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Guest joescho

Some Questions Before I Take The Plunge

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Guest joescho

Hello All:

I'm thinking of getting a dog (would be my first dog), and it would seem that a Greyhound would be a good choice for me. They don't seem to require acres of land to run, they are relatively a calm dog and seem to be very sweet.

 

I have a wood fence that's quite old, and its missing fence in 2 spots. My plan is to fix the fence where its shot, and replace the two missing pieces. Also need to close up the backyard on the sides of the house maybe with a chain link 4 foot. Once that's done, I would have a yard to allow the dog to run around without a leash so I can play ball with him and let him be a dog.

 

Anyway, I also have some questions with the initial week or two. Is it best to buy him a crate and put the crate in the kitchen for him to sleep, or put the crate in my bedroom and allow him to sleep in the crate in my bedroom, or put the crate in the kitchen and a fluffy pad in my room for him to sleep?

 

I'm also concerned with leaving him alone. I would ideally like to get him when I have a week off so I can spend the week with him and figure out how he will be. Do I gradually leave him alone more and more? I was thinking initially to get a baby gate and keep him in the kitchen but open the door to the basment to allow him access to the kitchen and the basement while I'm out. The basement is partially finished with a wood stove insert, carpeting, a fluffy couch, and a TV I could leave on.

 

I could also put the crate in the basement for him, but thatg would mean that he probably be sleeping in the basement every night which probably not be good for him - not sure.

 

Anyway, I have a few more questions but I don't want to pile them on all at once.

 

Thanks,

Joe

 

 

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Guest Doggone

Joe,

Since you're new to greyhounds, I'd suggest you first read Greyhounds for Dummies. It's a wonderful primer for someone who's thinking of getting a greyhound. They're unique dogs, a bit unlike other breeds or mixes, and this book should answer many of your questions, plus give you a fairly good sense of what you can look forward to.

I've had other types of dogs, but Autumn, my first greyhound, is unlike anything I knew (in a good way :)). I can't imagine having any other kind now.

Good luck. If you still have questions after reading the book, I'm sure you'll be able to get the answers here.

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Welcome! I've had my greyhound almost two years now, so am by no means an expert, but here are a few things I've learned here and through our experience:

 

-- Fencing: While many adoption groups don't require a fenced yard, you'd definitely want to make the repairs you mentioned asap if you plan to hang out there with the dog off-leash. A lot of them have no interest in playing ball, though (just to warn you: they're incredibly lazy), but having space for the dog to run around in for a few minutes is definitely a bonus. Some hounds can jump a four-foot fence, so I'd check with the adoption group on that. From what I understand, females are more likely to be jumpers because their crates are on top at the kennel. (Ideally you'll be getting a dog that's been fostered in a home for a while, so you will have an idea of their personality and possible behavioral quirks beforehand.)

-- Crates: If you can borrow a crate from your adoption group, try that before purchasing one. Some greyhounds hate their crates and will whine or even injure themselves trying to get out, so don't spend the money right away until you know how the hound reacts. Mine loves hers and still goes in there on her own two years after she got here, so it really depends on the individual dog. Baby gates can work well for hounds that don't crate.

-- Sleeping: Keep in mind that racing greys have never been alone, and everything in your home is totally new, so s/he should sleep in the bedroom with you. If s/he likes the crate, keep it in there; otherwise, a big comfy dog bed or pile of blankets will do just fine.

-- Separation anxiety: It's a great idea to have at least a week off when you first get the dog. Look up "alone training" and "separation anxiety" on this forum and you'll find lots of excellent tips. Essentially, you want to start very slowly by leaving the dog alone for a minute, then gradually work your way up to 5 minutes, 10 minutes, half an hour, an hour, etc. Some hounds do fine right away; some take a while to adjust. Leaving them a frozen Kong stuffed with kibble and some peanut butter will keep them occupied, and leaving a radio or TV on low can help as well.

-- The basement: Your hound may not know how to do stairs. Check with your adoption group about this before leaving the door open to the basement. If the stairs are hardwood or another slippery surface, you'll need to get some stair treads. There are tips on this forum on stair training as well.

 

Helpful resources are Cynthia Branigan's "Adopting the Racing Greyhound" and the aforementioned "Retired Racing Greyhounds for Dummies" by Lee Livingood. This article from Kathleen Gilley offers some great insight into what your retired racer experiences when adopted into a home for the first time. Be honest and detailed with the adoption group about what you have in mind and they can find a hound that matches your lifestyle.

 

Cautions aside, I have had the best experience imaginable with my girl. She adapted easily and quickly, as many of them do, but it's good to be aware what the adjustment period might entail. Also be prepared for a lot of attention when you take the dog anywhere with you! Our usual 30-minute lunchtime walk today lasted an hour because we stopped to chat with some gentlemen who wanted to know all about her. :)

Edited by ramonaghan

17369590311_3d5eeef92f.jpg

Rachel with Sweep and kitties Olive and Momo.
Always missing my boys Mud and
Henry

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Hello All:

I'm thinking of getting a dog (would be my first dog), and it would seem that a Greyhound would be a good choice for me. They don't seem to require acres of land to run, they are relatively a calm dog and seem to be very sweet.

 

I have a wood fence that's quite old, and its missing fence in 2 spots. My plan is to fix the fence where its shot, and replace the two missing pieces. Also need to close up the backyard on the sides of the house maybe with a chain link 4 foot. Once that's done, I would have a yard to allow the dog to run around without a leash so I can play ball with him and let him be a dog.

 

 

 

 

Welcome. Do read as much as you can about Greyhounds. I just want to mention that most Greyhounds -- I'm not saying all so don't anybody jump on me -- don't play ball. They're not a toss and fetch-type canine. They're a maybe-I'll-play-with-this-stuffie dog and then sleep for 4 hours. Most like to run in a backyard and/or do zoomies, but not all. My girl is 7 years old. She has a large, totally fenced yard. She hasn't run in it for over a year, even with other Greyhounds over to play with. However, if you become a Greyhound lover, you'll discover that no matter the personality, you will love your hound more than you can imagine. Good luck.

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If you want a dog to play with, to go for off leash walks with, to get rough and tumble with--get a Labrador or a Golden.

 

If you want a dog who will quietly sleep up to 20 hours a day and provide you with extremely quite companionship, a Greyhound might be right for you.

 

As everyone else has recommended, do some reading, and continue asking questions, before you "take the plunge."

 

I can't imagine a Greyhound as a first dog. They can be pretty quirky. But many disagree with me--that's just my opinion!



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

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Guest fenix916

Reading a book is definitely worth it.

 

I agree, if you can borrow a crate it might be the way to go. Our boy loves to go in his crate as long as we don't lock it. Lock it and he panics.

 

We read in one greyhound book that 4" green vinyl wire fencing can work to keep a hound in, and it works great for us to fill a couple gaps in our fencing.

 

Try multiple adoption groups and be honest about your experience. They may have an "easy" dog for you.

 

We're on our first greyhound. He's got some anxiety issues, even when compared to other dogs, but we love him. He loves us. It's worth it. He does mostly just sleep all day, but he's so happy on his daily walks and it's so gratifying to see him grow and be able to accept love.

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Maybe you can get a dog that has been in a foster home as an only dog. Have fun reading. Spend time with some greyhounds. My five all like to play with balls, and two will even bring them back. Many don't do balls! Good luck. Have fun!

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Guest Melissa516

Looks like you've got some good advice already.

 

I'll just add that a 4 foot fence would make me really nervous, especially one that they can see through. They can see incredibly far away, and most can't resist a squirrel, rabbit, bird, etc. Some also get spooked by loud noises (thunder, fireworks, etc.) and may try to bolt.

 

As for balls, most greyhounds don't play fetch. If they do play with balls, it's going to be more of a keep away kind of game. And, good luck catching them...

 

We started with crates but no longer use them. Your greyhound may find the crate to be familiar and comforting, since they are used to living in them. But, some hate them. Greyhounds aren't used to living alone, so I'd keep the crate in your bedroom if you're going to use one. I would not crate him all alone in the basement.

 

There are many posts on alone training with a lot of good advice. Also, you could invest in a Dropcam if you'd like to keep an eye on what's going on when you're away.

 

Our greyhounds were our first dogs, so I know it can be done. It just took a lot of patience, adjusting and trial and error (both ours and they dog's). Make sure that you choose an adoption group that offers a good support system post-adoption, so that you have someone to go to with questions.

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Guest amethyst

My grey is a football player. She has a Hartz football that is soft and squeekie and and she has evolved into a great retriever. It took about 2 years for her to learn the game and watching another dog play fetch was really helpful.

 

You have to let them learn at their own pace, which may be slow. Please, be patient; they have to learn how to be a pet. They probably never had a toy in their life or a soft bed or anyone who cared enough to rub their ears and love on them. You'll be rewarded (eventually) when they transform into a loving wonderful companion.

 

When you choose your dog, watch him/her carefully. You want to make sure they're comfortable with people. Touch each of their feet, Does he/she object, nip , move away? Is she interested in you or just the other dogs? Don't go in with a preconceived idea of the dog color or sex. Choose carefully and thoughtfully.

 

Thankfully, when I went in to choose my dog, I took my boyfriend along and he helped me choose the absolute best dog there. I was looking at the white and fawn colored dogs strictly because they were beautiful. He said watch how the brindle wants to be with us. Touch her all over, does she object? Does she avoid you, move away? These are important things to pay attention to.

 

I'd recommend walking your dog daily and, if possible, keep him/her on the same schedule as they were on at the track/adoption kennel. I've had no mistakes/issues (0/none) with housetraining my female following the original 4 times a day turn out schedule. My yard is not fenced so, I walk her 4 times a day.

 

Good Luck with your new best friend.

 

 

 

 

 

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Welcome! This a great board for all things sighthound!!

You will get "greyt" advice from people more experienced than I. I read Greyhounds for Dummies and still refer to it now and then. It's a good investment.

My $.02...

Ask for a bounce or one who's been fostered! A bounce is a dog who might have done fine in a home, and learned house manners, but maybe the

family had to move, or divorced, someone lost a job or fell ill, or an elderly owner couldn't care for the dog. They are rewarding to give a home to and they know what a home is--they will just need to learn YOUR house rules (couch or no couch? what time is potty time? Greys like their schedule to be somewhat consistent)

 

Fostered dogs should have been introduced to glass doors, stairs, and shiny floors, all of which can be new to a dog off the track. Fostered homes tend to be people

who are seasoned grey owners with hounds in the house who can act as role models for a dog off the track. Learning from other dogs can be great for a new dog, and

make life a little easier for a new dog owner. A foster owner should also have an idea what the dog's personality is like, and can recommend one that is a good fit for your lifestyle.

 

Keep in mind that a dog will often "lay low" and slowly his or her personality will unfold as they relax and adjust.

 

I was warned early on, never put a dog in a room that he or she isn't used to when you go out.

 

I wouldn't put him or her in the basement unless it's a place the family regularly hangs out when they are home.

 

Many rescues will loan or rent a crate to start. Some greys crate so well, they go in there for a nap or "special alone time", some can't stand it. Some greys will respect a baby gate to stay in one room, some will jump, knock over or destroy baby gates. They will tell you a dog has to sleep in your bedroom. Our dog does OK in the hall outside our bedroom on 2 twin duvets folded in quarters, with the door open (so he can see and hear us). He has full run of the house, but initially, we baby gated him into the upstairs at night.

 

Definitely try to adopt the dog when you have time to be there ego supervise and get him settled and gradually get him used to the idea that you'll leave but you always come back and better yet--you leaving =treat time! Raw hides, "greenies", and kongs with peanut butter or other durable rubber puzzle toys stuffed with kibble or cheerios (where dog has to knock it about to get eh food to fall out) are awesome. Reserve things things that he only gets after a potty break and when you go bye bye make the dog eventually be like, "jeez, lady just leave so I can get my TREATS!"

 

That said, every dog is different, be prepared to adapt and adjust as much as the dog does--come back here for advice!

Good luck!

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My perfect girl Grace was my first dog. And what a gem she was. I had the greyhounds for dummies book and read it before bringing her home. I went to the adoption kennel and picked this three year old brindle girl who had never been in a car, never mind a home. I put her in the back seat of my Toyota Corolla and drove her in stop and go traffic to my busy downtown apartment. I had two ways to get her into my studio....1. stairs or 2. shiny floors to an elevator. She did the stairs like a champ the very first time and neither of us ever looked back.

 

I'm telling you this because there *is* such a thing as an easy grey right off the track. She fetched, hiked with me, went to dog parks, lived in houses, apartments, townhomes and condos with me (I move a lot) and was really just the perfect companion. I trusted my gut and picked the dog who picked me. That's why it worked. I didn't get sucked into age or color or even a name. I actually disliked the name Grace and had planned to change in but she was *such* a Grace. :beatheart

 

As far as your fencing, you'll want to fix all of the holes and put up fencing where you have gaps, but the height should be just fine for a greyhound. Fenway won't go over 18" garden fencing. Both my greyhounds have lived in houses with see-through 3.5 foot fencing and neither ever though to jump it. The jumpers are the exceptions, not the rule in greyhounds. At least in my experience. They've also done just fine at my parents house with 3 foot fencing, and that was after watching the neighbors dogs jump back and forth over the fence from yard to yard.

 

All the best of luck in picking our your new best buddy, faithful companion and loyal friend. The love of a greyhound really is the best thing around.


Introducing Tessie, PK's Cat Island 12/9/13
Jackson the Airedale 12/12/05
Forever missing Grace 2/18/03 - 1/19/13 (RT's Grace, 18156/23B) and Fenway 10/10/06 - 9/25/16 (not registered)

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It's great you're asking all these good questions.

 

In training a dog to be alone, I try to start off on something like the permanent schedule. I work out of the house for 8+ hrs. I don't want a new dog, especially one that will be on its own, to get used to me being at home a lot during the workday week. So I try for a long weekend with alone training.

 

Just because most greyhounds aren't into chasing balls doesn't mean you can't have fun playing in the yard. They've been bred selectively for thousands of years to be independent hunters. They're interested in things that look like fleeing prey. How do you feel about throwing stuffed toys in the yard? :lol All mine have enjoyed that. Or a good session of tug. Most of mine go nuts for a lure pole http://www.garrettzoo.net/lurepole.html Enjoy!


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Ellen, Milo, and Jeter

remembering Eve, Baz, Scout, Romie, and Nutmeg

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I have a fetching, ball-playing greyhound girl. If you want one like that, make sure the group you use knows the kind of dog you're interested in and go from there. I will say that my girl is higher maintenance than my more typical boy. We got her at 2, and she didn't learn to sleep in until she turned 4. Joe came to us understanding Sunday morning is for sleeping!

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My greyhound was my first dog at age 45. I can't imagine why people say they can't imagine a greyhound as a first dog! I was a lifetime cat person and of course I wanted a nice catlike dog. If I had to have a non-greyhound, I'd probably never have had a dog at all.

 

Yes, you should read various books. I personally like Cynthia Branigan's "Adopting the Racing Greyhound" better than "Greyhounds for Dummies," though it isn't quite as detailed and some info is a little dated. But I find it better written and it made me feel more empowered and less overwhelmed with detail. Patricia McConnell's booklet "I'll Be Home Soon: Preventing and Treating Separation Anxiety" is also very useful reading.


With Cocoa (DC Chocolatedrop), missing B for Beth (2006-2015)
And kitties C.J., Klara, Bernadette, John-Boy, & Sinbad

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Guest chickenpotpie

I never had a pet before Lucky, but I also think I hit the Pet Lottery because she's as weird as I am! :hehe Our relationship is not without its bumps though, but what relationship is? Its a learning process and one I'm very happy to have had.

 

Lots of great advice here as far as reading, and I just want to add its important to be honest with the group you work with about what you're really looking for.

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Welcome to GT! Browse all the forums, but please don't get intimidated. If you read the Health and Medical forum please don't think all greys are sick. They're not.

 

One of the biggest general suggestions that I'd give you is that greys are pack animals. They need to be an integral part of your home. Plan on one being very close by all the time. Leaving it outside alone, or crating it in an unused room, or putting it in the basement won't work. They want and need to be around the family. That said ... boundaries are necessary. A crate in your bedroom or the living room is fine. Baby-gating a grey in the kitchen or living room is fine.

 

Alone-training is VERY VERY important for a new grey. Read up on it, and do it. That said, most people work. Our greys are left alone and do just fine.

 

Work with a group that fosters. And TALK to the foster people.

 

Greys are wonderful animals. Just do a bit of research, and don't be afraid to ask questions, and you'll be fine.

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Guest normaandburrell

 

 

If you read the Health and Medical forum please don't think all greys are sick. They're not.

 

All great advice. Do some reading, make the fence repairs, and then talk to your local adoption group. They will help you get a dog that will fit your lifestyle. Many make home visits to see if there are any other issues you need to resolve before bringing home a grey. Good luck!

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My greyhound was my first dog at age 45. I can't imagine why people say they can't imagine a greyhound as a first dog! I was a lifetime cat person and of course I wanted a nice catlike dog. If I had to have a non-greyhound, I'd probably never have had a dog at all.

My first dog was also a greyhound. And I was 44 at the time. Like PrairieProf, I was a lifetime cat person, and greyhounds were perfect for me. Our first one, our girl Rascal, was THE perfect 'first dog'. Just ask queenwinniesmom, who was her foster mom. :) While I was growing up we had a miniature poodle, but since I didn't have responsibility for any of his care, I don't really 'count' that as my first dog. I also agree with PrairieProf that if it hadn't been a greyhound, I wouldn't have a dog at all. In fact, after our fourth greyhound passed, we went for 10 months with no dog--and my husband suggested maybe we should get a non-greyhound. I can't even imagine that. For me, it's a greyhound or nothing. But that's just me. :)


Phoebe (Belle's Sweetpea) adopted 9/2/13.

Jack (BTR Captain Jack) 9/28/05--11/2/12
Always missing Buddy, Ruby, and Rascal.

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I think a greyhound is a great first dog. It wasn't mine, but they are easy compared to other breeds.

 

I think many people have a tendancy to complicate the reality of living with a greyhound. They are dogs. Use your common sense, don't let then run loose and fix you're fence. You'll be fine.


siggy_robinw_tbqslg.jpg
Xavi the galgo and Allen the cat. Missing Iker the galgo ?-Feb.9/19, Treasure (USS Treasure) April 12/01-May 6/13, Phoenix (Hallo Top Son) Dec.14/99-June 4/11 and Loca (Reko Swahili) Oct.9/95 - June 1/09.

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Guest Doggone

Autumn is the fifth dog I've had in my lifetime, but my first greyhound. I wasn't even aware of greyhounds years ago.........

Now, I can't imagine having any other kind; I have never had such a laid-back, cooperative, and low-maintenance dog before. Phenomenal breed. :)

Edited by Doggone

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Our greyhound was my first dog and my husband's first dog as an adult. We didn't expect to adopt one, we didn't go through a specific Greyhound rescue, and it was fine. Use common sense and look up stuff here or in the excellent books recommended above if you have questions. When we were ready to adopt another dog (about 8 months later) we went through a specific Galgo rescue, had done a lot of research on the dogs and knew what to expect.

 

Don't overthink it. There is a lot of information to get wrapped up in.

We still use crates for our boys when we are gone for work days. It keeps them safe when we aren't home and they settle down well in them (better than when they are left out). Some dogs like them some don't, so you may end up getting a crate and not needing it. You can try to borrow one. We knew we would crate initially when we were gone for work so we wanted our first greyhound to stay out of the crate for the evening. We got a bed for him and he has slept there every night since we adopted him over a year ago. Our second sleeps on another bed on the other side of our bed. The crate is usually best placed in a central area of the living space if possible. That can help with them knowing you are really gone and not just in another area of the house.

I would be worried about leaving access to the basement at all times just in case he is not the best stair climber. If you can manage it, don't just leave him alone for a full work day all at once, try going out and doing a few errands on that time that you have off to help him adjust to the setup you will have when he is gone and a routine for when you leave. You may want to get a dog walker at first if you are gone for a full work day.

Like I said, there is a lot of information to get wrapped up in. There isn't really one answer for everything, each dog is a little unique in their own way and they will develop more personality the longer you have them. Our boy loved stuffies to begin with (first thing he did when we brought him home was run into our bedroom and grab a stuffed animal) but didn't learn to fetch until several months in. They are smart. Now he loves to run after stuffed animals and he will bring them back to you and push it towards you to throw again.

Enjoy the trial and error process at the beginning and congratulations on wanting to take the plunge!


GT_signature4_zpsfaaf7821.jpg

Padfoot the greyhound fr. Coach Venom, Joined his forever family: 10-1-13

Lupin the galgo, Joined his forever family: 7-18-14
And the reptiles: Bernie the Bearded Dragon and Tonks the Russian Tortoise

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Frostie was my husband and I's first dog together. We decided on a greyhound after a lot of research. We knew we wanted a dog that would fit our life style and not one we thought was cute and fluffy. Even though Frostie is not fluffy, he is adorable and he chose us. I originally wanted a black greyhound but was asked by our group if I would meet with Frostie. They felt he would make an awesome dog for basically first time dog owners. He was cat friendly, crated well, was house broken and he was a leaner. I met him and he came home with me that day! He is still an amazing dog! He is no longer crated, acts like the cats don't exist, thinks our bed is his and has only had one accident in the house.

 

We have had him for about 8 months and his personality keeps evolving. He loves to chase down his honky pig and his newest obsession is a rope toy. The only naughty things he has done is he ate a sock, but threw it up, ate a wool knit hat, pooped that out and has found out that he loves the taste of the corner of our 12 year old coffee table, even with some bitter yuck spray! But we love him to death and wouldn't change a thing. He now just makes us better housekeepers! If you decide to open your heart to a greyhound you will never regret that decision. My husband and I are hooked!

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First 6 months can be hard, but the years of rewards are worth everything you give over and over!!


5621ebf0-6541-442b-a53f-100a3975572f_zps

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Guest FosterMom2014

Have you considered fostering? Then you will see exactly how the greyhounds are in your home. Just a thought.

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