BALTIMORE (WJZ) — — A second greyhound racing trainer has been cited by Florida state officials after five dogs in her care tested positive for cocaine at the Bestbet track in Orange Park.
Trained by Natasha Nemeth, the dogs tested positive for Benzoylecgonine (BZE), which is a metabolite of cocaine, First Coast News reported.
The latest development in Orange Park arrived shortly after racing dog trainer Charles McClellan’s license was suspended in June after 12 greyhounds in his care tested positive for BZE 18 times at Bestbet.
The first positive test related to Nemeth occurred in October 2016, when greyhound WW’s Quick Brady tested positive for BZE. But the remaining positive tests by Nemeth-trained dogs all occurred in May, according to state records.
Flicka — one of the five dogs that tested positive for BZE while in Nemeth’s care — tested positive after a May 12 race at Bestbet, when Nemeth was listed as the trainer. The greyhound also tested positive six other times while in McClellan’s care, state records show.
WW Green Means Go, another Nemeth-trained dog, tested positive for BZE on May 20. A greyhound named Dennis Leary, and another named Principal, tested positive on May 22.
Bestbet told First Coast News that the track has not been officially notified about Nemeth’s violations, but were notified on June 9 following McClellan’s license suspension.
State officials are not required to notify the track when a greyhound tests positive for BZE.
Bestbet said they have a “zero-tolerance” policy for any trainer or track staff member who endangers a dog’s health. Track employees said their dog trainers are independent contractors, and not track employees themselves.
Nemeth was still listed as a Bestbet dog racing trainer as of July 9 — a month after she was cited for the drug violations.
McClellan’s dog trainer license has been suspended pending an August hearing, and Nemeth’s hearing on the status of her license will occur on Sept. 26.