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Open Doors?


Guest laurennf
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Guest laurennf

My boyfriend and I are debating getting a greyhound and have been doing research on them for a while now. What really concerns us are some of the horror stories about them getting out and running away. I wanted to know how likely they are to just bolt out an open door and run away? We do not plan on leaving doors open, but are concerened if families or friends come to visit and the door is open- will they push their way out? Any experiences you could share would be great!

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With a greyhound, YOU are responsible for the doors. No one else. Until you are ready or willing to take that type of control, a greyhound or other sight hound may not be right for your household. Not trying to discourage you, but every hound is different, and no one here can tell you that they won't go out an open door.

 

Often, they are excited to meet whomever is coming in the door, and may want to try and go with someone when they leave. Even after 5 years, there are many times where we throw a leash on Rocket if the door is going to be opened. Honestly, I don't think he would run off even if he got out, but we have lots of things outside that are triggers for a sight hound like bunnies running, birds, etc. Any of those can cause him to give chase and take off running if the conditions are right.

 

It's not something to be afraid of, but you must be hyper aware of doors, windows, gates, garage doors etc at all time with a sight hound. You can't just yell to someone "watch the dog" when they open a door. You have to be in control of the hound and the door. Doing so is the only way to eliminate those types of incidents, and even then there are times that accidents happen. Every owner here has had that one close call. If they haven't, then they just haven't had it happen yet.

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Camp Broodie. The current home of Mark Kay Mark Jack and LaVida I've Got Life.  Always missing my boy Rocket Hi Noon Rocket,  Allie  Phoenix Dynamite, Kate Miss Kate, Starz Under Da Starz, Petunia MW Neptunia and Diva Astar Dashindiva 

 

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Guest Jesse12789

i just adopted my first greyhound and yes i have to be pretty diligent with the doors. first few days i had to actually stick my arm into the door and grab his collar before opening the door completely. he is getting better at just standing there and not pushing to try and greet me when the door is opening. if your nt ready to make sure the doors are shut i wouldnt adopt a greyhound but hey its really not that hard to just be aware when someone is at your door and being aware where your hound is. just be extra cautious if theres kids coming in and out and explain to them the door has to be shut each and every tume they go in and out. and i would just double check there actually following that. but you will be in so much love with your grey that will not be a hard task to follow through on its miniscule amount of work compared to the love and affection your new grey gives you. its totally worth it.

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Guest june

The big difference with a grey is they are "sight" hounds. They see everything! And if it moves they want to chase it. If they get out all they will see is the bunny,squirrel or cat across the road and they will NOT see the truck or car that is about to hit them. They will NOT hear you call them. For hundreds of years they have been breed to CHASE and that is what they do. And if you happen to have a hound that gets frightened easily it can be VERY difficult to catch them. Even calm hounds can become frighted or excited and become difficult to catch.

 

On the other hand they are loving, wonderful pets well worth the extra effort involved. So if you are willing to be vigilant with doors and gates they could be the right dog for you.

Good luck.

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Anything can happen to any dog (becoming lost, becoming ill) and if you think about that, you'd never adopt any animal.

 

My girl doesn't rush the door. I have a 3-level split with the entry four steps below the living room. When I come home, she's standing in the living room, at the top of the stairs, waiting for me to greet her. When the doorbell rings, she usually walks into the living room to see who's at the door. She's a very calm, laid back, can't-be-bothered Greyhound. She can't even be bothered to go after bunnies and squirrels in the yard. She ignores them (makes me wonder how much she enjoyed the 88 races she was in LOL).

 

Nevertheless, friends and family know we open the door and walk in. We don't stand there talking with the screen door open even an inch...just in case. This is a long-standing habit because I also have a cat that is strictly indoors and she would rush the door to get outside.

 

If you really love Greyhounds and know in your heart it's the dog you must have, then you will find a way to work with doors.

Edited by Feisty49
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I do home visits and find the fenced yards a big issue. Locking gates is very important,especially

if they are not used daily. Meter readers, lawn service and others enter yards ,take equipment out and leave the gates swinging in the wind. If I have people over for dinner parties or holidays, I lock doors and put a large sign on the inside and outside that owner must be present if door opens. ( I have the key!) I have failed myself by leaving the gate loose when taking a ladder to the front yard. I looked across the street and saw my foster sitting on their porch licking their Jack O Lantern. Also loading/unloading in vehicles is a top priority . Side door is better to control access to the collar. Open a tailgate and of course it's off to the races.

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Guest Dancer

I think this is a good question and one of many that new owners will need to gather information on and potentially change things around their home to adjust to having a new hound.

 

I agree with the other comments - it is a two part thing. First they are sight hounds and can't be fully trusted and second you can influence the situation with training and using caution when opening doors. My boys love when someone comes to the door and get quite excited...I doubt they would run off, but you never know. To help make the arrival of guests less 'exciting'...I've trained my boys to "back"...which really means they must be behind a certain line in the floor and wait until I say okay. They are pretty good at this (even when the pizza delivery guy arrives ;) ). Even though they are relatively stable with their training...I don't open the door wide, don't give them a clear view of the street and stand directly between them and the open door.

 

Best wishes on your new hound...it is wonderful sharing a home with a greyhound or two...

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Guest laurennf

Has anyone tried using a babygate? our door opens into a pretty narrow hallway before it opens into the living area and the rest of the house, and would be perfect for babygating so that at least initially we could come in and out more easily without being worried. would this be a good option to consider?

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We do not open the front door- we just don't. If someone is there we will go out the side door (in the fenced in yard) and to the gate to see who is there.

 

IMO a determined hound can jump a baby gate.

Tin and Michael and Lucas, Picasso, Hero, Oasis, Galina, Neizan, Enzo, Salvo and Noor the Galgos.
Remembering Bridge Angel Greyhounds: Tosca, Jamey, Master, Diego, and Ambi; plus Angel Galgos Jules, Marco and Baltasar.

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Guest CleverJason

My grey might be the exception to the rule. He doesn't want to go out open doors. He likes to stay inside his safe little house unless I've got a leash on him. But having said that, I don't take chances. I keep a baby gate by the door so I can block him off when I need to leave the door open.

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I think maybe if you understand a bit of why this is a problem you might be more creative in arranging solutions.

 

At the racetrack, Greyhounds are put into boxes and when the door flies open, they are expected to run hard and fast. They need to get out of the box quickly. A few yards out of the box, they will meet up with the other hounds so they have to learn to get around them and go even faster so they don't get into a tangle. If your house door opens, the greyhound may bolt and maneuver around people so they can run as they were trained to do.

 

Once they are running, they need to be able to ignore people yelling -- like the people that are calling their names because they bet on them at the racetrack. If your dog gets out, he/she may not listen to you calling them because they have been trained to ignore distractions. This is one reason why it is best practice to always have them on a leash unless they are in an enclosed yard.

 

Previous posts gave some great suggestions. The one about not standing at the door and talking is a great one - either go in or out but, don't stand at an open door. Fence gates are also an issue, always check that they are closed and LATCHED especially after maintenance calls or bad weather.

Edited by MaryJane
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Has anyone tried using a babygate? our door opens into a pretty narrow hallway before it opens into the living area and the rest of the house, and would be perfect for babygating so that at least initially we could come in and out more easily without being worried. would this be a good option to consider?

Most greys, especially top loaded females, can clear a baby gate with ease if they have the desire to do so.(And if you put it up too high, they can wiggle under) Sammi normally doesn't clear a baby gate, because she has learned that it means "stop", I think she humors me by staying behind it. Heck, Last Thanksgiving I was doing a lot of cooking in the kitchen along with DH & DIL. Sammi was underfoot, even on her dogbed, so I had to bar her from the kitchen. It's a very wide archway, so all that I had that was long enough was a 12" x 12" x 6foot box to lay across the archway. She first stood forlornly on the other side of it. Then she laid down next to it and rested her head on it.

 

This is the same dog that I have witnessed:

~Jumping into the back of a Blazer

~Jumping up into the backseat of the cab of a 4x4 F150

~Jumping over me to get on my bed and her feet didn't touch me or the bed

~Jumping 5 feet off of the ground to get up into a loft bed (Happened ONCE. her getting down scared me so bad I wouldn't allow her to pull that one again)

 

Like I said, she knows what a barricade is for and either respects it, or humors me by staying behind it. But I wouldn't trust her to not go over it if she wanted to.

 

Now, there ARE taller "gates" that are more permanent that you can actually have a secondary part that you unlatch and push open like a door. Those might work better than the baby gates you see at Kmart, Walmart, Target, etc...

 

 

 

The house we're in now, I love the set up. All 3 ways into the house require 2 doors to go through: Front room (enclosed porch/summer room) + living room, Side enclosed porch + kitchen, or back door + utility room door. Eventually when we redo the summer room & porch to make them more usable, I will be adding storm/screen doors to their outer doors.

 

 

 

 

With a greyhound, YOU are responsible for the doors. No one else. Until you are ready or willing to take that type of control, a greyhound or other sight hound may not be right for your household.

Watch out for Huskies as well. The ones that I have known in my life were far worse than the greys I have known about doors & bolting/running.

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Guest CleverJason

Has anyone tried using a babygate? our door opens into a pretty narrow hallway before it opens into the living area and the rest of the house, and would be perfect for babygating so that at least initially we could come in and out more easily without being worried. would this be a good option to consider?

I have a metal baby gate. One day I just had it leaning against the doorway while I was in the other room, and my grey tries to make a jailbreak by jumping at it. The baby gate falls over with a loud clash and scares my dog half to death. Now, wherever the baby gate is, he stays at least a foot or two away from it. I'm not advocating training your dog to fear the baby gate, but if it happens accidentally...it sure works.

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With training it shouldn't be a huge issue, although you should always be careful. My dogs won't even go down my front steps in front of me on leash. When delivery people come, they'll put their front feet on the stoop to sniff the person, then follow the food inside. I did lots of training though.

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I have a metal baby gate. One day I just had it leaning against the doorway while I was in the other room, and my grey tries to make a jailbreak by jumping at it. The baby gate falls over with a loud clash and scares my dog half to death. Now, wherever the baby gate is, he stays at least a foot or two away from it. I'm not advocating training your dog to fear the baby gate, but if it happens accidentally...it sure works.

:lol Sammi is sort of "egg trained". If there is an egg sitting in view on the counter, she will NOT put her head/nose near the counter. The reason being, years ago when my mom was visiting me, I was making something -cookies for my son, i think... something that involved eggs- and I was chatting with her while baking. Well, I was turned towards my mom while cracking eggs on the edge of the counter. The last egg, I went to thwapp it off of the edge of the counter and it made a really bad sound and instantly shattered in my hand. My mom immediately starts laughing herself silly. I look down, and there is Sammi with raw egg dripping across her needle nose. Apparently she had put her nose up there to see what I was doing and I cracked the egg on her head.

 

Also have a friend that had a 2x4 trained great dane. It fell on his feet as a puppy, scaring the daylights out of him. Ever since then, if there is a 2x4 across a doorway or in his way, he will not step near it, he'd rather sphinx behind it and whine because of the evil 2x4 :blink:

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Guest Houston1219

Have you ever been to a butterfly house? You walk in one door, it closes, and only then does the second door open to go in or out. That's the approach we take. We have metal baby gates that are bolted to the door frames. For us they work just fine, Houston is a pretty lousy jumper. the front door does not open until this gate is closed. I hear that females tend to be the better jumpers because they are kept in the upper kennels? I have never had a female, but I have heard this.

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Has anyone tried using a babygate? our door opens into a pretty narrow hallway before it opens into the living area and the rest of the house, and would be perfect for babygating so that at least initially we could come in and out more easily without being worried. would this be a good option to consider?

This is what I was going to suggest. A well exercised and well trained dog shouldn't dart out of the door, with the caveat that how much training is required will vary greatly depending on many factors and thus whether you are skilled/dedicated enough to do the training is also a factor, but it doesn't hurt to have a safety in place, especially with guests who may not be as careful. It's certainly a good idea early on until you know the dog better or a good option if you just don't trust yourself or your dog.

 

There are always other options too. Crating when you have guests, tethering him to you or something else with a leash, using a gate or x-pen to keep him in another room, etc. It's certainly not a reason to avoid adopting imo.

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Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

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Guest roweboy

I'm new to greyhounds but previously had a Basenji mix (another sight hound) who would bolt through any door and could not be contained. She even learned how to open a heavy patio slider. Having friends or work people over was a nightmare.

 

That said, we were very used to closing doors carefully, setting our storm door springs to a quick close, and always checking before opening a door. So far we've never had our grey rush a door or go crazy to escape. I always have a hand on his collar when I open a door and he never tries to bolt. He is learning never to get to a door before I do, and the word "wait" is reinforced with a nudge of my knee to his chest if he tries. I do this with going through a door too: people first, then the dog.

 

I know people on here who have dogs that bolt when the car tailgate is opened opened and ours did, too. I taught our guy the "wait" command whenever I open it, and he does. He's very big and there could be plenty of force if he just pushed through, but I make him wait and he's gotten very good at it. My husband was impressed that he actually does wait even when he's super excited to get out. It's funny because when he gets in I tell him, "Watch your head" as I close the tailgate and he ducks a little :)

 

I would say you should definitely get a gh if you're prepared to be diligent about his/her safety. Trust me, once you have one of these dogs, it's easy to love the so much you'd be horrified if anything bad happened to them.

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Has anyone tried using a babygate? our door opens into a pretty narrow hallway before it opens into the living area and the rest of the house, and would be perfect for babygating so that at least initially we could come in and out more easily without being worried. would this be a good option to consider?

 

This is exactly what we have. We call it the "airlock" because the babygate is closed when the door is opened unless the dogs are on leashes. And our back door has a porch, and the dogs are in the house with that door closed when the porch door is open, again unless they are on leashes. It is a wonderful thing when we come back from shopping and have our hands full. We aren't as adamant about it now as we were when we first got our dogs, but for the first 6 months it was essential. And really easy to do if you "hang" your babygates in such a way that they automatically swing closed!

 

It shouldn't be a sole reason not to get a dog, but you do need to be aware of the doorways at all times.

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With training it shouldn't be a huge issue, although you should always be careful. My dogs won't even go down my front steps in front of me on leash. When delivery people come, they'll put their front feet on the stoop to sniff the person, then follow the food inside. I did lots of training though.

 

That has been our experience too, and ours are the same with not rushing out when leashed up, but waiting for us to step out first. I've taught them the 'Wait!' command and they know 'Uh-uh!' which means 'stop what you're doing immediately'.

 

We have had one or two who wanted to bolt out of the door when we first took them on, but with training they stopped doing it. Now, though they can be a pain wanting to greet visitors before they're actually inside, they don't run out. On the rare occasions when they did get over-enthusiastic and get out to greet someone, a word has called them back in with no problem. They don't take off running. I'd say my two are not much different to any other breed with regard to open doors. We don't take stupid risks, and tradesmen are always told that if they let my dogs out they might find themselves going home missing bits of themselves (JK), but really and truly it's not something we need to be paranoid about day to day.

 

Of course, our door doesn't face anything interesting. It may be a different matter if you have a door which opens to a vista of woods and deer, rabbits, etc. If ours poke their noses out they can see cars passing, maybe people walking, the occasional dog, but nothing they might want to chase.

 

It makes sense to be overcautious at first, till you see what you're dealing with and how trainable/settled/calm your particular dog is - at first it's probably worth assuming they WILL run out. Then assess your own situation carefully and go from there. I have to say that there are many other breeds which are more easily trained to keep themselves safe than sighthounds are, but sighthounds are incredibly rewarding, and also very peaceful and calming dogs to have around. You don't find many who get under your feet all the time or who are constantly on the move, as (for instance) terriers are, or who need your attention all day. OK, at first you may well find you have a velcro dog who follows you everywhere (including the toilet) but as they settle they generally stop doing that quite quickly! :P

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest Lillypad

Welcome to Greytalk, So happy you are considering a greyhound and very happy to see you are doing your research.

 

I may get myself in trouble here, but I hate to see you avoid owning a greyhound based on this "what if" scenario. Unless, I don't fully understand the amount of traffic coming and going in your household, this is a very managable situation,

 

First let me say, open doors are a potential danger for all dogs. Greyhounds like all dogs need training,

 

While training will not guarantee that you dog won't go out an open door, it sure can help to manage your dog. One of the very first things I taught my dog was to wait for a release command before going in or out the house door, garage door or car door. I would never let my guard down, but I now feel my dog has a little self control.

 

Basic obedience training does many wonderful things, it teaches manners and it teaches the dog self-control. A dog with basic obedience will most likely not rush the door if you put the rules in place. Also as your bond with your greyhound builds and he realizes this "place" is his home, It is quite possilbe he will have no interest in "bolting" out the door. It is not unheard of, a greyhound not even bothering to get up off their cozy bed when someone comes to the door, There are times my girl couldn't care less, who was at the door.

 

You could install a special hinge at the top of your door that forces the door to close behind you. We have one of these on the door leading to the garage. Do you have a garage entrance to your home. If so get in the habit of using it. We rarely use the front door. Using the garage gives you a little buffer between the house entrance and the big outdoors.

 

If you consider taking some obedience classes and are diligent in schooling both yourself and your dog, then I very much hope you will get a greyhound. It is true greyhounds have certain idiosyncrasies, but really no more than most breeds. Dog ownership is a serious and long term commitment,. When people ask me about that commintment, I say it is like perpetually caring after a 3 or 4 year old child. You have to make their safety a priority at all times, but the good news it is a joyful task and one easily managed.

 

You will learn a great deal here at Greytalk, I know I have, but remember the big picture and try not to get anxious over the small things. Remember there are 1000s of members and most likely you will never experience some of the scenarios talked about, Now having said that, of course knowledge is power; and Greytalk is a great place to get that knowledge. Best Regards

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Payton will try any time a door is open to get out and he has succeeded three times. We generally put him in his crate when someone comes to the door. We also put a fence between our garage and back patio so that he can’t run out of the garage from the patio. Also, he has learned that the back gate opens so he every single time he goes in the backyard, the first thing he does is push on the gate to see if it will open. I make sure to keep the lock on it.

 

Every dog we have ever had has great recall (we spend a lot of time training it) but not Payton. He is our first greyhound – maybe that has something to do with it - I can’t ever see him having a strong enough recall to ever trust him not to take off.

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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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Guest Jesse12789

well today i had a huge scare and a very long talk with my 8 Y/O brother..... today he left the sliding glass door wide open. now this door is not to the backyard it is to the driveway into the open world. im just letting you know not all greyhounds want to just barge through any open door and run away i dont know how long the door was open maybe 5 minutes but my grey was in the kitchen and just trotting around he defintly saw the door was open but absolutely had no desire to go out. now im not saying hes safe from running out i still am very strict on all doors need to be shut and everything but if it gives you any confidence not all greys are gonna look for any oppertunity to escape. hes really good at not coming to the door when someone going as well. he stay about 5 to 8 feet back from the door whenever i leave for work . when i come home on the other hand he is by the door but way to focused on greeting me then wanting to go out...so like i said i still never keep a door or fence open for fear of him wandering out but maybe this will give you a little more confidence in thinking all greyhounds want to barge out an open door.

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