Greyhound Adoption Month

“If we get a dog, what kind do you think we should get?”

It seemed like a simple enough question twelve years ago when my husband asked it. But of course, it wasn’t.

I have loved dogs since I was a kid, walking a neighbour’s collie mix nearly every day, and playing with another neighbour’s two Basset Hounds, Jasmine and Velvet (you know, of Hush Puppy fame) every chance I could get. I was the kid that stopped at every house with a dog to pet them as I walked to and from school. So I thought it would be easy figuring out what kind of dog made sense for us.

We agreed we didn’t want the work of a puppy, so that narrowed it down. We wanted something athletic but that didn’t require attention every minute of every day, so that filter was on. We were considering something on the large size, but not huge. Standard Poodle! Wait, those need to get their hair done more often than I do, maybe we think about low-maintenance grooming. And maybe we think about adopting rather than purchasing.

Greyhound. Yes! That fits!

And wouldn’t you know, when we Googled the breed, a Greyhound adoption agency about 30 minutes west of our home. That’s how the lovely four year old dark brindle Mica found her way to us after a decent racing career in New Hampshire. Neither my husband nor I had ever owned a dog before, but we had plenty of help from the adoption agency as well as seasoned dog owners in the family, and – wait for it – a Dummies book. Turns out, there were plenty of other Greyhound owners in our area who could offer support, and we joined a group that met every weekend at a fenced in ball field so the hounds could do what they do best.

The sight of Mica running in full flight left me in awe. The thought of her still does.

Greyhound Adoption Month

Mica and Arrow

A couple of years later, while looking at the adoptables on the agency’s website (which we’d bookmarked, of course), we saw a seven year old tuxedo boy (black with a white chest and black “bow tie”) who’d been at the kennel for some time. We went for a visit with Mica, and came home with Arrow. We “chipped”, in what the retired racing Greyhound circles call adopting a second or third – as in, “they’re like chips – you can’t have just one!”

Both dogs got along very well, playing and snoozing and walking together like they’d been separated at birth. Except for the one time I ever heard Mica bark…turns out Arrow was rearranging the living room furniture by dragging a sofa into the middle of the room (side note: this is not typical Greyhound behaviour).

Over the winter of 2011 – 2012, we unfortunately lost both of them; first Mica to osteosarcoma, and Arrow shortly thereafter with a number of debilitating conditions made worse by accelerating dementia. We were heartsick and so very sad about losing them, and also happy for all the hilarious memories and the ways they brought us together as a team.

Those gentle, kooky creatures that made us laugh so much left a huge void when they left us. Their loss broke our hearts. And eventually, our hearts broke open…wide enough that by the spring of 2012, we took a trip back out to the adoption agency with adopting another hound in mind. We took a sweet red brindle girl out for a walk, and though she was a little shy, she seemed perfect for our re-entry into the world of having a Greyhound.

Greyhound Adoption Month

Kashka

When we went back to sign the paperwork, I handed the leash to my husband and told him I wanted to take one last look in the run, where boys were on the left and girls were on the right…and I locked eyes with a big dark brindle boy with an entirely black face who was quietly staring at me. I knew I had to at least let him out to see how he was with our girl; my husband unclipped her leash, and he flew out of his kennel down the run into the paddock where they raced around together like old friends.

Greyhound Adoption Month

Sniper

Gracing our home from then have been Kashka and Sniper, couch surfers, dog bed lovers, walk and park enthusiasts, and general all around ambassadors for the breed and for pet adoption.

And when I tell you that, of all the thousands of places these Greyhounds are in Canada and the US, that Mica’s grandfather was Sniper’s great grandfather, you could try to tell me she had nothing to do with him finding his way to that agency and then into our home.

But you’ll never convince me that this particular match wasn’t made possible by one – or both! – of our angel hounds.

Thank you Marty for sharing your Greyhound adoption story!

Marty is a communications professional by day, and juggles the roles of sister, wife, daughter, and friend the rest of the time. She enjoys a good book, a good walk with the hounds, a good cup of Forever Nuts and laughing like crazy. One of her core beliefs is that sarcasm is intellect on the offensive.

Author: Kelly Harding with Edie The Pug

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29 Comments

  1. I think Mica and Arrow were very lucky to have been able to spend their retirement in a loving home. I know that they gave as much joy as the love the received. I am glad that Kashka and Sniper are now enjoying a love filled life.

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  2. Oh my goodness!! This is the most delightful & beautiful Adoption story. These were clearly 4 of the Luckiest dogs. I love that these folks rescued two dogs at a time, so wonderful. Thanks for sharing!
    Love & biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

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  3. Beautiful rescue story and beautiful dogs! Thank you for sharing about Greyhound Adoption month.

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  4. Greyhounds are unique and need unique homes. My friend had one who never did master the stairs.

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    • I wonder why they couldn’t master stairs? I’m going to have to look this up.

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  5. What a lovely uplifting post. Our neighbour adopted a greyhound Sadie and I remember being surprised what a wonderful family pet she was. So quiet and sweet in the house. But boy can they run. She was not allowed off leash except in a fenced area.

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    • It’s quite something to see these dogs off leash and free to run.

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  6. Aw, I didn’t realize there was a greyhound adoption month,what a great story to celebrate. Reminds me of Santa’s Little Helper from the Simpsons.

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  7. My cousin in California has been a Greyhound Rescue family for as long as I can remember. They are amazing dogs!!

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  8. What an amazing story. I am so sad for your loss, but I love that you opened your heart again! I also believe your angel dogs helped arrange for your meeting them. Beautiful dogs!

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  9. Greyhounds are really beautiful dogs – I don’t see them very often though. I agree they are amazing runners!

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  10. I’ve never actually seen a greyhound other than in movies or pictures. I’ve always heard they are great dogs though. Sure sounds like it too. You were blessed with very special ones!

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  11. Such a lovely story. I absolutely believe that our angel dogs help us find our new dogs. I have no doubt that Mica and Arrow helped you find Sniper and Kashka.

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    • Maybe Mr.N needs a friend?

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  12. I’ve heard great things about greyhounds. Great post! I’ve loved dogs since I was a kid too!

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  13. Awesome post! When I was younger I volunteered at a greyhound rescue and ever since have loved the breed, although I’ve never owned one myself.

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    • Thank you! How wonderful that you volunteered at a rescue.

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  14. Greyhounds are such special dogs! If i had room for more dogs in my house greyhounds would be up there on the list!

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  15. Greyhounds are really such a unique breed. They have such a gentle spirit. Thank you for sharing such a sweet story.

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    • I love these success stories 🙂

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  16. What a wonderful story, adoption is the best and greyhounds are such graceful beautiful dogs

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    • They are truly graceful.

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  17. We meet up with two Greyhounds at the dog park – and they are so much fun! Very gentle and frisky – we play for about 30 minutes (my little legs can’t keep up but they keep coming back for me) and woot, it’s a joy!!

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    • I don’t think Edie could come close to keeping up with a greyhound either 😉

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  18. I remember the first time I saw a greyhound running at Fiesta Island in San Diego (which is a gigantic off-leash area). Truly an amazing sight, lucky you for having the privilege of living with multiple greyhounds.

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    • Seeing a greyhound run is truly an amazing site!

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