Posted : 7/22/2010 12:43:50 PM
First of all, congratulations on adopting a rescue greyhound! I have had four rescued greyhounds of my own over the past 8 years, and have three right now. They are the most wonderful dogs. I will forever have greyhounds taking all the space on my sofa!
It almost sounds like he isn't ready to end the walk yet since he slows down close to home! But you will have to be the one who decides what they can tolerate. THEY may still want to keep going, but if it's hot or you have already walked a long way, they will need to take a break, cool off, and get a drink of water.
One thing to remember though, is that racing greyhounds live in small crates and are only let out for 3-4 times a day for a few minutes each time and race maybe once or twice a week. This insures that they have no endurance (and makes them couch potatoes!). They are sprinters, not endurance runners. No one has ever "walked" them before, except from the kennel to the track. You will have to acclimate them to longer walks. Another thing is that they don't have enough body fat to assimilate extreme heat or cold and can get overheated very quickly. Heat and humidity is more dangerous than cold for most greyhounds. I worked my guys up to being able to do 2-3 miles a day, but always in pleasant weather. In the heat we are having now, I don't even take mine out for walks unless it is very, very early in the morning or at dusk. It's just too hot. They go out in the back yard, do their business, and come right back inside to their couches and air conditioning! They are really quite lazy in the summer months!
Secondly, if greyhounds are nervous or unsure about their surroundings, they will sometimes freeze up. What I used to do with one of my spooky greyhounds was when he froze up, instead of trying to get him going again in the same direction, I turned him in the opposite direction and walked him in a circle, and that seemed to get him going a lot quicker than trying to pull him in the direction I wanted to go. I also made sure that I thought "positive" and walked with authority, like I thought everyone would just follow me no matter what... that helps many times as well.
Pulling on the leash doesn't work with greyhounds, it can damage their necks and it risks them slipping their collar altogether, which you never want to happen.
Be patient with him and good luck... he will give you years of loving companionship and unconditional love.
Cyndi, Sweetie Pie, Joe and Dodd