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Outdoor Greyhounds


Guest peachroomtom
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Guest peachroomtom

Hi all, I need some advice with my hounds!

 

As both myself and my wife work during the day we always leave our greyhounds in the conservatory with free run of the garden which they have always been more than happy with.

 

At this time of year we leave the conservatory door cracked open with a heater on to keep them warm with a nice sofa and a bed to make sure they are comfortable. We also put their coats on.

 

Recently I have put a greenhouse up in the garden and put a few old duvets down as they seem to enjoy spending time in there as they love to be outside. The problem is that they now seem to enjoy spending their time in a cold greenhouse instead of a warm and comfortable conservatory. Is this normal?

 

I'm concerned they will be too cold over the winter if they decide to stay in the greenhouse all day. If I make the greenhouse of limits they are likely to just sit outside all day and get wet if it rains. I have considered putting their crates in the greenhouse with thick blankets over which will hopefully make it more cosy in there.

 

Does anyone else have experience of keeping their greys outside at this time of year during the day or have any ideas?

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I have one non-grey that I have to convience to come in no matter what the weather,,, I think dogs,, like children don't always know what is best for them and as parents it is our job to keep them safe,, I live in the mountains of western Pa. where night time lows are already in the teens,,, daytime highs about 40 degrees, on a sunny day ...this being said,,,my fear would be in one of them becoming ill,, as greys are not "ouside" dogs,,

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I think to answer this question properly, we need to know where you are, geographically.

 

Whether your dogs will be safe outside in the conditions you have arranged for them depends on many factors - weather, wildlife, access to your garden by people and stray dogs, and also whether or not your dogs are likely to see something to chase and go through the glass of the greenhouse (which would be my big worry, if they were unattended out there) because if they did, they'd almost certainly cut themselves badly and may bleed to death before you got home.

 

I understand what you're saying, and in a way your set-up seems pretty good - although in your circumstances many people have installed a doggy door to the conservatory so as to keep the heat in better and the dogs safer. Like you, though, I'd worry about the greenhouse.

 

Most dogs will come indoors when they're too cold, but some won't. And I wouldn't do it if they didn't have access to the conservatory as well, in case conditions inside the greenhouse became either too cold, or indeed, too warm. In fact, in some climates (including England in the summer), the conservatory itself might well become a heat death-trap for them, and would be as bad as leaving them inside a locked car on a summer's day.

 

So .. where are you? :)

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Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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My concern is the space heater. I'm guessing you're not in the United States, based on the use of the term "conservatory" which is not something most of us have--

 

Space heaters are extremely dangerous IMHO. There is no such thing as a safe one as far as I'm concerned. Year after year, houses burn down after a space heater goes on the fritz.

 

Is there some reason you can't have your dogs in the house with a dog door?


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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Guest peachroomtom

I'm in Devon, England.

 

The garden is a courtyard garden with a minimum of 6ft wall running around the outside and a lockable, 6ft gate at the bottom of the garden which we lock when we go to work. There are no local cats and nothing ever comes into the garden so no worries of them ever chasing anything and crashing into the greenhouse. If there was any danger of them crashing into it then I wouldn't have put it up, plus it is tucked away in a corner.

 

They have a dog door in the conservatory but refuse to use it and we can't leave them in the house all day as they wont go outside to toilet if it is cold or raining as it is at the moment.

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I should have guessed you were in England by the use of the word 'conservatory'! :P

 

I think what I'd do in your situation is put some serious training into getting them to use the dog door. If you use the search here on GT for dog door training, or 'doggie door' training, you will probably find some useful threads. A lot of dogs refuse to use them at first - not that I have any personal experience in training them for that, but from what I've read on here, it seems to be so. :)

 

Sounds as if you have a great garden set-up! But seriously, I know that Devon can get to be seriously cold in winter, so I wouldn't let them use the greenhouse all day during the cold months. JMHO.

 

Oh, and what type of space heater do you have? Again, just my humble opinion, but I wouldn't leave them alone with a gas, paraffin or halogen heater, or anything where the heat source is a flame or easily accessible by a tail, or if it's possible to knock it over. ;)

 

It may be that the available space heaters are different in the US - I know the electricity supply is - but here, I've read that the biggest single cause of house fires from appliances is where tumble driers have caught fire.

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest peachroomtom

Hi Silverfish

 

I will have another go with the dog door but my hounds just aren't happy with it. One of them was very badly treated and finds any training very difficult and the other is just pretty clueless! The garden works great during the spring, summer and autumn but it's just the winter I worry about. The conservatory is at the back of the house so after 9:30am is in the shade of the house all day so there is no chance of them over heating in the summer plus they wont go in there anyway! I think they may have just got too used to sunning themselves outside all summer and don't want to come inside!

 

The space heater is a brand new electric fan heater that oscillates and also has a cut out switch in case it gets knocked over which there is no risk of as it is on top of the dishwasher. I also have a petcam so I can log into the camera from my work PC and watch them basically sleep all day!

 

I must admit that when I do come home from work I always check them and their tummies are always warm so I'm not too worried at the moment but I would just rather they stayed in the conservatory all day! Maybe it has something to do with leaving Radio 1, maybe they prefer the peace and quiet the greenhouse has to offer!

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Guest fandogs

When we raised our hounds from birth, (Pennsylvania) we had them kenneled in large indoor and outdoor spaces that they had equal access too. The kennels all had hinged metal doors that the dogs were taught, or learned to enter and exit through.

Inside the kennel, the floors had thick, hard rubber mats, with lots of straw for bedding. The heat source was a heat lamp, hung over head, for each kennel room. It kept the inside run at approximately 55 degrees. (A bit colder on super cold days) and warmer on warm days).

BUT.. many of our dogs enjoyed being outside, even when it was icy, snowy or frigid.

ALL of our dogs, grew an undercoat of hair. It made them look very fuzzy. But obviously kept them warm.

I suggest that if your dogs are outside enough, they too, will grow a layer of undercoat that will keep them warm.

(Just my thoughts).

Maxine

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Sounds like the heater is an excellent choice and the webcam is a great idea! :thumbs-up

 

I'd still have another go at training for the doggy door, simply because it would be good all round and a little peace of mind, too. Have you tried clicker training? Works really well for Sid, and I like the philosophy, too.

 

Our first grey was thought to be a travellers' dog and had definitely been badly treated. With patience he actually turned out to be the most trainable and accomplished dog we've had! I think once we gain their trust and they learn to please us, there's no limit to the love of a previously abused dog. :wub:

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Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest Lovey_Hounds

I have a friend who has greyhounds who live with 24 hour a day access to the outside (even in winter) they have dog runs they are heated inside but they have access to the outside runs anytime they want, they have grown thick undercoats and are very plush looking. If you were to have your hounds going in and out i would get them used to it slowly so they can grow the coats they need to stay warm.

I have a 2 year old greyhound who LOVES to be outside no matter how cold it is, it started snowing last night and she was standing at the window barking to be let out, she has spent about and hour outside playing today she only came in is bcause i made her. she has not grown a thick coat yet but the cold doesnt bother her one bit.

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Most greyhounds in the US grow up living outside 24/7 with a shared communal dog house so I wouldn't worry too much about their choice of the greenhouse.

 

As far as the dog door, I'd tape up the flap then take the least likely to go thru dog out in the yard while leaving the other one in (someone holding him/her). Then have that human come out thru the front and into the backyard vis the gate. Then everyone have a party in the yard with outside dog. Should work. After he/she goes through a few times you can duct tape a towel so it half covers where the flap would be if it wasn't taped up and do a few more runs, then let the flap down. Then reverse dogs and repeat. This in't a one day thing. Also odds are good that once you can get one to go through the other will follow.

 

Mine won't go outside to potty either if it is cold and raining. They keep sticking their noses out and guage how bad it is raining vs how bad they have to go then they finally go. They never potty in the house but have held it amazing lengths of time in extended bad rainstorms.

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Guest Nuthatch

If I was made to listen to Radio 1, I would sit in the garden... Mine listen to Radio 2 all day, it aint that much better these days.

 

All the greyhound kennels which I go past to get to the one we use have essentially outside runs with a shed in or are unheated sheds. Surely part of it is if the dogs develop thick undercoats, don't ask them to sit in a centrally heated house in the evening.

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Dog door training time again.

Remove the flap for a bit or find a way to pin it up/open/out of the way. Get them used to going in and out of the door without a flap touching them. Once they are comfortable using it that way, you can try to drop the flap or find something else that is very light weight to hang in its place for a bit.

 

My Ryan was quick with learning that using the door on his own meant he could go out and pee without me having to open a door for him. Jet learned if she ducked under Ryan, he'd open the door for her and she'd not have to touch it. Years later, she still doesn't like the flap to touch her, but she uses it anyway.

Asking Jet if she wanted to go for a walk when she was outside and I was inside with her leash - that was what got her through on her own. Ryan worked well with treats at first. I had to push them both in and out a few times as well.

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