Greyhounds are affectionate, friendly dogs who thrive on attention and human companionship and make terrific pets. Raised with their littermates, where they competed for affection, Greyhounds love becoming the center of attention as household pets. Greyhounds do not usually make good watch dogs. Their friendly nature is not really very threatening. Greyhounds adapt well to life as pets and need no more than a romp in the backyard or a daily walk to keep them fit.
Males are 26 to 30 inches high, and weigh between 65-85 pounds. Females are 23 to 26 inches high, and weigh between 50-65 pounds.
Greyhounds come in many colors – brindle, black, fawn, white or a combination of these colors. Grey, which is actually considered blue for the Greyhounds, is not very common.
Greyhounds have little oil in their skin, so they have minimal “doggy odor” and only need a bath when soiled. They also don’t shed much. Like any other dog, Greyhounds do need regular nail trims, as well as regular dental care.
Many people are under the misconception that females make better pets than males. When it comes to Greyhounds, the males make equally wonderful pets. We’ve never seen one neutered male Greyhound who has a predisposition to mount other dogs – many squat and don’t lift their leg. It may take longer to receive a female and there are many great male Greyhounds that need saving. An interesting fact is that typically the female is the dominant of the breed and may be less patient than the males.
The majority of the dogs will be between 2 and 6 years old. We often get dogs that are older than this and people might think that older dogs take a longer adjustment period. In reality, the older Greyhounds come into a home and often learn the house rules more quickly than a younger dog will!
These pure-bred athletes enjoy many years of good health. With proper care, they have a life expectancy of 12 years or more.
Since they are sight hounds and are oblivious to verbal commands, they will move toward an object on the horizon. Greyhounds must never be allowed outside unless they are on a lead or in a completely fenced or enclosed area. The automobile is the Greyhound’s “unnatural” enemy and neither the dog nor driver can react to a speeding Greyhound in time to avoid a lethal collision.
Our adoption fee is $200.00. The average cost of just spaying/neutering and dental (teeth cleaning) in the Kansas City area is $275.00 so the $200.00 (which also covers vaccinations and a lead and collar) does not even cover the medical costs incurred by KCREGAP to prepare greyhounds for adoption. Greyhounds, like any other dog, should be given regular veterinary care. As pets, Greyhounds eat no more than any other dog of comparable weight – 4 to 6 cups of dry kibble a day. They also love rice and vegetables in their food. It costs about $1.00 a day to feed a Greyhound. This may vary depending on dog food brand and feeding requirements.
Frequently an adopted Greyhound is completely housebroken right from the start. In their kennel environment they are “turned out” three or four times a day to relieve themselves. Therefore, racing Greyhounds are kennel-broken, which means they’re trained to go outside and keep their kennels clean. Let them out frequently at first, and they quickly learn that their new home is the place they keep clean and outside is where they go to relieve themselves.
Greyhounds are very gentle, patient dogs, but we have found they get along better with children over the age of 5 who have a clear understanding of rules about and respect for animals. Greyhounds do not tolerate pulling, poking or children falling or laying on them – even a gentle Greyhound has his limits! They do excellent with children over 5 who are loving and respectful. Children need to be taught manners around the dog, just as the dog must learn his or her manners around the house. REGAP will not adopt a Greyhound to a family with any child under the age of 5.
Docile in nature, Greyhounds are the original “couch potatoes” and get along well with both children and most other pets. Greyhounds are friendly by nature and socialize well as a result of encounters with other Greyhounds in the racing kennel. Cats are unknown to a Greyhound and a little extra time and care are required to make a happy home for all.
DON’T EVER LET A GREYHOUND OFF LEAD IN AN AREA THAT IS NOT TOTALLY ENCLOSED – LIKE A FENCED YARD!
Greyhounds are sight hounds and have 6,000 years of instinct that, if not on a leash, have instructed them to chase things. If a Greyhound gets loose and runs after a rabbit or squirrel, for example, they might harm themselves as they are focused on what they are chasing and ignore obstacles.
Lost dogs find their way home by smelling and since a sight hound does not have as keen a sense of smell as other breeds, a Greyhound that runs 40 miles per hour will be a long way away in a short period of time and may not be able to find his way home and back to his loved ones.
The Greyhounds’ “unnatural” enemy is the automobile. A driver simply cannot react to a dog running at a speed that might exceed that of the car! A Greyhound on the run has a high probability of being hit and killed by an automobile.
Greyhounds have no body fat and therefore no way to absorb the toxins in flea products that might be safe for other breeds. Flea collars can kill a Greyhound and only shampoos and dips with Pyrethrin (a natural, organic flea inhibitor) should be used. There are many new products on the market each year. Ask your KCREGAP representative which of these products are acceptable.
Yard chemicals are very dangerous to a Greyhound. A general rule of thumb to follow is to treat the Greyhound around chemicals like you would children. If chemicals can’t be totally avoided, make sure they are thoroughly watered into the soil and completely dry before allowing the Greyhound in the yard. Then, for a few days, leave the dog out only long enough for elimination.
THEY ARE MADE TO RACE OUTSIDE BUT THEIR NATURAL ENVIRONMENT IS IN THE HOME CURLED UP ON SOMETHING SOFT.
The lack of body fat on a Greyhound also leaves them with no insulation from the elements. Heat exhaustion in the summer and freezing in the winter can easily occur with a Greyhound. They have less protection than an unclothed human so use that as an environment exposure rule of thumb.