Greyhounds: Made for Speed and At Risk for Arthritis

April 15, 2020

Every month, we will highlight a popular dog breed at risk for arthritis. We will talk about what we love about them, as well as reflect on how to keep them healthy. Since April is Adopt a Greyhound month, we are dedicating this month’s breed blog to this beautiful dog. Learn more about this athletic breed of dog, why we love them and how to keep them healthy.

Greyhounds are a unique dog breed: they are built for speed. From the long and narrow head to the curve of their chest and highly tucked waist, these dogs are dramatically beautiful and sleekly built. They have historical roots dating back to Egypt over 5,000 years ago where they were at the sides of noblemen, looking elegant and majestic. Some believe their thick shock-absorbing pads of their feet were built by Ancient Egypt’s hot deserts, where they were some of the first dogs to roam.

The World’s Fastest Dogs

Racing Greyhound

Today, the greyhound is not one of the fastest dog breeds, but actually THE fastest one. On the racetrack, the can reach 45 mph in just 30 feet. But they are also just as quick to enjoy snuggles on the couches around the world. Sweet and personable, they really are a lap dog.

It’s controversial how many greyhounds were used for racing. Some of these dogs were used only for their speed then often placed in animal shelters when they were too old to race. Now, there are several non-profits working to have these dogs adopted after their racing days.

Greyhound Non-Profits Helping Out

Interested in adopting a greyhound? Here are your resources.

In the U.S., The Greyhound Project is a non-profit organization created with the mission to promote the welfare and the adoption of greyhounds. They have a great tagline: “Adopt a greyhound, make a fast friend!” They have indicated there is a big need for adoption of greyhounds.

As part of the COVID-19 social distancing, many greyhound racetracks are closed. In Florida alone, there are 5,000 dogs looking for a home because they were located at racetracks throughout the state. Some tracks are racing without fans, even while the U.S. has discontinued live racing because of the virus. The organization asks you to work with your local facility to help relocate these dogs, if you are willing to foster. For more information, check out the main news section on their homepage.

Here are some great commercials from this organization showing why you should adopt a greyhound from The Greyhound Project.

There are several commercials, all of them are adorable. Be sure to check out their YouTube page!

Breed Standards

2 dogs greyhounds

Another interesting fact about greyhounds is their coloring is so unique, certainly no two greyhounds are alike. But they do have breed standards. They are:

  • AKC Breed Popularity: Ranks 145 of 195
  • Height: 71 - 76 cm (male), 68 - 71 cm (female)
  • Weight: 29.5 - 32 kg (male), 27 - 30 kg (female)
  • Life Expectancy: 10-13 years
  • Group: Hound Group

 

Myths about Greyhounds

Lovely greyhound

There are many myths out there about greyhounds. Let’s set the record straight right now.  

Myth: Greyhounds are hyperactive and need a lot of exercise.

Reality: Greyhounds are gentle and affectionate dogs that need daily activity, just as all dogs do. What makes greyhounds great racing dogs is the fact they are so fast, not that they need to run for a long time. If you get a greyhound, plan on walking them just as you would any other dog.

Myth: Greyhounds are outdoor dogs.

Reality: Greyhounds are indoor dogs. They have thin skin and fur, which means they do better in a climate-controlled environment rather than the elements of the outside world.

Myth: Greyhounds are not good with children.

Reality: Greyhounds are like most dogs: they are great with families and children, when played with appropriately. 

Myth: Greyhounds are always thin.

Reality: Greyhounds need to be kept trim to stay in good health. Their bodies are accustomed to having little amount of fat. A general rule is for there to be the last three ribs visible and/or easy to feel. 

Top Health Problems of Greyhounds

The good news about greyhounds is they are overall very healthy dogs.

Canine Hip & Elbow Dysplasia. Greyhounds rely on their speed and body, but just as athletes can injure themselves, so can the graceful greyhound.  

Osteoarthritis, or arthritis. Greyhounds can get arthritis and are at high risk because they are so athletic and spend much of their time racing. It is important to make regular assessments of your dog’s mobility. Try taking the Arthritis Quiz every 6 months to help prompt you what you should be looking for. It is always a good idea to use joint supplements for greyhounds as a preventative measure to keep their joints in good health for as long as possible.

Arthritis is as painful for dogs as it is for humans. And just like humans, there is something you can do about it. Learn more about arthritis in dogs and check out all the risk factors.

Protection and Prevent Joint Issues in Greyhounds

Greyhound

Greyhounds are typically active and healthy most of their lives. The key is to keep them that way. Here are the top ways to keep your greyhound in tip-top health:

Exercise: While the greyhound does not need constant exercise, they do need to stretch their legs. Often it is recommended that you have a yard for your greyhound to do some excellent open running. Think of your greyhound as a sprinter. They are fast and mighty but they do not need to run for a long period of time. Keep them exercising and they are great leash walkers, not pulling as other larger breeds might.

Preventative Care: Protect and strengthen their joints safely and naturally by adding a joint supplement to your greyhound’s diet. Most dogs need joint supplements by age 8. But since the greyhounds are often running early in age, they should take joint supplements earlier than other dogs. Joint supplements can promote joint health and cartilage development which keep dogs active and youthful, longer.

Glyde™ Mobility Chews

Parnell Living Science are the experts on arthritis in dogs and cats. As the creators of Glyde Mobility Chews, we developed a unique formula with proven levels of anti-inflammatory ingredients to combat the signs of aging. Glyde uses natural, gluten-free ingredients to promote healthy joints to let your dog do everything he or she loves. Glyde is the only supplement that contains proven levels of three key components that work to relieve the painful signs of arthritis.

Glyde's proven formula has all-natural ingredients and high levels of glucosamine and chondroitin, plus Green Lipped Mussel (GLM). The proven levels of these key ingredients are what makes the formula unique:

No matter your choice, greyhounds will benefit from joint supplements. Why not give them the best arthritis supplement for dogs? Give your greyhound's joints the power it needs for longevity and new life. 

More information

Need more reasons to love a greyhound? Here you go!

 

Special thanks to the organizations out there dedicated to finding homes for greyhounds. They also helped with the content in this article. 

Greyhounds Run on Glyde

 

Be sure to share this in honor of April's Adopt-A-Greyhound Month!

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