Herman's Hermits - Mrs. Brown You've Got a Lovely Daughter
For those that aren't aware, the movie by the same name, starring Herman's Hermits, was about a Greyhound. Mrs. Brown is a Greyhound.
I'm Jeanie. I'm a Greyhound. I've been here lots longer than Gracie! You see, mom and dad realized back in 1996 just how wonderful Greyhounds are! We really are incredible dogs! We don't bark a whole lot, though since Gracie came, I've found my voice! We enjoy barking at the mailperson together. And the UPS guy. And pretty much anyone that dares walk past our home. But most Greyhounds are usually relatively quiet. We don't shed as much as, say, a Golden Retriever. Actually, we don't really shed that much, period. Some of us shed more than others, but overall, we aren't that bad. Because we don't have an undercoat as some breeds do, we don't get that "doggy odor" that is common with the less noble breeds. We're gentle and affectionate and love our people dearly, but we're not usually pests about it.
While we're talking about me and my fellow Greyhounds, let's put to rest some common misconceptions. First of all, there are many of us that live with cats and small dogs and everyone does just fine! That isn't to say we're all cat safe (I'm not), but having a cat in the house doesn't mean you can't adopt a Greyhound! You just need to make sure you let your rescue group know so that they can help find a cat safe Greyhound for you. It's also a good idea to take some common sense precautions to ensure that nobody gets hurt. Your rescue group should be able to provide information on safely introducing a Greyhound to a cat (or any other animal in your house). And it probably goes without saying that you should never leave a Greyhound (or any other new animal) with the other animals in your house unsupervised. If you can't supervise, separate!
Second, we don't need tons of exercise. Really. Truth be told, we would prefer to lie around most of the day. Yes, we enjoy walks (ok, not me so much, but more about that later), but honestly, we don't need to go for miles and miles and miles. We get bursts of energy, but again, we don't need to run the equivalent of the Boston Marathon on a daily basis in order to feel fulfilled.
Finally, while a fenced in yard is preferable, it isn't necessary. Some rescue groups require it, but others don't. As long as you are committed to walking your Greyhound several times a day, on a leash, in rain, snow, sleet, hail, dark of night, stomach flu be darned, then so be it. But as sighthounds, we really cannot be trusted off lead in an unfenced area. You just never know what might catch our eye. And unless you can run about 40 mph (which is doubtful - you humans are slow-pokes!), you aren't going to catch us. As sighthounds, we hunt by our sense of sight. We are rather independent, which makes sense. We'd never catch our prey if we were constantly looking over our shoulders to check on you slow humans! What that means for you is, you can call until you're blue in the face, odds are good, we'll be so focused on what we're chasing ,we won't hear you. And if we do, we'll probably ignore you. No offense.
We're great dogs, but we aren't for everyone. If you're considering one of us, you should probably talk to some Greyhound rescue people in your area. They'll be able to answer your questions. Also, there's a great book about Greyhounds called, Retired Racing Greyhounds for Dummies, by Lee Livingood. You can order from Amazon.com if you can't find it at your local bookseller.
Now about me. I'm a brindle girl and was born in December of 1998. My mom really wanted to foster me because she fell in love with my picture and because she knew that I'm what's called a spook. She felt that, as she doesn't work outside of the home and our house is really quiet, she would be able to help me out. What's a spook, you ask? Well, a spook is a really, really shy dog. The most shy dog you can ever imagine. We're afraid of pretty much everything. It took mom about 2 weeks to get me to come out of my crate on my own. Prior to that, she'd put my leash on and gently pull me out to go outside potty. I didn't want to have anything to do with her or dad. With patience and time, I warmed up to them and now I can't imagine life without them! I'm still horrified of strangers, and because of that, I'm not a big fan of walks. I've overcome a lot of my fears (like the fear of the UPS guy - he isn't coming in the house, so he's safe), but I'm still a little quirky. Mom says that super shy dogs like me are more than worth the effort, though. She says we give back a million times more love than we get once we get used to our people. She also says it's been really rewarding watching me overcome some of my fears.
I wasn't the first Greyhound in the house, but I won't be the last. And because of me, mom and dad got interested in the other sighthounds breeds (such as Salukis, Afghan Hounds, Borzois and Ibizan Hounds to name just a few). That's how Gracie came along! And she won't be the last Beezer, either!