Go Greyhound

By: Pam Wiese Email
By: Pam Wiese Email

They are one of the oldest purebred dogs and pretty speedy, but there are a few things you need to know before adopting a greyhound.

The Nebraska Humane Society advises potential adopters to do some research if they want a specific breed. Breed characteristics can provide good guidelines to help you math up with a pet that fits into your lifestyle.

One of the oldest of the purebred dogs dating back before the pharaohs of Egypt are greyhounds. These dogs date back about 8,000 years and originally began as the dog of kings. In ancient times, no commoner could own a greyhound.

Today, more greyhounds are bred for racing and many pets are ex-racers. These dogs are “sight hounds.” They have to be fast enough to keep prey in sight. They can reach speeds of 45 mph and can see clearly for more than a half-mile.

“P.J.” just finished a very long racing career. He has been a track dog most of his life so his home life will be new to him. He might not know how to do stairs and some floor surfaces can cause him to pause. Still, greyhounds are terrific house dogs. They don't need a track and are content with a walk or two a day, a fenced-in yard to run in and a puffy bed to curl up on. They're known as 45 mph coach potatoes.

Like most greyhounds, P.J. has an easy going temperament and laid back attitude. He's been great on field trips and seems to fit in just about anywhere. However, due to his long career of chasing small, furry lures, the Humane Society isn’t comfortable putting P.J. in a home with small dogs and cats that could be mistaken for prey.

With a life span of about 12 years or more, greyhounds can offer years of gentle companionship and after a childhood spent in a kennel, these guys are genuinely happy to simply spend time just being pets.

The Nebraska Humane Society at 8929 Fort Street in Omaha is open weekends from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and weekdays 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. You can always look up animals and find information at nehumanesociety.org.

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