What to expect on your greyhound’s first day at home

Your greyhound’s first day at home is an exciting but daunting one. Don’t worry, you’re not alone! We’ve all been here. Here are some of our top tips for making sure your new best friend settles in as best they can.

  1. Get your food and water bowls at the ready, it’s up to you if you prefer raised or on the floor.
  2. Decide where your greyhound will sleep – preferably give them a safe quiet space away from the hustle and bustle if possible, a quiet corner is enough for them to retreat to for a snooze or a break from this new ‘kennel’ they have arrived in.
  3. Decide on house rules, such as are they allowed on the furniture, can they go upstairs etc? It’s harder to be firm when they are looking at you lovingly….
  4. Toilet training, decide where and a phrase, it is best to take them very frequently the first couple of days for their toileting and always praise them once they have toileted so they understand where to go, going frequently means accidents are less likely and you both understand each other a bit quicker.
  5. They will follow you about, you’re their new person and suddenly they aren’t in kennels any more, try not to always fuss them when they follow you or they will become reliant on you and it will make training them to be left alone much harder as hard as it sounds!
  6. Decide your routine, when you want to feed and walk is up to you – its day one of a new life for all of you and it’s your home so you can make the rules!
  7. Be prepared for some greyhound investigations…. They are tall dogs and a perfect height for checking out food on tables/counters, their tails if they wag can catch items lower down and if excited can thump you in the shin so watch out!  Sometimes they find bins interesting along with fluffy slippers and socks – remember its all new to them…
  8. Don’t forget to get your ID tag for your greyhound – legally they need to wear one and it’s always best to have one in case they get loose, their microchip will be registered to you but it can take a little while to transfer over.
  9. Get them used to your life, take them where you might want to go sooner rather than later – the quicker they get exposed to your lifestyle the quicker they will get used to it.
  10. Start separation training from the first week even if you are at home all the time there may be times you need to leave them alone, some of us are still working from home and you need to be prepared in case you have to go back.  It is better to start with 5-10 minutes a day and build up adding a few minutes a week so it is a positive experience for them rather than suddenly leaving them for 2 hours and they get worried.  When you leave them, try to make as little fuss as possible and the same for your return, wait until the excitement is over before greeting your greyhound.
  11. If you are going to allow them upstairs you might need to show them how it’s done.  Lots of greyhounds have never seen stairs before – some fly up and down straight away, some take a little longer to master the stairs, but always be present when they are going up and downstairs in case of any accidents.
  12. Choose a vet and register your new Greyhound with them, always best to do it as soon as possible just in case you need them (although we hope you don’t)
  13. They might be unsettled at night at first but again they are just getting used to being on their own in a home. Sometimes leaving the radio on quietly or a table lamp can help them settle in and make them feel like they are not alone.
  14. They may pant or pace as it is an exciting day, sometimes they can act like they are very hungry and bolt their food down (its good to give it in 2 or 3 smaller portions one after another) or some may not want to eat, you can soak their food to encourage them to eat.
  15. Last but not least ENJOY IT! You now have a new 4 legged companion and as the weeks and month progress their characters will shine and you will have forgotten what it was like BG (before greyhound).  Remember if you have any questions about your greyhound please get in touch and we’ll support you.
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