- Greyhound-like dogs have been depicted in hunting scenes since the days of the ancient Egyptians and Greeks.
- By Saxon times, the greyhound was well established in Britain.
- In 1014 the Forest Laws prohibited anyone but nobility from keeping greyhounds near royal forests unless they had been lamed so they couldn't hunt. The Forest Laws helped establish greyhounds as dogs of the nobility, who were more interested in using greyhounds for sport rather than for catching dinner.
- During the 1800s, coursing stag and hare with greyhounds became a favored sport of the upper class.
- By the 1800s, greyhounds were brought to America, where they were used to course game in the Midwestern plains.
- Hare coursing became a spectator sport by holding coursing contests in enclosed parks.
- In 1926, greyhound racing using a mechanical lure was introduced. This began the selection of greyhounds for short bursts of speed, soon establishing them as the fastest breed of dog.
- Today, greyhounds in America are of two divergent types: the more well-known racing, or NGA (National Greyhound Association) greyhound and the less popular AKC greyhound. Retired NGA racing greyhounds make up most of the pet greyhound population.
Greyhound Behavior Concerns
- Makes a loyal and gentle companion.
- Can be clownish at times, but its independent nature may make play frustrating for children. It is not a retriever at heart.
- It is not very good at coming when called, and may tend to run off to chase things, particularly small fast animals.
- If raised with cats, can be good with house cats. Retired racers may or may not be good with cats.
- Good with other dogs and with children.
- Learns quickly, but is easily bored.
- Does best with reward-based training involving food.
Greyhound Suggested Exercises
- Makes a very quiet housedog as long as its exercise needs are met.
- Requires a moderate walk or jog, or a sprint in an enclosed area, every day.
- Most greyhounds should not be let off leash unless the area is securely fenced.
- A few games and tricks provide needed mental exercise.
- Its short hair provides little protection against cold weather. A coatmay bebeneficialin cold weather.
- Coat is short and thin. Some NGA greyhounds have a slightly thicker coat.
- The coat needs weekly brushing and occasional bathing.
- Shedding is below average.
Suggested Greyhound Nutritional Needs
- Greyhound conformation is for a naturally lean build, but owners often overfeed them. You should be able to feel the ribs, but they should not be too noticeable.
- Adult dogs should be fed a balanced diet, with restricted calories if the dog starts to gain too much weight.