greyhound advocates have boycotted the shoe company Skechers.

Eric Kelley and other greyhound owners say the company plans to run an ad on Super Bowl Sunday that they believe glorifies greyhound racing.

"When they are at the track, they are not treated how we would treat our pets at home, at all. They are crated or caged in very small crates that are barely large enough for them to stand or move around in," Kelley said.

In the commercial, a French bulldog named Mr. Quiggly will take to the track racing against greyhounds. Quiggly will be wearing Skechers Gorun running shoes to beat the other dogs.

In a statement, the company said the ad "will use humor to illustrate how Skechers now produces performance footwear that's exceeding expectations and impressing runners and athletes everywhere."

Homestretch Greyhound Rescue near Tehachapi said it was contacted by Skechers to use their dogs in the commercial. The rescue told Eyewitness News its immediate answer was no.

Since the rescue found out about the commercial, it has gone to Skechers stores in Los Angeles protesting the commercial. The protests have gone nationwide. More than 117,000 people have signed the online petition.

In a statement to Eyewitness News, the company said the American Humane Film and Television Unit was on set during filming and no animals were harmed. But Kelley said that isn't good enough and still wants the ad pulled.

"Given the conditions in which the commercial was filmed, it is possible that they would comply with the rules to film a commercial like that," Kelley said.

Until the ad is pulled, Kelley said he will not be buying any of the company's products.

The commercial is scheduled to run on Super Bowl Sunday right before the two-minute warning in the first half of the game.