What kind of pets do ex-track Greyhounds make?
Greyhounds are affectionate, friendly dogs who thrive on attention and human companionship and make terrific pets. Greyhounds have been bred to be fast, healthy, intelligent, sociable, and good tempered.
Greyhounds spend most of their lives in the company of other dogs, their trainers, and handlers. Greyhounds have all the advantages of breeding and training when it comes to being a good pet. Their social ability makes them great with other pets (including cats). Their temperament makes them wonderful around older children and friends. Their intelligence and breeding make them perfect house pets, clean, quiet, and loving companions.
What is their life expectancy?
These pure-bred athletes enjoy many years of good health. With proper care, they have a life expectancy of twelve or more years.
How much does it cost to own a Greyhound?
Greyhounds cost about a dollar a day to feed and all the love you can afford.
Are they good with children?
More so than most breeds. They are not as playful as puppies, of course, being mature dogs, but they are very tolerant of children and will usually walk away rather than growl or snap if children become overbearing. This is not to say that they can be tormented for long periods of time and still not growl or snap. Even a gentle Greyhound has his limits.
It is the policy of GPA/Greater Orlando to limit Greyhound adoptions to families with children no younger than 5 years of age. It has been our experience that children below this age are more likely to interact with a dog in such a way as to create unsafe conditions for both the child and the dog. Homes with children between the ages of 5 and 7 must have a fenced yard.
How are they with other pets?
Greyhounds are friendly by nature and socialize well as a result of encounters with other Greyhounds in the kennel. The majority of Greyhounds also get along well with indoor cats. GPA/GO does "cat testing" before placing any Greyhound in a home with cats.
Are ex-track Greyhounds already housebroken?
Greyhounds are kennel trained. This means that they are taught not to soil their own space. At the track, Greyhounds are used to the routine of being let out in a turnout pen to answer the call of nature. A Greyhound has never had to tell anyone it has to go out. Until you learn each others body language, you will need to be patient. There may be an accident or two, but this is best avoided by taking your Greyhound out frequently and giving lots of praise when he/she finds the right spot.
It is important to know that Greyhounds, although leash trained, may have to be taught to go to the bathroom while on a lead. This requires a little more time than teaching them where the door is. When letting your Greyhound into your yard to go, don't distract him/her, as you want to let him/her focus on the reason for being outside. When all business is done, then comes playtime and a treat.
Do Greyhounds need a lot of exercise?
Greyhounds naturally love to run, but it is not necessary to give them a lot of exercise. A good, long (20-30 minute) walk several times a week will keep your Greyhound (and you!) in good condition. At the track, Greyhounds are used to running every three days - so you may see a pattern to your dog's energy peaks. You are the best playmate your Greyhound could have and it will take your lead as to how much exercise it needs.
GREYHOUNDS CAN NEVER BE TRUSTED OFF LEASH! A loose Greyhound is a dead Greyhound. Raised in such a sheltered life at the track, a Greyhound has no street smarts when it comes to cars. Greyhounds can run at speeds of up to 45 mph and will chase anything that moves. This would be tragic if this were a car or a neighbor's cat. Because Greyhounds are sighthounds (not scenthounds) a loose one would run so fast and so far that it would just get lost.