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Feeling Sad Today -


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I am really having an internal conflict today. We are fostering Rocket with the intent to adopt him but I am starting to have doubts.

He is a gentle dog and he loves to follow me around the house, but I don't seem to get much affection from him. He growls if I sit next to him while he is on his bed. He likes to be near us but isn't a cuddler. I feel terrible admitting this, but I hoped he would be more affectionate.

Is this typical Grey behavior? I love him but am not sure he is a perfect match.

 

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I know you will get a lot of great advice from a lot of people, so I will just post a few things. Rocket will not instantly fall in love with you. Give him some time to get used to being in a home, and your routine. His world is upside down right now and he needs you to be consistent, calm and steady. Do not sit next to him on the bed yet. Your are in his "space". Let him approach you for pets. Let him learn to trust you. He may never be a cuddler, but that doesn't mean he doesn't love you. My boy doesn't cuddle but will beg for belly rubs all day long. He is my goofy love bug. My girl will cuddle and she is my heart. Give Rocket some time to settle in. His personality will change. It took my boy, Kyle about 6 months to figure out he wasn't a foster anymore. Good luck with Rocket. I hope it works out for you both.

<p>Mom to Kyle (Diehard Kyle) & Angel Gracie (KB's Sankey) Foster Mom for AFG

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It can take a long time for his personality to emerge...we've had Ben for 8 years and he still continues to change over the years. His last quirk is head rubs. He loves to have his whole head rubbed. Last year it was butt tickles.

 

Please note even after settling in more Rocket may not become a cuddler. We have 3 greyhounds now and none of them lay down beside us and cuddle, however, all 3 allow us to come to them and cuddle.

 

I wanted a greyhound to jog with me...hasn't happened yet and may not ever happen. The point I'm trying to make is that is may or may not happen and you need to decide if you can live with that. We often get so caught up in "expectations" that we miss other things they do that can bring us greyt joy.

 

Greyhounds are pretty independent and I think many people attach human emotions to aloofness. For example, we adopted a female 3 weeks ago and I can see how folks who do this may consider her "sad". She just follows Ben and Brooke around and really doesn't express a lot of "emotions". Yet, I see it as a greyhound who is fitting in seamlessly, no issues, and is learning to trust us. I know she is attached to us, simply because she now eats when called, loves to go on walks and for car rides, and always greets us at the door.

 

It takes a lot of courage to admit this, and I applaud you for that. In answer to your question, his behaviour sounds perfectly normal to me. Only you can decide whether or not to keep him in case he never becomes a cuddler. I admit I have never had to deal with this, I accept them as is (which isn't suppose to sound judgemental) so it's not a question I've had to deal with.

 

My other point is if you tend to attribute human emotions to a dog, you'll likely be wrong and get distressed over it. Has anyone suggested reading books? There's a wealth of information in books such as "The Other End of the Leash" or "How to Speak Dog", books that are geared towards all breeds, not just greyhounds.

Jan with precious pups Emmy (Stormin J Flag) and Simon (Nitro Si). Missing my angels: Bailey Buffetbobleclair 11/11/98-17/12/09; Ben Task Rapid Wave 5/5/02-2/11/15; Brooke Glo's Destroyer 7/09/06-21/06/16 and Katie Crazykatiebug 12/11/06 -21/08/21. My blog about grief The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not get over the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same, nor would you want to. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

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Don't judge a greyhound by his bed behavior. My first greyhound was very protective of his bed. When he was on his bed he would growl at people who came within a foot or two. If his growl was not heeded he would jump up and run off. He would not tolerate being touched while sleeping on his bed. He would snap at people touching him while sleeping on his bed. Sleeping elsewhere was no problem, you just didn't bother him when he was on his bed. This behavior lasted most of his life. However he was a very loving dog when not on his bed. He had no trouble sharing the couch when sleeping. He would even try to get in your lap if you were sitting on the couch. He loved being cuddled. Just not when he was on his bed.

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Chase would growl at us too when we wanted to sit next to him. He even snarled at me in the face one when I tried to get close for a picture. I was heartbroken and Ill admit it, I cried.

 

He really bloomed with time. He still doesn't love a cuddle when he is laying down and I feel he gets uneasy when I sit next to him if he is lying down but he will come for hugs and never ending pettings and kisses.

 

We have had him for 6 months now. I guess it takes time. You can either give him time, or if cuddling is unconditional for you, maybe he needs a family that fits his personality more. You could have nice surprises down the road...but maybe not. It's your decision.

 

x

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This is a bit silly. How long has Rocket been with you? How would you feel about a person who acted like your best friend after spending a small amount of time with you? It would be weird no? And here we are talking about a different species with a communication gulf much greater that that between humans that are strangers to each other.

 

Cut the dog some slack - its early days yet.

 

The growling? Why should the dog trust you? How long a track record do you have with this dog to earn it's complete trust? I am guessing you missed the dog asking you to keep your distance when he was down and yet you still approached. Of course he growled. There are some dogs that cozy up right away but most don't.

 

But... you have a dog that follows you around the house. To me this is the most important sign that an incredible relationship with a Greyhound is about to begin. I have a Greyhound that when he wanted his space growled, and barked and snapped - he can be an absolutely terrifying creature. But he always followed me and to this day he will not let me out of his sight and as a result of this characteristic and his particular disposition has the manners and off leash reliability of a well trained Border Collie.

 

As for the snuggling, it took 18 months but this finally happened:

 

hesteratthebikerace.jpg

 

If you don't have the patience than maybe it is the wrong dog for you - nothing wrong with that. But you may also find that a longer term investment may yield a greater dividend in the end.

Edited by KickReturn
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I had to readjust some of my hopes and expectations when I adopted Rudy, too. Grey Talk helped a lot, as well as reading the book recommended to me by my group, The Other End of the Leash by Patricia McConnell. I have had dogs since I was a kid, and though I knew dogs better than the average person there was still some eye-opening insight in that book for me.

 

This also has been linked a lot, but it really helps see things from an ex-racer's point of view. Understanding better, for me, made all the difference.

 

http://www.gpa-az.com/gilley.html

 

They are special dogs, but because they haven't lived a life of being a pet since puppyhood the adjustment takes some time and patience. I wish the best both for you and for Rocket.

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Thanks for all the wonderful feedback!

Honestly, I think I am just fearful of signing the adoption papers. I have had some bad experiences in the past - one dog I had bit my son in the face and another bit everyone!! Rocket is really a fantastic dog - great with all kids, all adults, all dogs, and he seems to have a low prey instinct.

He follows me around the house, has started to play and lets me hug and kiss him when he is standing up. It seems his only issue is that he growls if I sit next to him on his bed. He is fine if I pet him while he is on his bed - as long as I don't sit on his bed.

All of your comments put things in perspective for me - he is being very loving. I'm just used to having a small dog (yorkiepoo) that I can pick up and snuggle with. I ultimately hope that he will put his head on my lap and maybe even get on the couch with me to snuggle.

For now, I am grateful for the wonderful dog that he is.

Just airing my concerns actually made me realize how much I do love him.

 

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Guest IrskasMom

Morty is my Boy and he lets me know it very subtle by laying his Head on my Lap or he wags his Tail and brings me his Toys that he loves me . But really snuggle he does not. I had him for close to 8 Years now.

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Just wondering, did you own another breed of dog before Rocket? Or did you have a really affectionate dog growing up? If you've never had greyhound before, they can definitely seem aloof and disinterested. It's not just Rocket. Greys are very sensitive and not the kind of dogs who are always tail-wagging-in-your-face, like a lab or a retriever. They're not for everyone, and if you decide Rocket isn't the dog for you, that's totally fine. At that point, though, you may want to consider a different breed. Any other greyhound is going to come with the similar quirks/issues.

 

Also, I want to add that the dogs you see out at Meet and Greets are usually dogs who have been in homes for a long time- they're friendly and happy because they've been socialized to be that way. When I first got Henry, I felt ripped off because he wasn't like the dogs I had met at Meet and Greets. I kept thinking, why didn't they just give me a normal one?! We had doubts that we could make him happy, and like you, considered returning him. But after about six months, lots of socialization, and several trainjng classes, he was a totally different dog. I guarantee it will get better if you commit 100% to making it work. But it does take a lot of patience and time, some more than others.

 

Good luck with your decision.

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Thanks for all the wonderful feedback!

Honestly, I think I am just fearful of signing the adoption papers. I have had some bad experiences in the past - one dog I had bit my son in the face and another bit everyone!! Rocket is really a fantastic dog - great with all kids, all adults, all dogs, and he seems to have a low prey instinct.

He follows me around the house, has started to play and lets me hug and kiss him when he is standing up. It seems his only issue is that he growls if I sit next to him on his bed. He is fine if I pet him while he is on his bed - as long as I don't sit on his bed.

All of your comments put things in perspective for me - he is being very loving. I'm just used to having a small dog (yorkiepoo) that I can pick up and snuggle with. I ultimately hope that he will put his head on my lap and maybe even get on the couch with me to snuggle.

For now, I am grateful for the wonderful dog that he is.

Just airing my concerns actually made me realize how much I do love him.

 

 

 

As has been pointed out you have a dog that may have never in its life been approached by any person when it was down. Please, please show the utmost respect for your dog in this situation. Never discourage the growling - you want Rocket to be able to tell you if he is uncomfortable when someone is too close. Do not be upset when he growls at you. Instead be proud of his spirit and his desire to communicate with you.

 

You will certainly survive for the next few months without touching him or sitting on his bed when he is down. In a matter of time he will probably reach out to you with his paw and then roach and demand you rub his belly.

 

These are special animals. Many are serious, proud creatures and should be treated accordingly. But in time they may form a bond with you that is unmatched by any other pet.

Edited by KickReturn
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Barbie is not a cuddler either, I have had her 4 years and I was so overjoyed when she came and snuggled up to me on the bed when we were on holidays recently. She will also lie between my legs now. Despite her not being a hugely cuddly, wag in your face dog.... she is my heart dog. I have connected to her in more important ways. She knows exactly what I want from her most of the time. All of my foster greyhounds have been waggly bodied cuddlers though! There are lab-like affectionate greys out there but it's not really part of my criteria for choosing a dog.

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Really depends on what you want in a dog. Nothing wrong with being a good foster home and not keeping this one yourself, although I know it would be difficult to see him go to another family.

 

It's not uncommon for a new dog of ANY breed to be a bit touchy about his/her sleeping spot; many get over this with time and familiarity but some always want "let sleeping dogs lie."

 

Affection-wise, I've had greyhounds who became more demonstrative as they settle in and greyhounds who didn't. My newest girl has wanted to snuggle and kiss from the beginning but even she can't hold a candle to, say, a golden retriever or a boxer.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

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Our first greyhound Celeste was the ultimate cuddle hound with zero space issues from Day 1. She came right off the track that way. We were spoiled.

 

Our second greyhound Darcy spent her first six years living in track kennels. She was aloof and had major space issues. Personally, I'm glad we stuck with her. Watching her blossom into the dog we have today has been so rewarding. I remember how thrilled I was when we caught her in her first roach - almost a year after we adopted her (Celeste was roaching on Day 1). Or, the first time she willingly hopped onto the sofa to snuggle - probably took closer to two years. Now, almost seven years later, Darcy is the dog that is the first one to greet me at the door, loves to lay next to me on the sofa, steals our bed whenever she has the chance, etc.

 

Bottom line... greyhounds are individuals. BUT... if you're willing to be patient, they may just surprise you.

Laura with Celeste (ICU Celeste) and Galgos Beatrix and Encarna
The Horse - Gracie (MD Grace E)
Bridge Angels Faye Oops (Santa Fe Oops), Bonny (
Bonny Drive), Darcy (D's Zipperfoot)

 

 

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Guest grey_dreams

... one dog I had bit my son in the face and another bit everyone!! ...

 

Have to chime in here - the problem may not be with the dogs but with the way you and your family interact with the dogs. It is incredibly unusual for dogs to bite without first giving warning signals (as far as I know, it only happens when there is a brain tumor or brain trauma that causes the dog to become kind of crazy and non-functional). Whether you decide to keep Rocket or not, it would be very good for you to learn to read dog body language and dog signals so that you can understand how to read if they are warning you that they are uncomfortable or being put into a position where they perceive that they have to defend themselves.

 

Here are some links with pictures that would be useful for you and your kids:

Body language of fear in dogs

How to tell if a dog doesn't like hugs and kisses

How not to greet a dog

Dog language signals

Dog signals

And this

 

Lots of greyhounds love kids! But it's still important to learn how to read dog language.

 

Edited to add: Humans are primates that are all about grabbing things with their hands and clutching things that they grab. Primates show affection by clutching things and smothering them in their chest. Dogs are a different species with different sensibilities. Living with dogs is incredibly rewarding. Most dogs learn to read primate and come to understand that we don't mean any harm when we grab and clutch and coo and smother. We can grow so much if we learn to read dog in return.

Edited by grey_dreams
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Guest debster

I second all the suggestions for reading "The Other End of the Leash" by Patrica McConnell. It really opened my eyes to how I communicate with dogs (and also let me know that most people have no clue how to act around or train one). You will learn what is considered polite in dog society, and what is considered rude. It will put his space growling into perspective and help you read the signs of when he is uncomfortable.

 

I'm used to other breeds too, and reading this topic was a good refresher to how different greyhounds are. I do wish my boy would cuddle too, but he hasn't figured out the couch yet. Follow your heart: Your second post says that you love this dog. Is no cuddling truly a deal-breaker? Obviously, if your child is very young, you may want to think about if the dog can be allowed to have his personal space while lying down.

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Guest Waterdog66

In the short time you have been here it seems to me that you really love Rocket. THIS IS exactly what ROCKET NEEDS.

 

I believe that as adopters of retired racers, it is our part of the bargain to provide a loving home for them and from what I can tell, he has that.

 

...

From my short experience with Audrey, (4 Months) it seems that as long as we were consistent in our actions toward her (especially showing respect and affection) she came to realize that we can all be trusted. Now she actively seeks out this affection. Sometimes she will seek us out to just be in the room with us, and other times she will actively pander for strokes; treats and other forms of attention. She is genuinely happy to see each of us when we have been gone and will great us at the door like some long lost friend.

 

As long as we continue being consistent it is my hope that our relationship with her will continue to grow and she will come to realize that our love for her is unconditional.

It all just takes time but for Audrey or any other adopted hound, that is potentially a lifetime of happy memories.

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Our first boy was never a cuddler, but I could lay on his bed with him and just relax. I tried this with our second grey - our lovely girl - and she snarled at me right away! I quickly learned that not every grey wanted to snuggle on their bed. She was, however, the most affectionate grey we've had. She spent quite a while every day standing next to my dad's recliner, his arm wrapped around her body and her head resting over his arm. If he didn't assume the right position right away, she'd rub herself all over his chair. She head-butted mom and me for pets and face snuggles. She play-bowed and did zoomies around the living room. She howled at the drop of a hat - particularly if we were laughing! She was the sweetest girl and such a little love bug, but we could never lay on her bed with her. After she'd been with us a couple years, she relaxed enough to the point that we could sit next to her bed and give her rubs and loves, but never ON her bed. As long as there was an inch of floor between us and her bed, she was content! :lol Of course there's no guarantee, but just because you can't cuddle him on his bed doesn't mean he won't be the biggest sweetie once he settles in more :)

Edited by Roo

Mom of bridge babies Regis and Dusty.

Wrote a book about shelter dogs!

I sell things on Etsy!

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Even our puppy is not a cuddler. Both hounds are happy to have us come down to their beds and snuggle, and they will both come looking for ear scritches. But neither of them will climb up on the couch and cuddle. Kili will climb up on the couch with us but essentially doesn't really want to be touching. She has on rare occasion come up on the couch if I am laying there for a nap and snuggled up against me for a snooze. But that's rare. Summit never cuddles.

 

But they show in other ways how happy they are to see us. They just show affection in different ways than other breeds. I don't really like clingy dogs myself, so I enjoy their hands off approach. :)

Kristie and the Apex Agility Greyhounds: Kili (ATChC AgMCh Lakilanni Where Eagles Fly RN IP MSCDC MTRDC ExS Bronze ExJ Bronze ) and Kenna (Lakilanni Kiss The Sky RN MADC MJDC AGDC AGEx AGExJ). Waiting at the Bridge: Retired racer Summit (Bbf Dropout) May 5, 2005-Jan 30, 2019

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Thanks everyone! Rocket is very attached to me - he follows me everywhere and misses me when I am gone. He loves when I pet and hug him and he comes when I call him.

I guess I was just thinking something was wrong that he wouldn't let me sit on his bed. Now,I see that there isn't anything wrong with him at all. In fact, I think he is amazingly sweet and gentle. So glad that I have all of you to ask.

:nod I do love him - I think I am ready to sign those papers !

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I have no advice whatsoever. We adopted our first greyhound two weeks ago and we have had similar issues. I just wanted to offer my support. I know how difficult it is to be in this position, especially when you have children involved.

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Payton, The Greyhound (Palm City Pelton) and Toby, The Lab
Annabella and Julietta, The Cats
At the Bridge - Abby, The GSD

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As K9Soul mentioned, the Gilley article http://www.gpa-az.com/gilley.html is fabulous and I think it should be 'required reading' for all 'newbies'.

 

As well, pretty much anything my Patricia McConnell is good.

 

Time is your friend.....In 6 months you won't recognize the hound you have today

:)

 

Nancy...Mom to Sid (Peteles Tiger), Kibo (112 Carlota Galgos) and Mario (2nd Chance Rescue).   Missing Casey, Gomer, Mona, Penelope, BillieJean, Bandit, Nixon (Starz Sammie),  Ruby (Watch Me Dash) and especially  Nigel (Nigel), waiting at the Bridge

 

 

SKMwinter.jpg

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As far as greyhounds go the bed thing is pretty typical. It seems that some greys have issues, others don't, etc. Walter is my first grey and his behavior and showing he loves me is very different from my other dogs. In a way, I think he loves me more than the other dogs did because of his background and all the crazy stuff we do (we travel a lot). I've had him for a little over two years now and he loves butt scratches and ear rubs. He also rubs on me when I come home and puts his head on me when he wants something. He follows me around at the dog park (not so much at home because my apartment is small so he knows where I am) and this summer when I wasn't going to bed early enough, he would whine in my face and then go to bed as if to say, "Mom! It's bed time!!!" Once you learn greyhound you'll realize that Rocket loves you, he is just telling you in a language you haven't learned yet.

7218108076_e406044464_t.jpg 7004700518_27fa752995_t.jpg Walter (Windy Walker) and Ernie (PG Ernest) @WalterWallerson and IG: WalterandErnie 7150803233_d0700ccbdc_t.jpg 7004711314_ceba54665a_t.jpg

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