Did you know?
Only one breed of dog is mentioned by name in the Bible: Greyhounds. (Proverbs 30:29-31, King James Version)
When the world is kicking you in the teeth, isn’t it just wonderful to have the love of a beautiful dog? – Pauline Jefferey
Greyhounds may be the most ancient purebred dogs. They originated in Egypt but were established throughout Europe and the Orient well before the Christian era.
Often presented as gifts by the nobility, they were originally only bred by the ruling classes.
Greyhounds have been used to hunt just about all small game as well as stag, gazelle, wolf, and boar. When dog racing and hare coursing became popular sports, this dog was a natural competitor. Capable of speeds exceeding 40 mph, these hounds in their element are the picture of strength and grace. They have a double suspension gallop which means they run like a cheetah, not like a horse. When running, they spend 80% of their time in the air. It is as close to “flight” as a land animal can get.
Photos displayed courtesy of Ann Fessenden, Windwood Perm Reg’d, British Columbia
Males range in height from 28″ to 30″ tall (71-76 cm) and females stand between 26 and 28 inches (67-71 cm) tall. The slim, muscular dog has a short, smooth coat that may be any colour or combination of colours. Minimal grooming is required.
Unfortunately, these dogs typically have a short racing career, and since they live 12 to 14 years, there are almost always adult dogs looking for adoption into loving homes. Check out our Rescue page for links to adoption organizations.
Greyhounds are friendly, gentle, sensitive dogs. Generally quiet, they prefer a calm environment and do best when they have a predictable routine. Intelligent, affectionate, and devoted, they will not be happy if they are excluded from the family group. A clean family pet, this breed is an excellent pet for children.
As a sighthound, these dogs can see clearly for half a mile and have a natural tendency to chase anything small that moves! Cats and other household pets may trigger these instincts. They will make good watch dogs as they are generally aloof with strangers.
Early training and socialization are important, but since they are sensitive animals, harsh training methods are not appropriate. Greyhounds appreciate an unrestricted run a couple of times per week. Ex-racers may be a challenge to control when off-leash. However, training should address this issue. Dogs raised from puppies in a non-racing environment should not be a problem off-leash provided they have had the appropriate obedience training.
As for all dogs, a fenced yard is a sensible precaution. At home, a dog running 40 mph across the yard will likely not even notice your electric fencing!
Greyhound Club of Canada
Greyhound Trust and Alliance
Waterloo Area Greyhound Group
Greyhound Club of America
Canadian Sighthound Field Association
Canadian Amateur Racing Association (C.A.R.A.)
Alberta Lure Coursing Association
Aspen Grove Sighthound Association
Ontario Lure Coursing Association
After the Track Greyhound Adoption
Greyhound League, Northwest Canadian
Greyhound Relocation & Adoption
Greyhound Supporters & Adoption
Adopt-A-Greyhound of Central Canada
Greyhound Lovers of Hamilton Wentworth
Greyhound Pets of Atlantic Canada
Maritime Greyhound Adoption Program
Greyhound Rescue Quebec
Greyhound Pets Inc.
League of Extraordinary Greyhounds
Northern Sky Greyhounds