Golden State Greyhound Adoption
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A Greyhound owner's manual.
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YOU ARE HERE: Greyhound Dog Adoption > Greyhound Training > Exercise and Leash Control

Exercise and Leash Control

  • Never take your dog out or give them an opportunity to get out of your house, car or backyard without a leash on and in your control.
  • The more you walk, play, and run with your dog in the first few weeks of ownership, the easier the transition from racing greyhound to family friend.
  • We do not recommend extend-o-leashes when walking your hound. Use a regular 6 foot leash. Keep your hound next to your left leg when walking. Walking your hound correctly is an easy way to earn his/her respect and position yourself as the top dog.
  • Your dog needs its daily walks. They will look forward to them.
  • If you take your hound for a run on a beach make sure he/she is in a harness and on leash. Since they are poor swimmers, if they are not leashed and run into the water, it is likely they will drift out and drown.
  • When walking your dog always check to make sure his/her pads are always free from any burrs or other foreign objects. If your dog limps, stops or starts to lag check its paws.
  • Your greyhound does not require any more exercise than any other dog of the same size.
  • Work your dog up to a mile or two the first couple of weeks. Its footpads are soft and need to adjust to new concrete surfaces slowly. Make sure the concrete is not hot. If its paw pad gets blistered it will be a long time before you will be able to take your dog out for its walk again.
  • Your goal should be to build up to a 3 to 4 mile brisk walk.
  • Walk your hound only in the early morning or evening NEVER in the HEAT of the DAY.
  • It may take time for your greyhound to learn to do its business when on a leash. Again be patient. And as a good pet-owning citizen, you should always 'bag' your dog's 'doo'!
  • New Greyhounds have a trait of stopping dead in their tracks and refusing to budge in new surroundings. This usually occurs when they are scared or nervous and don't know exactly what is wanted of them. The best thing to do is to be very patient and offer verbal encouragement. Carry some treats with you in case this happens and entice your hound with food. Another trick is to find your dog a walking companion to show it the way. Sometimes a light tug will be needed to move your dog along.
  • Introduce your new greyhound to your yard or any new fenced area before turning it loose. Check the entire perimeter for potential openings.
  • We discourage dog parks only because many hounds have gotten hurt or been bitten by aggressive dogs. Too many owners bring their aggressive dogs to parks hoping their own will become socialized at the expense of other dogs.
  • Always carry a bottle of water in case your dog gets overheated. Greyhounds may get so excited and interested by a new exercise area that they overtax themselves. Look for signs such as heaving sides, heavy panting, vomiting and wooziness while standing. If this happens, don't let them drink a lot of water fast (they will vomit it back up); instead, walk them slowly and cool them down.
  • Never let your greyhound near a hot barbeque grill.
  • Greyhounds have very short hair on their back and light hair on their bellies. In the summer they are prone to sunburn. Always protect your dog from the sun.
  • When opening a car door or hatch make sure the dog doesn't see a space to escape. Greyhounds can be escape artists. Be overly cautious outside.
  • If you let your dog run, make sure the ground is free from groundhog holes or mole holes. They will easily break a leg if they hit one of the holes.
  • When traveling with your dog always bring a soft washable mat for your dog. Greyhounds do not have a lot of body fat and many do not like sitting or laying on hard surfaces. Your dog will appreciate the mat.
  • Greyhounds have almost no body fat, so they are very poor swimmers. You must monitor your dog whenever it is around swimming pools or other water hazards. If a greyhound falls in they will most surely drown.

Click on the categories below to jump to another section in the guide.

Before Owning a Greyhound Getting Adjusted Getting Acquainted
Housebreaking Crate Training/Separation Anxiety Feeding and Treats
Exercise and Leash Control Hygiene Greyhounds with Children
Toys Stairs Veterinary and Medication
Recommended Items Closing Words Recommended Publicatons