Thinking about getting a dog? If you want a dog that has a tall, slender, elegant build, sleek easy-care coat, is extremely athletic and graceful, can run swiftly and jump great heights, has a calmness and quiet dignity, and is polite with people and other dogs, then a greyhound may be the right dog for you! You are taking on a true thoroughbred that has been “men’s best friend” for thousands of years if you decide to welcome the greyhound in your home!
We’ve prepared some interesting facts about greyhounds that’ll help you realize whether this intelligent, gentle dog breed, is just what you need!
The Greyhound belongs to a family of hunting dogs, called sighthound. It hunts by noticing the movement of a prey animal across a great distance, running the animal down with lightning speed.
Tracing back over 8,000 years to early cave sketches and ancient Egyptian artefacts, greyhounds are one of the oldest breeds of dogs.
The origin of the name greyhound has many different explanations.
One theory is the original greyhound was mostly grey in colour.
Another theory is that the name comes from the Old English “grei”- dog and “hundr”-hunter.
Some believe that because the dog first reached England through the Greeks, the name may have come from the term Greekhound.
The greyhound today continues to be the same noble dog portrayed in art and literature throughout history.
The greyhound has long been associated with royalty.
From the 11th to the 14th century, English law declared that no “mean person” should be allowed to have a greyhound.
For thousands of years, greyhounds were raised to hunt.
Greyhounds are the fastest breed of dog, reaching a speed of over 40 miles per hour.
Being graceful and athletic, the greyhound has the power for an easy manoeuvre anticipating his prey’s every move.
Continued cautious breeding and treatment over the years have made the greyhound a most intelligent, affectionate companion.
With the introduction of greyhound track racing, as well as dog shows, the breed varied into show and racing types, with the racing type being far the more populous.
In recent years an intensive effort to find homes for retired racers has raised the public’s gratitude for the breed’s great pet potential.
The greyhound is built for speed with an efficient and muscular body.
Greyhounds have a long neck and head. Their ears are usually folded flat against the neck when the dog is relaxed, but prick forward when the greyhound is at attention. The side is slightly arched, the chest is deep, and the waist is narrow, giving the dog a characteristic appearance.
Greyhounds’ coat is short and smooth and very easy to maintain.
Greyhounds’ coat comes in many colours including white, fawn, red, grey, and brindle.
Fundamentally, the greyhounds have no body fat, and if you decide to be its guardian you should provide the dog with soft places to rest, or pressure sores can easily develop.
The male greyhound is between 26 and 30 inches tall and weighs around 65 to 70 pounds.
The female greyhound weighs about 60 to 65 pounds less than the male.
The greyhound has a gentle and quiet disposition.
As the greyhound was used to hunt and run in groups, aggressiveness toward other dogs has almost been totally eliminated from the breed.
The dog does have a strong prey drive, so be careful if you’ve got rabbits in your home.
Although greyhounds have a strong chase instinct, it is possible for them to live with other pets as long as sufficient time is given for socialization and training.
Some greyhounds can be trained to live happily with cats and other small pets, and sometimes, they even become the best of friends!
The greyhound is often accepting children and, being non-aggressive, will usually walk away from provocation rather than snap or bark.
Greyhounds are as good with children as any dog breed and even better than most, because of their gentleness. They have been around people all of their lives and are generally very people-oriented.
The greyhound is quite happy to spend most of the day sleeping, despite his great athletic ability.
The greyhound would gladly doze quietly next to you, often on their backs, with all four legs in the air!
The dog doesn’t have a lot of stamina and actually requires less exercise time than most dogs.
For a family who wants a large dog, but one that is streamlined and clean, the greyhound is just perfect.
The greyhound is a mediocre shedder, and the short coat does not require a lot of grooming.
For the dog to run, a safe place is needed, but long periods of exercise are not required, unlike what some assume.
Fans of greyhounds often say that this dog breed has two speeds: all-out sprint and total couch potato.
The breed has been called the “40 mph couch potato.”
The greyhound is a friendly pack-oriented breed and will gladly adopt a family as his own.
Greyhounds are low-maintenance, gentle, and laid-back dogs.
Greyhound puppy is an adorable addition to your family, but usually, the greyhounds are available for adoption after their racing days are over.
The majority of greyhounds leave racing between 3 and 5 years of age, so they are still young dogs with a long life ahead of them.
Cleopatra, Queen Elizabeth I of England, and General Custer were some of the historic figures who were captivated by this breed.
The benefaction of the two queens led to greyhound racing being called the “Sport of Queens.”
Do you have any interesting or fun facts about greyhounds that we’ve missed? Share them here in the comments section below!