April is Adopt a Greyhound Month, so The Courier is profiling South Canterbury greyhounds and their human families to find out what is so special about the breed.
Ricky and Sandy Lewis own greyhounds Paddy Pie and Loki Licious.
In the Lewis house live Ricky and Sandy – an eccentric middle-aged couple – with our beautiful greyhound boys Paddy Pie and Loki Licious and Sid Vicious, our little feral miniature poodle.
Ricky is a freezing worker and I (Sandy) am a stay-at-home CEO of our wee home.
Our journey into the wonderful life of living with greyhounds came about by being in the right place at the right time.
We decided to add another “fur-baby” to our family and we were thinking of getting a puppy – we just weren’t sure what. We were at the dog park one morning with Sid, when a young family arrived with a gorgeous greyhound. He was absolutely charming and our decision to adopt our own was made.
Friends of ours had adopted and, as luck had it, were hosting a training day for local greyhounds with dog trainer Kerry Hurst. We went along to watch and loved the wonderful quirky nature of all the hounds that were there, so we went straight home and applied for adoption that very same day.
It didn’t take long for us to have our meet-and-greet with 4-year-old Paddy Pie and the moment I saw him I knew he would be coming home with us.
He is everything we could have hoped for and more; he is an absolute gentleman, and can be a very stoic boy who loves lots of cuddles and pats. If you get a bit lazy in the patting department he will come and push your hand on to his head to remind you what part of your daily job is.
He loves morning stretches then a good run around before breakfast, then it’s sleep time again. As with all greyhounds he loves his sleep. I would say he would sleep more than 20 hours a day but for those other four hours he is a delightfully quirky boy – in my eyes he is perfect.
In fact so perfect how could we not adopt another? So a year after we adopted Paddy Pie we adopted the delicious Loki Licious. He is only 20 months old so still very much a pup. We got Loki knowing he had suffered spinal injuries but he was so delightful we knew we could help him so he could have his best life. Two months down the track and through the amazing treatment he has received from his chiropractor and his aqua-motion therapist, he is thriving and running and jumping and getting stronger every day.
The thing with greyhounds is they are a lot like chocolate and tattoos – it’s very hard to stop at one, in fact they become an addiction of the very best sort.
They are all quirky with their own unique personalities and character. They are just big, loving, cuddly, loyal, hilarious goofy dorks want or need that in their lives.
Some things that I have learnt is that two big male greyhounds and one feral mini poodle do in fact fit in the back of a Suzuki Swift Sport quite comfortably.
They also have an unusual addiction to soft toys – in fact there is no such thing as too many in their minds.
But for me the most surprising thing I have learnt is just how incredibly intelligent this breed is – both our boys have amazed us with how clever they are.
So if there is anyone who is thinking of adopting a dog and your requirements are for a loving, cuddly, loyal, funny, quirky, unique one-of-a-kind intelligent companion, I highly recommend a greyhound. They are simply life changing.
Love at first sight: greyhounds one of the easiest breeds to own
Greg and Anna Clarkson share their home with a menagerie of birds, cats and dogs, which includes their adopted greyhound, Callie.
We are a household of two adults and one teenager. As well as Callie the greyhound, we have a Jack Russell, a Maltese-Bichon cross, two cats, and three budgies. We both work full time and the teen is at high school but I am working mostly at home at the moment due to Covid.
I had been looking at the dogs on the GAP (Greyhounds As Pets) website through the first Covid lockdown in 2020.
After lockdown, we met a lady with a greyhound when we were in Geraldine for the day and I was immediately drawn to how gorgeous the dog was. We joined in on a hound walk in Lyttelton a few weeks later, asked a million questions, patted many, many dogs and Greg (hubby) fell in love with the breed too so we applied to adopt a hound.
A week or two later GAP contacted us to say they had a dog for us and Callie entered our lives.
We adopted Callie at 20 months old, unraced. She is now 3 and a-half. She was very quiet and shy when we got her and timid around other dogs but now she is a bundle of energy. She loves people! She enjoys zoomies in the backyard and, if she can get away with it, in the house too between the couches.
In between walks and energy bursts she will just sleep all the time, night times in her crate but when we are at home she sleeps on the couch or the spare bed in the office. She rearranges the couch cushions to suit her better and makes a nest with the blankets on the bed.
Callie is a creature of habit – likes her walks at the same time each day and also walking the same blocks too, and dinner at the same time. She is very food oriented – loves treats, and she enjoys ripping apart squeaky and stuffed toys, and ripping newspapers and cardboard.
She can be quite stubborn but is an absolute goon and her facial expression always make us laugh. She only ever barks if she wants to go out, or has been left out, or if the cat is in her way.
If she wants attention she will put her paws on your lap and do this whiny thing in your face. She’s not a fan of the rain or when it’s really windy but is actually fine with thunder and loud noises.
Greyhounds don’t need hours of daily exercise and are really just big lapdogs. They are very affectionate, loyal and extremely gentle.
Greyhounds make great pets. We have owned a lot of different breeds and I would say the greyhound is one of the easiest. They learn very quickly and will reward you with so much love and affection. They suit any kind of family situation, young or old. You won’t regret adopting.