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Considering a Greyhound: Anyone have experience with them?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by IotaNet, Nov 28, 2010.

  1. My wife and I have been thinking about getting a dog for a while and we've been researching breeds.

    We both work jobs that keep us gone during the day and sometimes we are gone for weekends at a time. We do have a large home with a very large (unfenced) yard. We're not big "outdoorspeople" and are probably more "couch potatoes" than we should be. :meh:

    I haven't had a dog in 30 years but my wife has been a Dog person for her whole life. She's had everything from Sheepdogs to Jack Russell Terriers. (She's also a former equestrienne but that's another story.)

    We've been looking at Greyhounds and doing some deep research. So far, I like what I'm finding about the breed and we'll be attending a Greyhound Owners "Meet & Greet" today.

    Having said all of that ...

    Are there any Greyhound Owners here with thoughts/advice to share one way or another?
  2. JacoLesFlea


    Jun 16, 2006
    When I was leaving Minneapolis this past summer I saw a billboard advertising adopting greyhounds that nolonger raced. I cant remember the website but it seemed even more detailed than trying to adopt a kid. I notieced your in minnesota too. are you going thru this agency?
  3. I'm not sure which agency you're referring to (because there are several) but yes, today we'll be going to a Meet & Greet sponsored by this group: http://gpa-mn.org/index.php.
  4. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    Your life style actually doesn't sound too ideal for a greyhound. While greyhounds aren't as active as many people are lead to believe, they do need an outlet for their energy, and if you aren't willing to be outside (or can't be due to work) and run around with it some each day then you might want to rethink this breed.

    Greyhounds also enjoy chasing small game and other animals, so not having a fence could be a big negative on owning a greyhound unless you train him properly - and there's another problem right there. While greyhounds will generally respond positively to a trainer who's gentle with them, they aren't the easiest dog to train if you have no experience in training.
  5. That's great feedback and exactly the kind of thing we're looking for! :hyper:
    Have you enjoyed your Greyhound(s)? What has it been like living with one?
  6. hover


    Oct 4, 2008
    the only experiences I've had with greyhounds have been with post-racer adoptions...I've encountered on two different occasions couples who had adopted pairs of them. They are definitely not dogs to be really lax lay-around type, and need to expend their energy, as was said...and these pairs of dogs in particular were very skittish (loud noises were definitely triggers to their anxieties, one in particular would BOLT)...but otherwise great, otherwise gentle big huge dogs. I find them to be beautiful.

    TALL fences. a must.
  7. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    If you're both gone for the whole weekend, who's going to take care of the dog?

    I have no experience with owning a greyhound but my vet has a couple. She has told me that they cannot be let out without being on a leash or in a fenced in area b/c they will chase just about everything.

    I have a bull mastiff and she's the best dog I've ever owned. Great personality, great with kids, doesn't destroy the house, and she's basically a big couch potato . . . 135 lbs of love!!
  8. fixed it for you.
  9. I'll echo the sentiments about the dogs being fantastic, wonderful, loving, sweet dogs, but NEEDING a lot of time and space to RUN.

    They are not good indoor only dogs - they're fine inside, but need a lot of exercise to keep them happy.

    I hate to say this, but based on your description of your lifestyle, I'd recommend against greyhounds in your case. You need something that is more flexible in requirements for exercise/expenditure of energy.

    That said, I love greyhounds, and if I had a huge fenced in yard, would seriously consider adopting retired racers. That said, I'm stickin' with my two furry kids that need SOME exercise, then turn into furry couch potatoes. :)
  10. sloasdaylight

    sloasdaylight Banned

    Feb 4, 2009
    Tampa, Florida, US
    I was just thinking the same thing. That GPA website seems like a great resource, and based on it's FAQ section, your lifestyle and environment seems like it'd not be the best for a hound.
  11. That's what kennels are for, yes? I thought people did this all the time.

    FWIW, I may have over-emphasized the "couch-potato" part of our lives. We're not 400 pound sedentary fatties. It's just that we're not folks who run 5 miles a day ... or 2 miles a day ... or one mile a day. :bag:
  12. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    No problem :)

    Greyhounds are really gentle dogs and are generally very quiet and obedient. That said, many can and will respond erratically to loud noises - so being a musician might make this difficult if you enjoy practicing without headphones, or enjoy watching movies with the volume cranked.

    They also tend to do well with kids and other family pets as long as you have brought them up around kids and pets. If you haven't, however, they can and will go after small animals, and they can be a little aggressive towards kids who don't show them respect and care.

    As far as my dealings with greyhounds are concerned, I love them and think they are great pets - but I do tend to love dogs, in general :smug: For your life style, I would honestly suggest looking at other breeds. What others were you thinking about?
  13. Bipslapper

    Bipslapper Well Ahoy, Paloi

    Sep 20, 2009
    Cape Cod, MA
    My wife and I got married in 1992 and adopted a Greyhound that fall. He was a 4 yr old male, named Danny. Wonderful dog, mellow yet enjoyed a good run in a park near our house whenever possible. He did need to be walked on a leash and needed some time to adjust to "home life" (ie; stairs, getting on a couch, reflection in a mirror), but was always cool and loved people. We were fortunate that our neighbor had a female Greyhound, Tina, and Danny and Tina got along great. We would walk the dogs together and take them to a little league field on weekends to let them runaround the outfield for an hour or so. They loved to run, but also loved to crash in the evening.

    We had our first child in 1995 and Danny was great with having a baby in the house, in 1998 our second daughter was born and once again, Danny was interested in the baby but gentle at the same time.

    We had him for 9.5 years and finally his body gave out at the age of 14(he was large for a Greyhound) and I had to put him down on 9/11/2001. Definitely the worst day of my life so far.

    We waited a while and then decided to get another dog- this time a Jack Russell Terrier. Total 180 degree turn and that is a story for another time......

    Feel free to PM me with any questions about Greyhounds, they are fantastic dogs.
  14. snappytom


    Aug 17, 2005
    We currently have 2 Greyhounds. We got the first one (Kenny) when he was 2 1/2 years old, he is now 9. Never raced, had a fracture when he was a pup that kept him in the kennel. Very smart and affectionate dog, the brains of the operation.

    Hogan came about a year later when he was 3 1/2, he will be 10 in January. Raced in Alabama for almost 2 years where he won a few, retired when it was obvious he was just average.
    Completely different personality, he is a lovable idiot.

    Greyhounds are excellent dogs, very quiet and mellow. The do need excercise, but they are sprinters. Once they get a 10 minute run or a 1/2 hour brisk walk they are done. In extremely hot or cold weather they are content with much less activity. They are very good in a family enviroment, kids less than 5 should be monitored but a Greyhound will 99% of the time simply move away from an annoying child than do anything to harm them.
    You will need a fenced area to let them loose or be prepared to have them on a leash when they go out. They are sight-hounds so if they see a rabbit thousands of yards away (that we can't see) they may go for it. This depends on the dog, some are very prey-driven, some are not. Hogan will go after anything as he is very primal and reactive. Kenny thinks about every move before he makes it.

    If you are gone all day you will need to have them let out at least once during the workday (based on our experience). And weekends away can be tough also. We used to kennel our dogs (at the farm we adopted them from) when we went on vacation. But as they have gotten older and used to the home life the kennel experience became too much for them (not eating, coming home like zombies...). We now leave them home and hire the neighbor kid to come and let them out 4 times a day. It works out better for everyone.

    I had never had a dog before these, the kids talked me into it. We hopefully have another few years with them (avg life expectancy 12-15 years) and I have no regrets.

    Hogan on the left, Kenny on the right.
  15. I would not recommend a sighthound to anyone who doesn't have a very securely fenced yard big enough for the dog to run comfortably at top speed.

    I've never owned a greyhound but have met many of them, and they have all been very sweet and gentle dogs. One of my favorite breeds that I've met.
  16. Mr. Pickles

    Mr. Pickles Supporting Member

    Nov 11, 2006
    Dutchess County, NY
    We have an Italian Greyhound named Jasmine. The breed is small-ish but does need a lot of space to run. She loves escaping from our fenced yard and racing around with the neighbor's dog. This breed is very protective and loves chasing small game (cats and toy dogs included). She can be aloof - definitely not a cuddly lap-dog type.
  17. sloasdaylight

    sloasdaylight Banned

    Feb 4, 2009
    Tampa, Florida, US
    This is my experience as well. Our dogs aren't sight hounds exactly, but their mother was a feist, which is a squirrel hound, and if they see a small prey item, they're off like a shot. I can only imagine that a greyhound, a dog originally bred to course deer would be worse.
  18. a lady i know here rescues them and would probably answer any questions you have....if you google high speed hounds,her name is mikela.....she will remember me by my skye terrier sam....
  19. Went to the meet & greet and really enjoyed the dogs. Doing more research but haven't yet discovered any deal-breakers.
  20. First. Greyhounds don't need tons of room.
    Second. Ya gotta be around or like any dog, get bored and tear up the place.

    If you're gone a alot, it's not fair to the dog.

    Consider a cat instead.

    If I had a Greyhound, I'd name him Dobby and another one Kreacher.

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