Just another manic greyhound Monday

We were right to panic – my daughter came home at lunchtime taking a friend for moral support. As she opened the door the smell hit her – Hippie had opened the door to the lounge and messed on the carpet. My daughter’s friend’s only comment was:

‘It looks and smells as if a shire horse has been in here.’

But that wasn’t all – Hippie had destroyed one end of my hall carpet – it was in tatters with underlay scattered around.

My daughter rang me saying:

‘She’s trashed the house!’

I rang the rescue place to ask for advice – the lady was kind but obviously thought I was bringing the dog back. When I asked if there was anything that would help her to settle she suggested having another greyhound. I think I became speechless at that point but then I had sudden memories of the greyhounds I had seen before we became owners, they all started off as one dog out walking but within days there were two, so obviously this is the answer – they don’t miss you if they have a friend for company.

Top tip – It is all much easier if you already have a dog or if you want to adopt two greyhounds.

The lady must have realised from my stunned silence that I didn’t want another dog as she then mentioned an indoor kennel, even offered to loan me one. I rang my partner and asked him what he thought – he said I should buy my own kennel as it would cost a lot to pick up and drop off and we might need it for a long time. He went to the pet store and bought an indoor cage type kennel for £70.

Of course I had to go home and face whatever devastation Hippie had caused in the time between my daughter leaving and me getting home – around twenty minutes……..

A rescue greyhound – the first day!!!

The first puddle on her first night was on my lounge carpet and was more like a lake, but, as all the books say:

Do not scold after the event, just clean it up and treat the area with water mixed with a biological detergent to kill the smell – the dog will not go there again’.

Poppycock! It didn’t matter how much it was cleaned she kept going back to it and we became paranoid people standing outside in coats and boots encouraging the dog to do it outside. Looking back she must have thought we were insane – I think we were at the time!

She was also very jumpy, the least little sound and she panicked I just knew then that this was not going to be easy. Also she followed anybody that moved (and that continues – though to a lesser degree) – she was continually on the go.

We got through the first evening and eventually she went to bed on her duvet in the corner of my daughter’s room.

Peace at last (for me at least – I wasn’t on the night shift)

A Rescue Greyhound? Why not?

I think it was the sight of the rear end of a greyhound rushing through my bungalow on the way to her bed with a nice warm freshly baked baguette clutched between her jaws and sticking out either side of her front end that made me finally get around to writing this.

 

Hippie has been a part of our family for almost ten weeks now and this epistle is set to dispel all the rose coloured rumours put about by the people who want you to adopt a greyhound. Don’t get me wrong we love her dearly but oh boy has it been a journey so far!!

 

To begin, let me take you back several months to a time when my daughter and I were ‘dog free’ in our small bungalow. We have a six-year-old cat, very large and very beautiful, name of Max (on a good day), he rules the house as all cats do, but we love him.

 

Then there is Hendrix the guinea pig, small and quite friendly although I don’t find him very interesting (he’s my daughter’s pet) – all he does is warble when I open the fridge door because he knows the carrots are in there and he does like a carrot.

 

We live a quiet life, or we did until my daughter decided to ‘pin me down to a dog decision’.

 

I had always said that after the death of my fox terrier some years ago the only dog I would entertain in my home would be a greyhound. Why? Forget the size, I had been told that they do not shed their coat, bark very rarely and have no oil in their coat so no ‘wet dog smell’. I do believe that the animals that live in our home should be ‘home friendly’, and that means nose and ear friendly. But I was unprepared for my daughter’s insistence on the new addition.

 

We were on holiday with my son and his wife last November happily sitting by the bar when my daughter asked me yet again if she could get her dog. I gave all the usual excuses, Max, the cost, the cleaning up after it, but nothing stopped her. Eventually I turned to my son and asked him what he thought of the idea and my objections, I was hoping for some common sense but should have known better – he thought it was a brilliant idea. Fuelled by alcohol we drew up a contract whereby my daughter must clear up after said animal and pay for all related costs and have no more tattoos or piercings for the next ten years. The contract was signed and witnessed and the only part of it that haunts me now is the related costs bit – we returned home and the search began.

 

We looked on the internet and learned that all rescue greyhounds are ‘couch potatoes’ that sleep for sixteen hours a day, only need two ten minute runs a day instead of hours of walking and can live with cats. It all sounded marvellous – too good to be true?????

 

My daughter, who was very aware of her contractual obligations, started to buy items for the new arrival. A large space was cleared in a corner of her bedroom and a double duvet with covers was purchased (greyhounds need soft bedding – they get sores from lying on hard surfaces). She also bought a raised feeding bowl set; the breed cannot digest their food properly if they eat at floor level.

 

She approached some greyhound rescue establishments and we were invited to one of them in Nottinghamshire to be ‘checked out’. The people that owned the centre were more than cautious of our lives and suitability to re-home one of their dogs, we told them we worked all day but that we would go home at lunchtime to check the animal. But they were less than impressed; they did, however, let us walk one of the hounds and arranged for our home and garden to be checked out.

 

The dog we were given to walk was six years old and I voiced my reservations to my daughter, saying that it would be better to have a ‘younger model’ if she wanted to enjoy the fun side of the animal’s nature.

 

This, too, seemed to be frowned upon by the owners but they did say they would look for a young female for us if our home checked out okay.