If you have ever seen a greyhound run, whether at the race tracks or in the park, you must have noticed their grace and beauty. Although these beautiful dogs are mostly known for racing, as they can reach amazing speed, they are also known for being one of the best family dogs. But first, let’s have a look at their racing history and what these dogs were used for before.
At first, greyhounds were used to hunt rabbits, deer and even foxes. You can imagine that having a dog that can reach as much as 45 miles per hour can be incredibly useful when hunting. However, in the 1920s racing tracks were introduced in the United States, Ireland and England and greyhounds were of course the perfect choice. Nowadays, Australia also has a very well-developed racing culture. However, on 16 February 2015, the Four Corners television revealed footage and information on live bait being used to train greyhounds. Although the use of small pigs, rabbits and possums is strictly forbidden, investigations found that such practices were still going on. The footage provided by pro-animal activists led to the ban on dog racing, that would take effect on the July 1 2017.
But leaving dog racing aside, greyhounds have fantastic characteristics and make some of the best pets ever, especially for families with children. Many people, myself included, have adopted retired greyhounds and I have to tell you that they make amazing companions and the most loyal and trusted friends. Greyhounds have a pretty similar character to cats, being fairly indifferent to new people, but extremely loving towards their owners and families. They are also very docile, which makes them very easy to train and truly obedient. Unlike their character on the tracks or when hunting, greyhounds are actually calm and lazy and are referred to as couch potatoes, pretty much.
Even if you adopt a retired greyhound, you don’t need to worry if you live in an apartment. As I already mentioned, these dogs are lazy and love to just sleep for hours, especially if you will let them cuddle with you and your kids. Speaking of which, greyhounds are the perfect example of a kid-friendly dog. Gentle and extremely patient towards the many hugs and pulls that kids may tend to show greyhounds, these beautiful creatures can handle even the most devilish of children. Of course, I am merely stating the general characteristics of this breed and stating what I have observed from my own greyhounds. However, keep in mind that dogs, just like humans, are individual and the manner and environment that a dog was raised in plays a just an important part as their breed. And still, I would hesitate in recommending these beautiful dogs to loving people with big families and hearts that are ready to open their homes to greyhounds.