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Greyhound, so excited and happy! What do I need to know?(7 Posts)
After ten months of searching and waiting (since our last lovely old girl Labrador passed away), we’ve finally found the right match for our really lonely boy Labrador. We’ve had fosters and multiple friends dogs to stay but he really needed a proper, constant companion as he was getting more depressed (despite our constant attention) by the week. He’s old now, bless him, and showing it, and has always been a ‘frustrated greeter’ but a sweet boy in the right company, so we needed the ‘right’ dog. Although he has been the perfect teacher for many friend’s puppies we couldn’t impose one on him full time as he’s got limited energy now, so have been looking for the right rescue dog (our fifth, he’s a rescue too). After DH and DD1 visited two lovely little bundles of poodley fun yesterday, who seemed perfect, we went off this morning for a meet and greet with them. Sadly our lovely old boy, despite being a gentleman, seemed to utterly terrify the little poodle girl. We were a bit sad as Dogs Trust had thought they would do well with another dog, and they loved us humans. Nevermind, it was all about the dogs (especially our boy), not us and it wasn’t to be. But the guy helping us said, ‘We have just got in a lovely greyhound girl, owner just passed away, think her assessment is over today’. OMG she’s adorable, our boy and her seemed to be very comfortable together, spent about three hours playing and walking them and her greyhoundy temperament and, ahem, laziness, seems a perfect match. We will do a couple more meets but really, we’re pretty certain she’s coming home next weekend. Only thing is, despite being experienced dog owners of many years, we’ve never had a pointy nosed sighthound before. So, please, experts tell us what do we need to know? I’m thinking things that will be different:
Different collar, Martingale presumably?
Differently positioned harness (she’s used to walking on a harness) looking at the RuffWear Webmaster.
Different bedding? The boy has a The Dog’s Bed Orthopaedic - is that too firm for a greyhound?
Needs a high feeding station maybe? Tbh the Boy could probably do with one now he’s older so that will work well.
Only having had Labradors for years, so never had to think about ‘The Cold’ before for a dog. What temperature low means a greyhound might need a coat? We live in probably the warmest part of the U.K. (on average) so not a lot of below zero, frost, or snow. Do they still need a coat on chilly spring/autumn days?
Finally, prey drive. Dog’s Trust list pretty much all sighthounds as high prey drive just to be on the safe side. Obviously, we will have to assess what she is comfortable with and will be sensible and careful. But how do you safely do that? Eg we have friends that visit with smallish dogs (cocker to toy poodle size), I guess as that’s in our control we can see how it goes but, are the neighbours visiting (welcome but not invited!) cats in danger? I know all dogs are individuals, of course, and some greyhounds will be fine with cats etc but how on alert should I be?
I have two beautiful greyhounds, they are wonderful dogs. I'm by no means an expert, had my boy almost 2 years and my girl a year but happy to answer questions.
I use harnesses in the winter and then when it is very hot I switch to Martingales. The harnesses we have are fleece ones hence the switching in summer.
For house collars and Martingales I highly recommend 'pink fluffy kitty' so many amazing designs and all handmade in the UK. Despite the name she specialises in Sighthound collars.
Definitely raised feeders, you need to leave at least 30 mins between walks and food as well to avoid bloat.
The general rule is if you need a coat so does your greyhound. You'll quickly find yourself amassing a collection of coats. They need a thin rain coat and a winter coat which is also waterproof.
Preydrive is very much dependant on the dog. It would be sensible to use a muzzle at the start so you can get a gauge of how she is around small fluffy dogs and cats. I only let mine off lead when we go to an enclosed field.
Sorry if I've missed anything xxx
Thanks! She’s just going in for a teeth clean up today and all being well we will have her Sunday. Been spending money like water getting new beds, harness, collars, bowls etc. Just checking the vast array of coats now!
Congratulations! Welcome to the greyhound club! They are fabulous dogs. I love mine to bits. They are complicated creatures with deep souls.
I think mine had all the greyhound neuroses going, so we've had to deal with a lot of issues in the 3.5 years we've had her. Many quirks we've just decided to live with (like she refuses to go for walks in winter) and others we got a behaviouralist to help us. Ours is very cuddly, and will paw us endlessly for rubs. We never touch her when she is sleeping as she snaps if woken unexpectedly. That's drawn blood a couple of times before we figured it out (she sleeps with her eyes open a lot).
Yours will likely have quirks too - hopefully the rescue centre can advise. Our dog came straight from the racers so we had to figure her out from scratch.
If your dog is food motivated they will be easier to train, I think. Ours does anything for a hot dog (except walk in the cold or rain) so it was easy enough to train her to live with our two cats, even though one is white and fluffy and flighty!
And yeah ours has more coats and pyjamas than I have! I have to get her pyjamas on in the evening before she goes to sleep otherwise she climbs into our bed at 3am when she gets cold. She curls up really small when she first gets into bed then slowly expands and kicks us out with those muscly legs!
We have a whippador since a puppy - lab whippet x - we also have two cats ( they were there first ) - she’s adorable , greedy as hell , terrified of one cat but loves the other , chases cats ( not her own ) squirrels but absolutely fine with other dogs and children - ah yes sleeps on the bed but curls up small
Congrats. My SiL seems to alternate between rescue greyhounds and lurchers these days. Lovely dogs. The last greyhound was from a racing yard so never really got the hang of play. Stand well back from the tail when excited (it hurts!).
Are you in the countryside/likely to go there for walks? Watch out for brambles - their skin on their legs is thin.
Also go easy on the first few walks. These dogs are sprinters so run out of puff after a while. They are very good jumpers too.
Yes to coats and martingales.
Should your new houseguest ever have to wear a "cone of shame", the inflatable ones are less likely to just fall off over the head.