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Greyhound Behaviour


Guest Bozzy1272
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Guest Bozzy1272

Hi,

 

I am new to this forum and new to Greyhound ownership.

 

We adopted our boy just over 3 months ago. He has certainly settled in as far as learning routines etc. and is walked every day.

 

From day 1 we had him in his own bedroom at night with a baby gate as recommended by the adoption agency. He is well toilet trained and generally well behaved.

 

He is home during the week with my wife and kids, with me seeing him morning and night and weekends.

 

I have always demonstrated affection with him, often giving him a cuddle and kiss. He has shown occasions of sleep aggression and growling when asked to do something he didn't want to do, like going to bed.

 

In 99 % of instances I was the recipient of this behaviour. Incidents of this decreased over time and I thought I was building a bond with him.

 

Recently however he has stopped greeting me when I get home from work and will spend most of his day / night in his room or outside away from the family.

 

Only last night he growled at me twice when I went to pet him. He was on his bed but was wide awake and responsive before hand.

 

I told him it was naughty - Not very firmly I might add, and put him to bed without the usual show of affection. This morning he wouldn't come out of his room. Finally he came out to try some breakfast, which he didn't eat, then went straight back again.

 

My wife says I pet him too often and he probably wants to be left alone.

 

Is this usual behaviour for a Greyhound and could the level of attention I try to give him actually be having a reverse effect?

 

We are only new to this and would appreciate any suggestions.

 

Thanks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Did you have a vet look at him? I always get suspicious when my boys act out of the ordinary that they could have a health issue.

On the other hand 3 month is a very short time to be a new famimly member. I'm not a fan of letting dogs sleep in their own rooms in the beginning. I like to be able to react if anything happens at night. And sleeping together helps the bonding procedure immensly.

Our dogs sleep in the bedroom with us on their comfy dog beds. Only the oldest decided not do stairs anymore and stays in the living room at night - but he is kind of guard dog anyway and sleeps in front of the big sliding doors with the best look at the outside.

Your dog needs time and patience to feel safe in your home. Some of them need a whole year or longer. In this time you will see more and more of their beautiful personality. Think about it like someone taking you to a strange planet, dropping you off and telling you "do like the locals - they are nice. No problem."

But you are alone in an unknown surrounding, don't know what those creatures want you to do and you are absolutely not used to living in their environment.

It can be overwhelming at times. With time and patience you will come around - and so will he.

Sorry for butchering the english language. I try to keep the mistakes to a minimum.

 

Nadine with Paddy (Zippy Mullane), Saoirse (Lizzie Be Nice), Abu (Cillowen Abu) and bridge angels Colin (Dessies Hero) and Andy (Riot Officer).

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Let sleeping dogs lie. Rex could fool anyone into thinking he was wide awake when he was sleeping with his eyes open and some dogs are just bed territorial. I know nothing but my advice would be don't go to him right now but let him come to you (especially if you happen to be sitting in the living room with a few hot dog slices or similar with your back to him)...rinse and repeat.

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Guest DarkHorse

In my opinion, the best way to bond is with walks and feedings. You may not be able to do the second (depends on the hours you're working), but walks should always be feasible, even if it's only once or twice a week.

 

Otherwise, it's best to let him come to you, as Pam says. You can invite him over if you're sitting down and see him up and about, but don't go to him. Just hold out a hand and call his name. If he comes, great. If not, let him be.

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Adopters in the US are not generally advised to have their dogs sleep alone in a room.

 

Dogs are happiest with their "pack," and that's you and your family now.

 

Putting him "in his room" as punishment for growling won't teach him anything--and it sounds like you really are the one who needs to learn to stop doing whatever it is you're doing when he growls.

 

If he doesn't come to greet you anymore, it could mean he's comfortable with the rest of the family now, so you're not so exciting!

 

It's good to let them seek out attention and not always be the one to approach them. But I wouldn't keep him confined in a room away from everyone else every night.


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

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Guest Scouts_mom

I agree he should be sleeping in the same room as his family, or at least some of hiss family.

 

I also wonder how you are "petting" him. Greys don't usually like vigorous, thumping petting which a lab would love. Grey's go more for gentle stroking.

 

Finally, I suggest that you really try to be the one that feeds him at least one meal a day. Can you give him his breakfast before you leave for work? Giving him his food will really help him bond with you.

 

Finally, as other have said, give him and you time.

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It sounds a bit like you're not in the US, so some of the advice you'll get here is different from what you might get from your adoption agency. If that's not the case, please disregard this sentence! :P

 

Dogs don't "get" time outs for doing something "naughty." They are smart but not particularly associative in that regard. In addition it sounds like this dog has not particularly bonded with your family if he is spending most of his time in "his room" away from everyone else. Greyhounds are generally social dogs and they prefer to be with their pack rather than off by themselves. There are greyhounds that do, of course, but generally they are usually more "velco" dogs than not. And many greyhounds will feel comfortable spending a certain amount of time sleeping in a quiet room once they feel comfortable with their living situation. But mostly they will be near by.

 

You don't describe how the dog reacts during the week when he is with the rest of the family, but it could very well be that he doesn't feel bonded with you, or that he knows you well enough. You have already gotten good advice about how to strengthen your bond with him - feed him, walk him, spend quiet time together, take him out in the garden and play one-on-one. I would also have him sleep in your bedroom, if that is at all possible.

 

Also, you really don't want to correct growling as that can teach the dog to skip that step in the communication chain. Dogs have relatively few ways to tell us how they feel about what's going on with them and growling is just one. It's not a form of aggression on it's own, it's a vocalization that can only have meaning in context. Until you have a better eye for reading his signals, it's probably best for you (and any young children you may have in the home) to call the dog to you for petting and affection.

 

And, as far as every greyhound I've ever met is concerned, there is no such thing as "too much petting!"

Chris - Mom to: Lilly, Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

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Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom

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Take him for walks. Feed him. Do exercise time, or fun training time with him. Make yourself an important, fun part of his life. Affection is not enough. Dogs are really simple creatures. Do things that matter to them, and you will matter to them. Don't do things that matter to them and you won't matter to them. It sounds to me me like you don't matter right now.

 

To me it sounds like you're expecting a relationship without earning it. So - MAKE a relationship. Earn it by doing what the dog cares about.

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Guest katie_dog

I'm in the US. My greyhound sleeps on a dog bed in the room she spends the most time in during the day and that is a living room. She doesn't go upstairs to our bedroom because the stairs are steep and she doesn't want to climb them. Maybe we could teach her how to climb them, but my husband also has mild dog allergies so he doesn't want her in our bedroom. She has slept in the living room since we got her about 4 months ago and it has worked out fine. She is very closely bonded to me. I also work from home so I am around the house during the day a lot too. Maybe since she gets to be around me during the day she has no problem sleeping by herself. I think it is also good for her to have some time to herself and time with other family members besides me.

 

I agree with what others are saying about having the dog come to you or just don't pet the dog when he is lying on his bed. He might just want to be left alone when he is on his bed.

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Guest Bozzy1272

Thanks to everyone for the advice. It sounds like I have more work to do to build the relationship and in the meantime will have him approach me, rather than going to his bed. The feeding suggestion is good too. I have suggested to having him share our room however my wife believes it will disrupt his routine and objects to the idea. Hopefully more walks and feeding will do the trick.

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Oh and dogs often are nosy creatures. When I want one of mine to get interested in what I do I make a big secret of it. Turning my back to them, talking in my excited voice, let them look just a bit tan turning my back again. It's like a dance. I started this with a package of extra yummie treats. And it's a game now and everyone gets excited.

And the treats go to the boys in the end.

Sorry for butchering the english language. I try to keep the mistakes to a minimum.

 

Nadine with Paddy (Zippy Mullane), Saoirse (Lizzie Be Nice), Abu (Cillowen Abu) and bridge angels Colin (Dessies Hero) and Andy (Riot Officer).

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  • 2 weeks later...

I had a trauma dog who took a while to come out of his shell. Everyone else's advice is great -- lots of walks, be patient, and when he's in his bed, leave him alone. Bed is magical safe space. The kids when they have friends over now lecture them immediately to leave him alone when he's in his bed, no matter how much he looks like he could use some affection when he's in there. He is no longer shy about coming out and demanding affection from everyone now. But walks, walks, walks.

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was he crated or used to a bed when you first got him? i'm not sure of the practice in your country. if he was used to containment at night then maybe giving him what he was accustomed to and keeping him in your room will help. he may have too much freedom and feel lost. and yes, the walking, feeding, grooming, and training activites all help form a relationship.

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