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Happy Greyhound 

Whether you’re new to sharing your life with a Greyhound or if you’ve been doing it for years, you’ve probably made plenty of mistakes. A grey is so much more than just a handsome companion: they have a lot of specific needs. Even the most well-intentioned dog owner might be guilty of some of these common mistakes, but it’s never too late to make a change for the better. It’s okay to make mistakes and learn from them as you get to know your dog.

We already know that owning a dog can really add value and joy to one's life, but it requires a certain investment of both money and time; it's a serious commitment. If you pick a wrong dog personality, or neglect some essential aspects of pet care and dog training, that can have a significant impact on your newly adopted Greyhound's health or behavior.

Even long-term dog parents can make changes to benefit their dogs. So, here are 8 of the most common mistakes that many dog lovers make. Are you guilty of any of them?


Of course, dogs are adorable! But they’re so much more than just their looks. I made the mistake once of choosing a Greyhound based on her size and no other considerations. Big mistake! Frequently, someone will only see a dog and fall in love, not considering all the other factors that go into homing them.

Just because a hound is beautiful doesn’t mean that they’re the right fit for you. It’s essential to get to know a dog first before you bring them home. Spend some time with them and try to find out as much as you can before making your decision. Your dog’s personality is much more important than how they look.


Priority number one after getting a new dog should be making sure they can find their way back home if they ever get lost. Over 10 million pets are lost every year and it happens to even the most responsible dog owners! The best way to protect your pup is to get it microchipped. These small chips that are implanted in the folds of the skin in your pup’s shoulders hold a unique ID number that connects with your contact info (i.e. your phone number) that you supply online. It’s not a GPS tracker. Many shelters will offer inexpensive microchips or you can ask your vet about microchipping options.

Microchipping your dog is only half the battle—many owners don’t realize you have to also register the microchip with your name and current contact information for it to work. Make sure your information is current every year.

Our vet uses Home Again Pet Recovery and registers the chip initially for us. Thereafter, we need to keep our contact info updated to be sure our pets can find their way home if the worst happens. Another service is

In addition to microchipping, please keep a tag collar on your Greyhound at all times, with current contact info. They can escape in the blink of an eye and having the tag collar on makes it easy for anyone finding your dog to contact you. You might find this article helpful: Help! My Greyhound Has Escaped!


Introducing a new dog to your existing pets requires planning and patience. Make the first introduction on neutral ground (as in, not your home), keep both dogs leashed at first to maintain control, and have plenty of treats on hand to reinforce good behavior. Most adoption groups check if their hounds are cat safe or small animal safe. Introduce your potential new Greyhound to your other animals before committing to adopt. The extra effort is worth it.


Dogs enjoy learning new things and being rewarded for their actions. However, it’s difficult for them to behave if they don’t have specific rules to follow. Many Greyhound parents fail to set up clear expectations for their dog, or they wait too long to do it. Behavior problems in dogs may start small, but most will get worse. Ignoring the issues will let them fester and grow. Worse, you might unconsciously reinforce bad behavior in your dog. Giving a treat to an aggressive dog tells that dog that it is doing the right thing.

If you live with other people, it’s essential to make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to expectations for your dog. If rules are not consistent, dogs become confused and that makes it harder for them to behave as expected. So, make sure every family member clearly understands what the rules for the dog are from the start. Check out this post for helpful tips: 10 Easy Steps to Help Your New Dog Adapt . 

Don’t let unwanted behaviors get out of control. Many dog parents are guilty of letting their dog get away with too many things. Some are scared to punish their dogs, while others are too lazy to correct their behavior. Either way, you need to address their behavioral issues as soon as possible before they become a bad habit. You can’t just assume that bad behavior will cure itself. Excessive barking, jumping, or whining are actions that you’ll likely want to fix before it gets out of hand.

Fear and phobias are also sometimes overlooked or minimized. Phobias tend to get worse over time and can lead to other behavior problems or even health issues. Behavior modification, not punishment, can help to address these issues.

Don't let these issues continue. When issues are just starting, you may be able to address them quickly. Sometimes the solution is in a book or on a website (just be sure it's a trusted source; ask your vet and do your research). If problems escalate, find a professional to help your dog before it gets out of control.


It’s so hard to say no to a begging dog, but sometimes we have to. Letting him eat human food is a risky endeavor. While most fruits and veggies are good for dogs, many aren’t. The biggest no-nos are grapes, macadamia nuts, chocolate and onions. These other common “people” foods are also toxic for dogs.

Try to ignore those puppy dog eyes! Many dog parents go overboard with treats and table scraps. Do not bribe your dogs with food. Some pet owners assume that dog food and love are the same thing, but doggy treats aren't the only way to reward your pooch, and you shouldn't over feed him. Also, like dog food, not all dog treats and chews are equal. Some might have unhealthy ingredients, while others could be hard for your dog to digest. So, consider this when choosing the perfect snacks as well.

It’s OK to switch their food. Many dog owners don’t want to make a diet change for their dog because they’ve been serving the same food forever. However, it’s okay to switch your dog’s food from time to time. If you choose to switch to healthier food, make sure you slowly transition to it. Start by mixing the two foods instead of just giving your dog the new food immediately. This can help prevent your dog from getting an upset stomach.

While homemade dog food can be very healthy, home-cooked diets that aren't correctly balanced for nutrition can do more harm than good. Same applies to raw food diets – when done right, they're great; when it's done wrong, it can be dangerous to both dogs and their owners. Dogs need a healthy, well-balanced diet and lifestyle. It's up to the owner to research safety of pet food preparation, control portions and make sure the dog gets enough exercise to burn off those extra calories consumed. If you want to feed your dog a homemade diet, you can check with your veterinarian to be sure you are supplementing with everything necessary for a complete and balanced diet.


Veterinarian appointments can be expensive, which is why many dog parents delay them or avoid them as much as possible. However, vets are there to help your dog and to answer any health-related questions you might have. So, it’s crucial that your dog’s health is always a priority. You may think, "my dog is healthy and feeling great, why should I stress him out with a vet visit?" What should you do if you dog is afraid of the vet’s office? Dog owners often want to avoid the cost and inconvenience of a vet visit. 

Reality check: This is not the best way to treat your dog. Your veterinarian is a key part of keeping your dog healthy. Most dogs will hide illness until it becomes unbearable, and then it might be too late. Routine wellness exams can allow vets to detect small health issues before they become big problems. When your dog is showing signs that something is not right, don't wait for it to get worse. Contact your vet for advice before it becomes something serious.

Greyhound at vet

Having regular checkups for your dog not only helps you keep up with their overall health, but it’s an excellent opportunity to keep up on other health aspects too. You can use vet visits to stay up to date on their vaccinations and make sure they have enough heartworm and flea medicine. Routine dental checks are especially important for Greyhounds, who tend to have poor dental health. These little things could protect your dog from serious health problems in the future.


Dog ownership costs money, beyond the initial adoption fee. Sometimes it's a lot of money. Make sure your budget includes all of the routine costs associated with dog ownership, such as food, dog supplies, and veterinary care. Don't forget extras, such as the need to take a training class or the cost to hire a pet sitter when you travel. If money is tight, you can find ways to save money on dog expenses, but you still need a budget.

Next, allow for the unexpected. Are you ready in case of an emergency or unexpected injury/illness? Emergency vets cost a lot more than your regular vet, but that's how they can be open at 3 a.m. Even regular vets have to charge a lot for their time in working with medical emergencies and serious medical treatments. To stay in business, veterinary offices need payment at the time of services. Therefore, it's important to have the funds or some kind of plan in place in case you need sudden veterinary care. Here are some ideas for financing a big vet bill.

Pet health insurance might be an option for you: check out this article "Pet Health Insurance ABCs".  


Yes, we know that Greyhounds are 45-mph couch potatoes, but they do need regular exercise. Get outdoors to get fit with your fur baby. If you don’t want to put your dog at risk of disease, you’ve got to keep her active. So, make it fun and get busy with your furry bestie. Go for a hike together. Hiking with Your Greyhound.      If you’re not afraid of a little water, try paddle boarding or just a trip to the doggy beach. Taking Your Greyhound to the Beach.

Greyhound at beach

Even if the weather outside is frightful or you don’t have the time to take your pup for an extensive walk, your dog still needs exercise. Luckily, you can work him out indoors. If you have a treadmill at home (yes, yours), your dog can also be trained to use it. You can also play games with your dog inside and even set up indoor obstacle courses to keep their mind and body occupied. They can have fun and exercise at the same time. See also Keep Your Greyhound Busy While You're at Work .


Everyone makes mistakes, but it’s important for dog parents to learn from them and become better for their dogs. To keep your dog happy and healthy, you need to make sure you have plenty of time for them. Always make sure to take their health and happiness very seriously to give them the best life possible. Even the little things in their life can make a huge difference, so try to avoid these simple problems. Our dogs would do the same for us, so make sure always to do what’s best for them.


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