Adopt a Greyhound Month – ‘it was love at first sighthound!’

This Adopt a Greyhound Month, we have been busting the myths that surround this beautiful breed. To help us show them off for what they really are, we have spoken to a family who recently rehomed a Greyhound named Kit.

We're Jess and Jack, and this is our Greyhound, Iroko (or Iroh, for short)! Previously 'Kit', he was rescued from the racing lifestyle. We adopted him from the lovely team at NAWT Berkshire just last month. He is settling in well to his new home with us, here in "sunny" Cornwall.

Have you ever owned a Greyhound before?

    No! We have both had family dogs most of our lives, but never a greyhound!

    What made you decide to rehome a Greyhound?

    We felt it was the right time to get a dog, and knew it needed to be the right one to fit in with our lifestyle. I always had large, boisterous dogs growing up, and Jack always had medium sized, calm dogs. Therefore, Greyhounds seemed like the perfect mix of larger size and calm temperament. Jack and I are both lucky to have flexible working hours and can work from home. So, a dog that was happy to chill out while we were in meetings, and then have a little blast of energetic fun in the garden, was another tick in the Greyhound box! Many of our friends and family have dogs, so it was important to us to find a dog that will get on well with others. After enquiring after a lurcher at NAWT Cornwall, who sadly was not a perfect fit for us, they kindly put us in touch with the Berkshire branch to see 'Kit'. And it was love at first sighthound!

    What impact has Iroh had on you as a family?

    Iroh has had a big impact on us. Having never had a Greyhound before, Jack and I are learning all about this sweet and quirky breed together, and we are working as a team to help Iroh feel part of our little family. We moved house last summer to a part of Cornwall we don't know very well, and Iroh is helping us to get out about, exploring our new local area. He's also a beautiful dog, and many of our neighbours and fellow dog walkers, love to stop and give him a fuss and tell him how handsome he is. So, he's helping us make friends too.

    What does an average day look like for Iroh?

    We start an average day being greeted at the bottom of the stairs by a happy, waggy dog. Then, we go straight into the garden for 10 mins for ablutions and to explore, followed by breakfast. I work from home most of the time, so Iroko keeps me company and amused between emails. Between him sleeping, totally stretched out with legs in the air (called 'roaching'), to foraging away in his snuffle mat and playing with his toys. He plays like no other dog I've known, very non-destructive, very cat-like, and generally only interested in smaller toys. I love it when he pounces on them, then throws them up in the air. After about 15 minutes of that he's back to sleep for another hour. We go into the garden throughout the day, we play, and I usually get treated to a ‘zoomie’… or 3! Sometimes we go for a little walk at lunch time, and Iroh already knows which way the local meadows are. He mostly walks beautifully on the lead and is such a gentleman to all the people and dogs we meet along the way. He likes to watch the horses, and if he catches an interesting scent, we try to follow it a bit - who knew sight hounds also had an impeccable sense of smell! By the time we get home, he's ready for a big nap. Once Jack is home, it's time for dinner. Iroh likes to potter about in the kitchen with us, before settling down for bedtime. He's such a sweet boy, he's been with us for nearly 4 weeks now and he's really starting to come out of his shell and show us his funny side. He often likes to 'help' out around the house by gathering any shoes and slippers he finds and puts them on his bed! We recently found half a loaf of bread on the sofa - totally unharmed!

    Would you rehome a Greyhound again?

    Yes - in a heartbeat. They are such soft, sweet dogs and so deserving of a loving home after life on the track.

    What would you say to someone who is considering rehoming a Greyhound?

    Please go for it! You'll be amazed how sweet and cuddly these gentle giants are. I also had no idea what a wide range of sizes they come in. Iroh is as tall as a German Shepherd and weighs about 34kg. We have met smaller dogs, who's owners have said "he's a big lad!" but we also met a large girl on a walk (50kg!) that made Iroh look like a whippet! Regardless of size, they really don't take up much space, and are quiet dogs. Be prepared for them to not quite understand your home environment - they may have never been in a house before. Stairs make no sense to many of them. Remember they can probably reach your worktops, so try and be cautious not to leave things in easy reach - at least to begin with (hence the loaf of bread incident). And lastly, but most importantly - give them time and space. Their entire life has been turned on its head, their familiar surroundings, their kennel mates, their routine etc has gone. They will do their best to adapt to their new world, but it takes time. Take things slowly to begin with and remember the 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 months rule. They are utterly fabulous dogs.

    Thank you so much to Jess and Jack for taking the time to answer these questions for us. It’s been so nice to hear how well Iroh has been settling in.

    Please remember, not all Greyhounds that have come into us have come from a racing background. Also, some Greyhounds have been in a house previously, every Greyhound is different. It is always worth speaking with our centre to find out more information if you have seen a dog that you feel may make a great addition to your home.

    To see our dogs that are looking for homes, please click here.

    See below pictures of Iroh looking happy in his new home.