A Residence Blog

Travel and adventure taking, memory and home making, parenting and play shaking, never faking, tales of family life.

A Residence Blog

Travel and adventure taking, memory and home making, parenting and play shaking, never faking, tales of family life.

10 Questions About Rehoming a Greyhound

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out 'Did he win anything?' to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

 

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out ‘Did he win anything?’ to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

Once I had the best chat with an elderly Scottish gentleman who told me stories of helping his Dad train a greyhound by cycling across the park with various treats tied to the back of his bicycle, then there is the lady across the road had a greyhound she says lived to be 19, and always stops to stroke Max. He is a great conversation starter.

 

1. Did he win anything?

Max aka Bower Hawk apparently won 20 of his 60 races at national level, which is pretty impressive, so I am told, I’ve never really been a fan. He had a knack of coming in from the back and winning, which made him an exciting dog to watch. His father was the legendary Westmead Hawk, the first animal to be given a waxwork at Madame Tussards.

2. Is he a ‘rescue’ dog?

That’s a tricky one, as any sport that involves betting is obviously open to abuse. As with all dogs, sadly I know people who have rescued racing greyhounds who have been badly treated, or cast aside when they couldn’t race.  But I have now met many greyhound trainers through forums, and read blog posts about their routines and dog’s days – it is clear many take much better care of their dogs than the average owner.

Max had a long wait in kennels to be rehomed, but kennels were what he was used to, it was adopting to life in a family home that too some practice, more on that in a minute.

Our impressions of Max lead us to believe that he has been very well trained and cared for, both as a racer and during his time with the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust while waiting for a home, and the vet concurs, so I generally say he was rehomed or adopted. This certainly made taking on a dog who has had a previous life really easy for us.

On one hand, Max is a very pampered pooch these days, he loves his new bed and soft blanket. And yes, I do tuck him in and cover him up with this lovely fleecy blanket at night.

On the other hand, I do sometimes wonder if he misses the excitement, the company of other dogs, the attention of his trainer, from his racing days,

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out 'Did he win anything?' to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

3. He must have so much energy, does he run around the house all day?

No, he sleeps, a lot, an awful lot. Greyhounds are sprinters, a quick dash and they are worn out.

I purposefully chose the greyhound breed because I work at home and I knew I wouldn’t cope with a dog that was too busy, yappy or chewy. Max sleeps most the day, in fact he is a lot like a cat.

His gorgeous and very comfortable new bed he was sent from Wayfair to review, I finally found some cool designs, I love the stag print, but there is also a hare print, which amused me, as I am always wondering if Max dreams about rabbits. The bed comes in lots of sizes, even big enough for a stretched out greyhound and it is great to have a more unusual design that matches the room.

4. Do greyhounds need lots of exercise, you must have to walk him lots?

It’s actually a myth that greyhounds need a lot of walks, two twenty minute walks a day is enough and Max walks beautifully on the lead. From time to time we take him somewhere enclosed where it is safe for him to zoom around off lead. Greyhounds can reach 40mph so its important they can’t bump into things, or become disorientated and get lost, and extendable leads are a complete no no as you can imagine!

He does do the odd bit of Yoga, downward dog is his favourite…

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out 'Did he win anything?' to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

5. Why does he have a coat on?

Greyhounds don’t have a lot of fat and feel the cold more than other dogs. Max loves his snug wax jacket.

He also feels the cold at night, but he has been sleeping brilliantly since we upgraded his bed and invested in a really warm blanket, no more trying to hop on my bed at 5am!

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out 'Did he win anything?' to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

6. Why has he got a tattoo in his ear?

I believe that was used to make sure the right dog was entered in the right race. People have also told me Irish dogs have tattoos in both ears, so maybe he is Irish.

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out 'Did he win anything?' to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

7. Is it true greyhounds can’t climb stairs?

Many racing hounds will not have had to encounter houses before, and things like stairs or French windows can take time to adjust to. It was the funniest thing to watch Max’s legs fly in every direction at first, but he soon cracked the stairs. He does tend to go up and down at speed, which can be a little unnerving the first time you see it, he never barks at the door, but he will come flying down to welcome me home, or to see who is at the door. Some owners stick stickers on French windows, to stop dogs running into them.

We rehomed Max about 2 years ago, when he retired from racing, via the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust. Little did I know how many questions I would answer about rehoming a greyhound on our daily walks, from workmen calling out 'Did he win anything?' to toddlers asking if he is a donkey, to people seriously considering adopting a greyhound wanting to know about food and walks.

8. How long did it take him to settle?

The first few days took some adjustment, Max didn’t like being on his own at night, so we moved his bed upstairs and he has been brilliant ever since. It is possible to teach greyhounds to sleep downstairs, we were just soft! He also had to learn how to behave around food, and although he is tall enough to steal from the table, he quickly learnt that putting his feet on the table to help himself wasn’t allowed. He was very quickly house trained thanks to advice from Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust.  I would be lying if I said there weren’t occasional accidents, but these are the result of missing a walk or being left alone for too long – our fault rather than Max’s.

He manages odd days alone, but generally we don’t leave him for more than 4 hours at a time, he loves to be where we are, and will make his bed on the floor of whichever room we are in. He also likes to have peace, greyhounds sleep very deeply, so he has a quiet corner of the house where we all know to leave him to himself.

9. Don’t greyhounds take up lots of room?

Greyhounds are tall dogs, but they are skinny and can also curl up very small. Max will take up the whole 4 person sofa if we let him, but we can equally fit 3 people and Max on the sofa when he curls up. Boot space is a consideration, especially for holidays, but we find we can still fill 1/2 of the estate car boot around him. He is so calm and quiet around the house, so he doesn’t feel like a big dog.

10. Don’t they eat a lot of food?

Max eats two mugs of dry food, twice a day – the vet says dry food is best for his teeth. Sometimes we give him bits of meat, fish, leftovers, eggs and cheese as a treat.

 

Black dogs get an unfair bad name

Having Max has been the most brilliant adventure, he is truly part of the family. I never liked people referring to depression as a black dog, because Max is quite the opposite, he calms me down when I am stressed, he is the kid’s first port of call after a long day at school. He keeps me company working at home and he encourages us all outdoors for some head space.

 

More information

Max came from the Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust, you can also find out more about rehoming in other areas from the Retired Greyhound Trust.

Max’s bed and blanket are from the range for pets at Wayfair, including funky pet beds from Danish Designs and this blanket.

 

Let me know if you have any more questions about rehoming a greyhound in the comments, and I will answer them, or tweet me @pennyalexander_

11 thoughts on “10 Questions About Rehoming a Greyhound

  • Anne Dalzell

    Love to hear about happy greyhounds. We found ours (Rusty) wandering the streets four years ago. From his tattoos we’ve been able to find that he’s had several owners and certainly not always had a great time. But he’s home now, we love and adore him, he is wonderful with our three babies (who are all under 4). He is lazy and greedy and an incredible character. We are so lucky to have our Rusty and you are so lucky to have gorgeous Max xx

    Reply
    • A Residence Post author

      Poor Rusty, so very glad he has a happy home now. As this illustrates, not all owners treat this gorgeous and gentle breed with the respect they deserve. They are wonderful with kids aren’t they, so patient, yet full of character!

      Reply
  • Over a Cuppa

    I do wish I took a photo of Penny the greyhound. Not seen them before which means may not again! They are so similar, though Penny isn’t keen on dogs but seemed to be fine with Lottie and Murphy and growled at Kit who is the most submissive dog ever!

    Murphy, despite being completely different size underneath his hairy coat he is greyhound build and is greyhound in some parts of his nature. Short bursts of running and exercise then sleep like a cat! xxx

    Reply
    • A Residence Post author

      Aw lovely to have a greyhound namesake, and to hear about your pack! I am so tempted to have another dog in the family! Murphy sounds gorgeous.

      Reply
  • DaisLikeThese

    This is spot on and almost feels as though I am reading about my own greyhound! Athough we actually got him as a rescue puppy from the Dogs Trust last year so he has never experienced racing. I still get asked the questions nearly every walk though!

    Reply
    • A Residence Post author

      Had to pop over to Twitter and ask you about greyhound puppies, they always look so sweet, but I have been told they are a handful!

      Reply
      • Kev

        We currently have 2 pups born in late October last year and they are an absolute nightmare. They are going to a home with two of our trustees in late April and that really can’t come soon enough!!! Although I am considered a greyhound advocate I would always advise anyone thinking of getting a greyhound pup to think long and hard before doing it as they are not easy at all.

        Reply
  • Kev

    Penny, thank you so much for adopting Max from us at Lincolnshire Greyhound Trust (LGT). Max is indeed an Irish bred who was very well looked after in his racing career and then when he came to us. We’re delighted we found him such a lovely home with your family and are always looking for good owners if anyone else is inspired by your post to consider adopting one. I’d also like to congratulate you on the article which is fair and balanced unlike a lot that can be seen on the internet. Thanks again 🙂

    Reply
  • Pingback: Pet Beds with Design Appeal - A Giveaway - A Residence

  • Pingback: How to play more with your dog, great games for dogs - A Residence

  • Eve

    Hi there, lovely account of Max. We rehomed a greyhound a couple of weeks ago and in general she has settled well. House breaking is not sorted yet but I can cope with the messes. What saddens me is that she wakes us up every morning with whining between 6.40-7 am. I know that’s not super early but having just got to the point where my kids can sleep in, it’s hard to think I’ll never have a lie in again while we have her. Sleep is very important to me, I sort of have big issues with it, without going into details, but this is kind of depressing me. It’s making the kids tired too. She sleeps downstairs and I don’t want her upstairs as if sure she’ll just keep us awake with clacking around on wood floors anyway, if she’s near us. Plus it’s not practical to keep the upstairs hazard free with all the kids stuff etc. Do you have any advice? Is it remotely likely that one day she will learn that 7am is a weekday start but it’s later on a weekend/holidays? I can’t imagine her getting that complicated a routine! Can I also look forward to 5am starts in the summer? Any advice would be welcomed.

    Reply

I'd love to hear what you think