Greyhounds are famous for their reputation as racing dogs and for their sleek silhouette, which is plastered across buses all over America. Their supermodel bodies are tall and thin, standing around 2 or 2 ½ feet tall and usually weighing between 50 and 75 pounds.
The Greyhound is built for speed, and their graceful bodies exude athleticism and agility. Although they are fast, they can be a little dainty. Their lithe bodies are so low in body fat that Greyhounds get chilly very easily. They love to sport sweaters and stay indoors during extremely cold weather. They are built for speed, not endurance, so they are sometimes prone to laziness if they do not receive enough opportunities to exercise or run in a fenced in yard. Greyhounds work in short bursts of energy, but they also love to snooze, which means they are generally quiet and relaxed indoors. Greyhounds have some difficulty responding to house training, especially if they are former racing dogs. Some, but not all, Greyhounds also have an extremely strong prey drive and as a result, do not get along very well with cats or other small house pets. They are generally very dependent on their owners and show plenty of affection, but some can be timid around strangers if they are not socialized frequently as puppies. This is a bigger problem in racing dogs, but all Greyhounds will appreciate plenty of opportunities to meet new dogs and experience new situations so that they grow up to be friendly and well-adjusted.
Their name is deceptive — they aren't all gray. In fact, Greyhounds are spotted in a wide variety of coat colors and patterns because coat color is not specified in their breed standard. They are most frequently fawn, brindle, black, red, blue, gray or white.
Greyhounds shed their short hair quite a bit, so owners who want to keep a tidy house free of loose Greyhound hairs should brush them daily with a firm rubber bristle brush to remove dead hair and manage shedding. If shedding does not bother you, your Greyhound will only need to be brushed occasionally to keep his coat looking healthy and stimulate hair growth.
With preparation, perseverance and a positive attitude, bathing can become a fun and fulfilling part of the regular grooming cycle, while helping your dog avoid many diseases and infections.
Smooth coated breeds adhere to the general rule of dog bathing: about once every three months. The coat should end up fresh smelling, shiny, with no loose or shedding hair. First give the dog a good brushing to remove dead hair and mats. Place a rubber mat in the tub to provide secure footing and fill the tub with three to four inches of lukewarm water. Use a spray hose, pitcher or unbreakable cup to wet the dog, taking caution to avoid getting water in the eyes, ears and nose. Massage in pet shampoo, saving the head for last. Immediately rinse thoroughly, starting with the head to prevent soap from dripping into the eyes. Towel dry. Wipe wrinkled breeds with a soft cloth and make sure they are totally dry after bathing.
Clipping or trimming your dog’s coat is far easier than you would ever imagine. With the right clipper, trimmer and scissors, giving your dog a haircut is easy on your wallet and your schedule.
Dogs with smooth coats generally only require trims and tidying up in areas of excessive hair growth using a trimmer or blunt scissors. It's always wise to take a dog for a short walk or exercise to calm them down before trimming. Remember to brush the coat first to remove any tangles and mats. Don't forget to trim around the paws, pads, tail, chest and sanitary areas, as needed. The coat should lay flat and smooth against the body when finished.
Many dog owners are apprehensive about trimming their dog’s nails because they are nervous about cutting into the quick. But with the right conditioning and careful cutting, nail clipping can be a simple, stress-free activity for you and your dog.
Provide your dog with plenty of positive reinforcement and even treats to help associate nail clipping with a positive experience. As you start to clip, gently press on your dog’s paws to help him become accustomed to the feeling of having his nails clipped. Then, work gradually, shaving down just a thin portion of the nail at first to make sure you don’t reach the quick. Clip one nail, reward your dog with a treat, and stop to give him some positive reinforcement before moving on. Gradually increase the number of nails you clip in one sitting to help your dog get used to the process. Never trim extremely long nails down to a short nail in one sitting, because this is an excellent way to accidently quick the dog’s nail. Instead, work gradually, shaving small portions of your dog’s nails off each time.
You can tell if you’re getting close to the quick by the texture of your dog’s nail. The nail is hard closer to the surface and becomes softer as you get closer to the quick. If your dog’s nail starts to feel softer, that’s a good indication that you’re getting close to the quick.
Check their floppy ears weekly for infection and loose hair.
Make sure to brush their teeth at least three times a week. They have weak teeth that can lead to poor dental health, so frequent brushing will help prevent discomfort and help their breath stay fresh.