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Possible Hot Topic, I Don't Know So Bear W/ Me


Guest Lisa_S
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Guest Lisa_S

I'm noticing that KJ has healed, round scars on her toe knuckles. Her nose also has a scar. Her bum and muscle part of upper legs is bare. (But skin is healthy. Her elbows are rubbed bare too.

Do I possibly have a skittish dog due to mistreatment? The rescue lady preached to me that this dog was not abused, adopting a grey is just that, not rescuing from anything.

I'm wondering otherwise given her demeanor at times and physical appearance.

And thank you on the growling advice! Dog will be up, alert and cognoscent before allowing kids near.

As for "toe scratching" her bum, I only meant that littlest dd would gently rub the dog to gently stir her. NO scratching or harsh touches, I assure you. :)

Thanks a million guys - I'm starting to wonder what is do w/ out you! Thanks for all the non-judgements too. I just love this girl and want her to know she's safe and loved.

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Guest greybookends

Greys have very thin skin. So normal play with other greys can result in tears and scaring. The same kind of play for another breed is a few missing hairs but in a grey it can require stitches . That is where most of the scars that are on greys come from .

 

As for the missing hair. That is normal in greys. Many are members of the naked belly and thigh club. For no reason other then they just have no hair there. Sometimes hair loss can occur with a thyroid problem.

 

I know that with all the bad press you hear about the racing kennels it is easy to think the worst when you see something you are not used to. Trust your adoption group. Most greys are simply retired. A reputable group would never put a true rescue with an inexperienced new grey owner because of the potential issues that may surface and require an experienced hand.

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"Bald thigh syndrome" is pretty common. Some greyhound events even have Baldest Butt contests, it's that common. Scars are also pretty common -- probably from when she was a puppy -- the pups stay together for a very long time and they can be ROUGH with each other. Really rough. It's also possible she wiped out on the track and picked up a scar or two.

 

I agree with the adoption lady. They aren't "rescued" (well, that does occur once in while -- Ebro, for instance -- or, more commonly, from bad adopters). Are you sure she's what you call skittish? Or is she just being a newly adopted, not quite sure of herself, greyhound? They are so NOT labradors, LOL.

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Scars or other marks are most likely from play as a puppy with other GH puppies. Rocket is missing the tip of an ear and it looks like it's been that way for a long time. He has one or two other small marks as well.

 

As far as the growling: We have a rule in our house even after 5 years. Rocket does not get petted or touched unless he is standing. This means he is awake. If he's lying down, he can be sleeping or groggy, even with his eyes open. We've found that "no petting unless standing" is the easiest way to teach kids or visitors the rules about Sleep Startle.

 

I have been bitten once, and so has a dog sitter - both time our own faults. We both thought he was awake when he wasn't. One of those large canine teeth through your hand is no fun, and the Animal Control Warden showing up is also not a fun time. This is the same boy who now roaches against my legs and goes to sleep, but I still call his name and wake him up before I move. That's his version of snuggling.

 

You will find that over the course of 12-18 months you will have a completely different hound from the one who walked in the door. it's a lot of fun to watch the changes.

 

Also, just an FYI - the word "rescue" is often a heated topic. When people ask if Rocket was rescued, I usually whisper and say "He's adopted, but we haven't told him yet." :bgeorge That diffuses the question most of the time.

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My 13 month old CKC show puppy who came home to me at 8 weeks has numerous scars already. One on her nose, one on her back, and one on her thigh. She likes to run into stuff all the time. Usually I don't even know what she nicked herself on.

 

My retired racer came to me with basically zero scars. He now has a couple from when a friend's dog attacked him. He only had 2 tiny punctures but they left little scars.

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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Guest KennelMom

As previously mentioned, puppies play rough and a lot of scars come from their carefree days as pups on the farm. Injuries that come from racing days are purely accidental and unintentional in virtually all cases, I assure you. I've had some greyhounds that just look at something sharp and they get a cut/scar. Some are just more prone to it than others.

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While mistreatment is possible (since people have the ability to be horrible), it is highly unlikely. Most people in the racing industry really care about the dogs. Greyhounds scar very easily. I'm at Dewey and poor Sailor has a new scar in the middle of his back to show off.

 

As for being skittish, its often genetic. Or it could just be that she lived a very different life so the things she's being introduced to are new and scary.

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Guest Waterdog66

I have Zero experience to go on with where she came from in her former life and so have nothing to base an opinion on.

 

BUT: The advice I was given was that she was a working dog and not a pet. She will show some wear from her former life and that just means that she did her job and did it well.

 

I do have experience with other breeds of working dogs and they too definitely show some wear over time. It is part of the their experience.

 

In the end; my commitment to Audrey is endeavor to make retirement the most satisfactory part of her full life :D

Edited by Waterdog66
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Greyhounds scar VERY easily, in fact I bet almost everyone's retired racer has come with at least one scar (and will get more post-adoption!).

 

Here is an article explaining greyhound personalities in the kennel pack, and how this can translate to your adopted hound. :)

 

Idiopathic Fear and Withdrawal in Greyhounds

By: Dennis Mckeon

http://www.greyhoundinfo.org/?page_id=930

Sometimes, adoptive owners of omega and other lower ranking pack members, mistake their dog’s pack-ordained personalities as being the result of inattention, or even rough or inappropriate handling. And this could be the case in some instances. More likely, their natural nervous energies and absence of self assurance is amplified by the extremely challenging life adjustment from the racing kennel to the family domicile—where all sorts of new and intimidating objects and arrangements confront them.

 

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I personally believe skittish dogs are born that way. Sometimes an entire litter is skittish. Those dogs rarely do well at the track.

 

Maybe you should do a little more research since your questions, above, are all answered in any book about adopting a retired Greyhound? I know it's a little too late now, but knowledge is always a good thing!


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To answer your question about baldness and nicks/scars, 100% normal and common for greyhounds. Racing is very high-endurance, combined with greyhound's lack of fur and thin skin. So most if not all retired racers bear some indicators of their racing life. But as the others said, you'll find that greyhounds do get small injuries even at home. My retired racer has way more scrapes and scars that were acquired after he'd been home for awhile. I call him my used car! :) My AKC puppy who came home at 15-weeks-old and started off in "perfect" AKC show quality. Now he has a ton of little marks now too. Little injuries are more obvious on a dog that isn't particular furry. I wouldn't jump to any conclusions based on that.

 

Regarding shyness and skittishness, it's is very, very unlikely that your dog was abused. I think our society is quick to jump on the "abused dog" bandwagon everytime a dog is hand-shy or shows signs of space aggression. I never assume abuse until someone proves otherwise. As George mentioned, some dogs (and even entire litters) are just genetically "spooky." The main reason your dog may seem a little skittish now is because she's adjusting to home life. It's such a HUGE, monumental change. Most greys come home with their defenses up until they feel comfortable and safe (also 100% normal). Greys also are more subtle with their affection and need for human contact. So if you've previously owned any other breed, a greyhound will almost certainly come off as more aloof and shy. They're also quick to tell you when they're uncomfortable or don't like something. That's more of a breed trait than anything else.

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Guest chickenpotpie

As for the scars, not to worry, Lucky gets them all the time and I never know from where. They do indeedy have very thin skin. I'm lucky to have never dealt with sleep aggression or any other type of aggression, so I can only say please be sure that you use like a balled up sock or something to be sure she's awake before approaching if you've noticed sleep aggression. As for the skittishness....I think it sometimes depends on how long you've had them. Lucky was a bit skittish the first week we had her, but after that? nah. It can take a dog some time to settle down and come into their own. We adopted in April and I'm still seeing facets of her personality come out. I think patience is key.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Our first dog--or at least the first dog I was alive for-- (a lab/gh mix) was probably abused. She'd been abandoned in the snow, in winter, in MN. All dad had to do was gesture while talking, not even making a move towards her, and she'd be belly to the ground, cowering. She also was wary of newspapers. She also hated thunder and loud noises. We figure she was probably meant to be a hunting dog, but didn't take, due to the fear of loud noises. I don't think she had any scars though, that I can recall. Although she did get hit by a car once. Anyway, supplication/appeasement behavior, I think, often goes hand in hand with true abuse. Although our next dog was also extremely servile, but she'd been waiting for a family for two years before she found us. But again, she wasn't doing appeasement behaviors, she was just extremely submissive.

 

Anyway fast forward to Dane. Dane is fawn/red, so his scars are really prominent, unlike our two ladies before who were black all over with white bellies. He even has a scar that looks kinda like a butterfly on one side! Scars don't show up as much on brindles or black dogs, so some of it is a visual thing too. They all look fairly old, though, although he has a couple on his hind haunches that look pretty nasty and are quite thick, so those must have been a bit more serious. (I know, for instance, that he fell at the first turn on one of his races, so maybe he hurt himself then...) Apart from those crescents and the butterfly, most of his scars consist of little dots all over his skin. No doubt teeth marks and such from puppy-hood.

 

Also I don't think I've ever seen a dog of any breed without worn elbows--who wasn't a puppy anyway :lol

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My Diana has no hair/healed round scars on all the toe knuckles on one foot, her "wrist" and "ankle" on the same leg. Cause - running to the house full-tilt and skidding badly to a stop on our concrete patio. She was 7 at the time. She has a couple scars on her side that are nickel-sized and never grow hair - she got those when she was 6 - playing with a foster (not bad enough to stitch, but they look like black crescent moons. She has a chunk that looks like somebody clipped a triangle out of one ear - that was from taking on a fence while throwing a stuffy around - age 5. I could go on. My dog probably looks abused - but she came to my house unmarked at age 2. Lots of greys have puppy-scars - lots also have life scars. I imagine most dogs have scars - you just see them better on greys.

 

She was also completely hairless on the belly for several years - now that's mostly grown in - no idea why.

 

We have no idea of your dog's history - but skittishness and scars really don't mean anything.

 

ETA: I don't think it was a bad question to ask. You obviously weren't trying to stir up trouble. It's really good to ask questions! When we have issues - we look for causes.

Edited by sobesmom
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