Greyhounds--A Common Sense Proposition
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Educating and advocating for the SPORT of Greyhound Racing!
© Copyright 2019 KeepGreyhoundsRacing.org & Dennis McKeon
Yesterday, on Greyhound-related social media, a very nice woman with an overweight greyhound, asked a simple question. Essentially, the question was, “how do I go about taking the weight off him?”
Unfortunately for the poor woman, in less than an hour’s time, she had a veritable encyclopedia of suggestions to read and assimilate. Virtually every imaginable piece of advice, from under our sun, and the suns of several neighboring galaxies, short of feeding the dog finely-ground glass, was offered up for her evaluation. At that point, I thought it may have been easier (and in some cases, cheaper) for her to simply have taken the dog to a clinic for liposuction therapy.
When you live and work with greyhounds for a living, you quickly learn that there are no shortcuts to be taken, there are no magic potions to be administered, and that there is no substitute for good, old-fashioned common sense, if you wish to become a successful handler/trainer of performing greyhounds. It’s all about hard, exhausting work, and being a few IQ points further along the road of least resistance than your greyhounds, or the guy or gal in the kennel next door.
For example, if your performing greyhound is the sort who always finishes the contest with a determined burst of speed, passing tiring greyhounds as if they were railroad ties beneath a bullet train, and then suddenly, she finishes in last place twice in a row, for no discernible reason, never making an effort to pass--you don’t need a “dog communicator”, or a seance to channel the spirit of Madame Blavatsky, to know that something is amiss with her.
Likewise, if your greyhound is a fast trapper, seldom failing to get the initial jump on his rivals, and then for no apparent reason, fails to jump in first flight several times in a row, falling back early, where he would normally be right on the bunny--you probably shouldn’t wait for a carrier pigeon to land on your shoulder bearing a message that reads, “Something is bothering Lightning”.
Greyhounds are seldom as complicated as we sometimes imagine them to be. No doubt, in the case of adopted retirees, many of our perceptions of them have been blurred and distorted out of all reasonable proportion, by the ever-billowing volumes of greyhound dis-information and mythology that exist on social, and in other forms of media.
But if Rover’s torso, waist area and hindquarters are beginning to make him look more like a finless Porpoise with stick legs, than a fit and somewhat well-defined greyhound, then he needs to lose some weight. The way we do that, is by feeding him less and exercising him more--just as we might do for ourselves. There is no need for a pilgrimage to purchase holy water from the fountains of Lourdes, to be sprinkled on his kibble-- or to sacrifice a sack of green beans to the Goddess of the Coffee Enema. Feed less + exercise more = common sense.
Common sense--try it, you’ll probably like it--and so will your greyhound(s). And more times than not, so will your wallet.