About 25,000 greyhounds are retired from racing every year. Of these dogs, many end up being put in rescue or adopted out. While the thought of adopting a race dog may give you the impression that these are high-energy dogs, the opposite is actually truer. Greyhounds do like to sprint, but once they are retired from the racecourse they turn into almost ideal housedogs. They love to lie around on the couch and enjoy a calm and quiet atmosphere.
Some of the advantages of adopting a greyhound race dog are that they are already fully grown. Most are already crate-trained, but even if not, they can learn to be house-trained just as easily as a puppy. Since greyhounds vary in temperament widely and it changes as the puppy grows, you can observe an adult greyhound and know that the temperament they are displaying won't change later. What you see is what you get.
Greyhound race dogs are genetically bred to be very low maintenance and quite healthy dogs. Even though large dogs can have some problem with bloat, hereditary diseases and barking are often bred out of racing dogs. The big dogs often have hip dysplasia, but this isn't true of greyhounds as much. Most greyhounds are retired by the age of four, and that leaves many more years for them to be a part of your family. A greyhound dog can even live up to twelve years or more. This is quite a long time for a large dog!
If you are looking to adopt a greyhound, then check with one of the numerous adoption agencies around the country. You will be asked to fill out and application and may even be requested to give a small donation to the agency. Considering the fact that most agencies take care of the dog's shots and medical care before you adopt, the fee is a bargain.
When you get a greyhound home, it will need to be socialized into the family. While ex-race dogs are quite familiar with being handled by people and around many strangers, it will still take a period of adjustment for the greyhound to make your house its home. You will want to keep the dog on a lead or behind a tall fence at all times. If not, they will chase things like your neighbor's cat or stray squirrels and wander away.
Greyhound race dogs that have retired are wonderful companions for a home. They make an ideal low-maintenance dog. They have a short coat and it is easily kept clean. They do shed, but not as much as a longhaired dog. They are quiet and won't upset the neighbors much as they are naturally timid. They do like to be a part of the family and love to take a spot on your couch too.