Any greyhound people?

blob
Herd Member
Posts: 410
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:37 pm

Any greyhound people?

Postby blob » Mon Aug 12, 2019 10:07 pm

Any folks on here with experience with greyhounds? Particularly former racers?

In particular would love to hear how/if your greyhounds integrated well with other pets.

My boyfriend is looking to adopt a greyhound. We don't live together, but plan to soon. I have a cat, so the rescue he's working with is looking for 'cat tolerant' greyhounds for him. Though, it would be great to hear first hand experiences.

fergusnc
500 post plus club
Posts: 571
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2015 11:37 pm
Location: NC

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby fergusnc » Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:09 am

Thought about one at one phase of my life. Asked lots of questions. Super cool dogs, great feedback from folks who'd gotten rescues off the track, and from vets who'd had them as clients. What didn't mesh with me at the time was their sensitivity to temps...hard time regulating extremes...and where I lived, how I spent my time, my work schedule...lots of outside time and adventures in all temps, locked and fenced yard for periods of my work day in cold temps, etc. wouldn't have been a good match. They also seemed a bit cat-like in personality and I am a more in your face, I adore you, let's go do life personality as far as dog choosing. I met owners, foster homes, rescue volunteers who did have luck with them living with cats....just a matter of waiting for the right one. I think they tend to be pretty welcoming of dogs. Never off leash outside of a fence, ever ever ever, due to prey drive and how fast they go from zero to speedy when they see a squirrel...and how they will ignore all else in that state of mind, including cars. One thing the vet told me is that since they have little padding, when they play and wrestle, and race and nip in excitement, they often end up with little tears that need to be stitched. Some owners with really playful pairs will muzzle the dogs to prevent this. They aren't aggressive or anything, just a bit delicate in comparison to totally acceptable use of their mouth that wouldn't be an issue for dogs with more padding or fur.
I love running into them out and about at rescue events and such...they are just really cool.

heddylamar
500 post plus club
Posts: 712
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2015 3:04 pm
Location: Maryland

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby heddylamar » Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:33 am

A former coworker of mine had a greyhound and 2 cats who seemed to get along from photos and stories he shared.

PaulaO
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 1695
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2015 4:16 pm
Location: Northern Illinois

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby PaulaO » Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:15 pm

My friend has had at least 3 off the track greyhounds (not at the same time). There were cats and another dog in the house, and each greyhound got along. She has a big fenced yard so the dogs were able to be outside off leash. In the house, each dog was essentially a couch potato. Very loving, very sweet dogs.

User avatar
musical comedy
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 1173
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2015 3:41 pm
Location: New Jersey

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby musical comedy » Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:12 pm

My good friend had one. You could PM her on coth if you like (I'll check with her and see if it's ok to give out her board name). She had cats and horses at home. Against the rules, she allowed the dog to be unleased. That went ok. However, one day it met with an unfortunate accident and died. It wouldn't be a breed I'd ever consider, but to each his own.

piedmontfields
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 2125
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:41 pm
Location: E Tennessee USA

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby piedmontfields » Wed Aug 14, 2019 12:07 am

No direct experience, but I've high prey-drive dogs for years (without cats). The greyhound people I knew over the years from dog parks with cats said with an indoor cat, it was usually fine, but they would expect an outdoor cat to die from the dog(s).

I do love the quiet temperament of the greys...and many people seem to get another after the first! As hounds, they like company---but they are really quite big dogs! Like, I'd have to get a mini van instead of a euro-wagon lol! I'm hoping to one day transition to whippets in my post-pointer life....

NancyP
Novice
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:51 pm

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby NancyP » Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:59 pm

Me! me! Me!
I have had Greyhounds for 9+ years... 5 of them. Not all at once... 2/3 at a time!
Currently have 3, although only 2 are retired racers. One from the US and one from Ireland. The other just came to us 2 weeks ago from Spain.
We lost our Nixon 18 months ago at age 12.5++ and we just sent our Ruby 12.5 to the bridge a month ago.

When we got Nixon we had a GSDx and a PointerX and they all got along just fine.
I do not have any house cats but I do know many people who have cats and Greys living quite peacefully together.

fergusnc gave some good basic info above. And yes... they are just really cool!

For us a fenced in yard is a must as there is no way I'd be able to cope with dogs (no matter what breed) in an elevator or having to leash-walk them for potty breaks.
They can't ever be let loose in an area with no fence. They are way too fast. Just like you can't stop a Lab from picking up sticks or a BC from herding, you can't stop a Grey from chasing/running. They are FAST. Very FAST!

Yes... once they have done their morning zoomies around the yard they are couch potatoes!
And yes... muzzling is very common...and often recommended... as they play hard and have no hair to protect from their buddies little play nips.

I am in Ontario and my guys have light weight fleecy coats for indoors, mid weight fleecys for cool fall days and heavy weight winter coats for the minus 20 outings. Kind of like a pampered OTTB ;)

As well, all of my retired racing greys are / have been Certified St John Ambulance Therapy Dogs.
To me, this says a LOT about their calm, easy going temperaments and the way they were raised, handled and trained was top-notch.
Nixon and Nigel are/were reading dogs for 3rd graders. Ruby and Sid are/were visiting at Long Term Care. Sid will take his TD Childrens test in October. I will have Kibo the new Spanish fellow TD tested in the spring.

I'm happy to answer any other questions...

Koolkat
Herd Member
Posts: 472
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 2:15 am
Location: Cascade foothills

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby Koolkat » Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:41 pm

NancyP wrote:They can't ever be let loose in an area with no fence. They are way too fast. Just like you can't stop a Lab from picking up sticks or a BC from herding, you can't stop a Grey from chasing/running. They are FAST. Very FAST!


This reminds me of an incident 30+ years ago when I would go to a high school track in the early evening to run. At the time, we had a GSD, and one evening someone had brought their greyhound with them. Both dogs were off leash. The GSD and greyhound ended up in a friendly tussle, and the greyhound broke away and began running (catch me if you can!). Of course, the greyhound was at the end of the field before the GSD was at the 50 yard line! What was interesting though was that the GSD (she) persisted. And kept chasing the greyhound who would lie down until the GSD was upon her again. After 10 minutes of this, the greyhound was exhausted and would no longer get up and run. An interesting difference in strategies/breed tendencies. That greyhound was jaw dropping beautiful in motion, I'll never forget that scene.

piedmontfields
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 2125
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:41 pm
Location: E Tennessee USA

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby piedmontfields » Fri Aug 16, 2019 12:23 am

A question for Nancy P:

How safe does a fenced area need to be for grey to blow it out and run?

We have 3+ acres fenced (with woven wire) on our 20 acre property but it has trees, shrubs and meadow plants. Basically it looks like a bird field for training bird dogs. Would sight hounds just get torn up with so many obstacles? Our pointers love it...but the texture is what makes it interesting to them and draws in wildlife. Plain grass would be boring for pointers...but maybe safer for sight hounds? The lure coursing events I've seen are all done in very open fields.

blob
Herd Member
Posts: 410
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:37 pm

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby blob » Fri Aug 16, 2019 12:36 am

Thanks all, this has been super helpful.

My biggest worry is that my cat is very playful and often plays by darting around the house, which might be a trigger. But we have time to do the introduction slowly and carefully. And we'll utilize a muzzle in there beginning to be extra safe.

The rescue my bf is going through does a prison program. So, before he gets the dog it'll have gone through 9 weeks of training and adjustment off the track. It'll come with basic commands (sit, stay, down, heel, etc), house trained, and crate trained. So, I think it'll be good to get a dog that already has some solid basics. He also can take his dog to work, so it won't have too much alone time.

He lives in an apartment. But my house has a fenced yard (6ft wood fence with no gaps) that will hopefully eventually be something nice for the dog.

khall
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 1313
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 1:47 am

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby khall » Fri Aug 16, 2019 2:31 am

All of the sight hounds I dealt with when a vet tech and with personal dogs (we had a part ridgeback for 13 yrs, 95 lbs of love) I enjoyed handling. They were all lovely dogs (greyhound, saluki, whippet and our part RR). Cat testing is always recommended, though our RR went from wanting to eat the cats with training lived for years with an outdoor indoor barn cat(s) no problems. Recall was an issue on our RR, but he was able to loose on the farm for the most part. The sight hounds I dealt with all loved people of any shape or size. RR can be a bit different but ours was part and absolutely never met a stranger, was not as welcoming with strange dogs though.

If I was set up differently here on the farm I would have a retired greyhound. My DH does not like the looks of them though. One retired grey that one of the vets I worked with owned was quite large at 80 lbs, a big boy.

redsoxluvr
Herd Member
Posts: 338
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 12:02 am

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby redsoxluvr » Fri Aug 16, 2019 5:25 am

My sister does greyhound rescue and has had many come through her doors. She has not had any that have had issues with cats or other small pets.
However, there was a definite transition period when her current greyhound moved to my farm. My dogs are expected to heed when they are off leash and the greyhound had always been on a lead. She had to learn recall as she had none and had no idea what being off leash meant.

That being said, she is a smart dog and figured out quickly that come means NOW and no dawdling. She also had to learn how to be around the smaller livestock as she had no idea what they were and had to learn they were off limits. She never chased them or showed aggression per se, but we have hard rules on my farm. Livestock are to be ignored without exception unless something is being herded. ( I have cardigan corgi working dogs who herd but they are the only ones allowed to interact with livestock.) It took her a month or so to understand that no means NO. No whining, no staring, no pacing. At my farm, livestock are to be treated with the same interest as a rock on the side of the road. They are there but that is as far as it goes. Yes, I am a hard ass with my zero tolerance rules but I hate it when people allow their dogs to chase or savage livestock. I have taken dogs from every possible situation - castoffs I found on the highway, rescued puppy mill dogs and even fancy purebred show dogs. They can all learn, and they do. Now my dogs regularly have my hens or goats loose next to them and they do not give them a thought. The dogs do give the goats a wide berth, but in their defense the goats have horns and are absolutely willing to drop a dog that gets too close.

Truthfully the greyhound is a couch potato. She goes out to feed with my pack and will burn off a couple of laps around my barn area at warp race dog. Once she is done, she is back on the couch. She is a kind dog and learns quickly. One thing I didn't know is that the dogs physically cannot sit. I have no idea why. I have never seen the dog sit even one time and have been told by several of the greyhound people that they cannot. She stands, lies curled up or flat out. She hardly barks at all. She did have a few issues with housetraining initially but was solid within about a month. I think she raced like 15 (?) times. She is quite tall but weighs around 50-60 lbs.

I would not seek one out, as my focus is herding dogs but she is a pleasant, agreeable dog all the same. She is fine with strangers and really is kind of like a large cat.

khall
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 1313
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2015 1:47 am

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby khall » Fri Aug 16, 2019 4:37 pm

I did forget to add that grey hounds (the lighter sight hounds period) are tricky with anesthesia. That was a big concern when I was a vet tech because of their low body fat content and their very muscled bodies.

NancyP
Novice
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:51 pm

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby NancyP » Wed Aug 21, 2019 12:15 am

Not sure about the varied footing... I'm sure it would be fine... just have to be watchful of the thin skin.. nicks and scrapes might be an issue. Mine run under low cedar tree branches in our small yard and when we walk they are in and out of bushes with no issues.
Our yard is small... 'U' shaped ...maybe 50' long x 15' wide. The 2 ends maybe 30' x 20'? They can zoom up and down there easily...and they can spin and turn on a dime! Lots of fun.

We have 4' chain link on one part of our yard and 5' welded mesh on the rest. I've not have any of mine ever try to jump. Only very occasionally do they even jump up with their paws.

Indoor running cats could be problematic, but tell your Group about this and they should be able to weed out the very prey driven dogs. There is no way my new Spanish boy could deal with a running cat, but he is not a retired racer. he was rescued from the streets of Spain.

I believe the Prison Programs are very good. I've heard they have greyt results.

Yes... they have issues with anesthesia.

Yes... the CAN sit. They just don't like it...the way their tail lays plus the rear thigh muscles are huge.
I have taught 3 of my 5 to sit. Sid the Irish boy prefers to just lay down. He will lay anywhere! The Therapy Dog testing does not require sit. Kibo the new Spanish fellow is still settling in, but I intend to teach him to sit!

piedmontfields
Bringing Life to the DDBB
Posts: 2125
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:41 pm
Location: E Tennessee USA

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby piedmontfields » Wed Aug 21, 2019 12:44 am

Thanks for the details. Truly, my worry with having sighthounds in our current environment is that they would slice their skin open. I know that sounds horrid, but it is a real possibility. The whippets I've known in rural environments seem to do fine, though.

BTW, my English Pointers also are not that fond of sitting, due to general bony-ness---but they (mostly) will do it when requested.

blob
Herd Member
Posts: 410
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:37 pm

Re: Any greyhound people?

Postby blob » Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:26 am

"sit" is one of the commands my bf's future greyhounds should have learned in the prison program. Though, we were warned that some tend to 'cheat' on their sit and either crouch or just go lie down with the head up and when you say 'down' they put their head down. ha! Lie or sit, I don't care--as long as they know some command that involves them settling down in one location.

He's been matched with a 2 year old female (15 races under her belt). She's white and red (mostly white). We don't have a ton of info about her yet, but we will start getting updates through the prison program soon. All we know is that currently her new trainer is working on hand feeding to build trust and that she's settled in easily.


Return to “The Observation Lounge”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 13 guests