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  • Greyhound in Great Britain
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  • Greyhounds
Exercise Level:
Barking Level:
Good with Children:
Good with other pets:
Height: 71 - 79cm M | 68 - 71cm F
Weight: 29 - 38kg M | 22 - 29kg F
Life Expectancy: 10 - 13 Years

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The Greyhound, also called the English Greyhound, is believed to have come from Saluki or Persian Greyhound found in Ancient Egypt, but scientific evidence proves otherwise. An intelligent and athletic breed, he boasts of above-average hunting and racing skills.

As family companions, Greyhounds are very affectionate and amiable to their loved ones. The strong bond these large hound dogs share with their family makes them prone to developing separation anxiety.

Therefore, Greyhounds needs at least one companion throughout the day to prevent boredom and loneliness.

The Greyhound breed is an easy dog to groom thanks to his short coat. However, since he has sensitive skin, he cannot tolerate gluten.

This large hound dog can do fine in an apartment as long as there is access to a fenced yard. He may have high exercise needs, but he loves lazing around the house. The breed has a lifespan of 10–13 years.

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The Greyhound breed’s origin has always been linked to Ancient Egypt as depicted in drawings found in tombs dating back to 4000 BC. However, there has been no scientific basis for this claim.

DNA results in 2004 suggest that this large hound dog breed may not be related to the Saluki or Persian Greyhound found in Egypt, although they may look similar.

Greyhounds arrived in Europe during the Dark Ages. They garnered great respect for being remarkable sighthounds that went after large games like wolves, deer, and antelopes.

Since royal game reserves were protected at that time, laws prohibited people living within ten miles of the king's forests from owning Greyhounds. Only nobles and the elite were allowed to own this large hound in 1016.

The Greyhound dog breed then rose to popularity in England as he was used for hare coursing and then later on for racing. They are dubbed as the fastest dogs and the second-fastest animals in the world, only next to the cheetah.

This swift-footed Greyhound breed now remains a popular choice as a pet companion because of his gentle nature and patience around kids.

The Greyhound dog breed is registered with top breed clubs like the Kennel Club in the UK and the American Kennel Club in the United States under their respective Hound Groups.

How fast can a Greyhound run?

The Greyhound breed can run 30–45 miles per hour. His swiftness in running is attributed to his long legs and light, aerodynamically shaped body. They also have larger hearts than most dogs. This greatly helps in keeping them from easily tiring out.

Is Greyhound racing cruel?

Greyhound racing is a controversial sport. Many animal advocates and organisations are calling for its dissolution due to several reports of racing Greyhounds sustaining injuries or dying on the track.

To prevent accidents and fatalities from increasing, the government along with the Greyhound Board of Great Britain are working together to enforce rules that will protect the welfare of racing Greyhounds. The rules cover stringent requirements for racing Greyhound licencing, healthcare, kennel security, training, and record-keeping.

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Appearance and Grooming

The Greyhound dog breed is an athletic and lean yet muscular canine. Do not confuse him with another sighthound called the Italian Greyhound, which is a lot smaller and has a different body build.

Full-grown male Greyhounds weigh around 29–38 kilos (65–85 pounds) and measure 71–79 centimetres (28–30 inches) tall.

Adult female Greyhounds have a weight of approximately 22–29 kilos (50–65 pounds) and a height of around 68–71 centimetres (27–28 inches).

This strongly built large hound dog breed has a long head, strong neck, deep chest, and spacious body. He has intelligent-looking, oval eyes, rose-shaped ears, and a powerful jaw.

Built for speed and performance, the Greyhound has arched loins, powerful hindquarters, and agile limbs that allow him to cover huge distances at very high speeds.

The Greyhound is a smooth-coated breed. According to the Kennel Club, the acceptable colours are white, black, red, blue, fawn, brindle, and fallow, or any of these colours broken with white.

Grooming the Greyhound dog breed entails cleaning his ears weekly to make sure that they’re free from debris. His nails should be trimmed once a week. Acclimatising your dog to nail clipping will make the experience pleasant and lessen costs at the vet or groomer.

As Greyhounds are prone to dental issues, their teeth should be brushed with a vet-approved toothpaste at least twice a week. Chew bones and dental treats will also help in removing tartar build-up.

Do Greyhounds shed?

Yes, Greyhounds shed, but only lightly due to their fine, close-lying coat. They are easy-to-groom dogs that require daily brushing. Use a rubber brush to comb through their fur and get rid of loose and dead hair.

Bathing the Greyhound can be done as needed, Dry dog shampoo will keep his coat sleek and healthy.

Are Greyhounds hypoallergenic?

No, Greyhounds are not hypoallergenic dogs despite their fine and low-shedding coats. They are not the best choice for people with allergies.

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Temperament and Intelligence

The Greyhound dog breed is good with children. He is friendly and patient with kids, and would rather walk away than snap at an unruly child. However, as a large hound dog that could accidentally run over a toddler, their interactions need to be supervised.

Greyhounds can do well with other dogs, but smaller pets should be avoided altogether because of their high, strong prey drive. Even a well-behaved one could not resist small animals he believes he should chase.

The Greyhound breed is very intelligent and can be a great option for first-time owners because he is a people-pleaser. He is also highly trainable and would eagerly learn new tricks.

Since Greyhounds are sensitive by nature, they do not respond to harsh training. They would do well with gentle words and praises.

Are Greyhounds good pets?

Yes, Greyhounds are good pets as they are gentle, affectionate, and loyal. These large hound dogs develop a strong bond with their owners.

Unfortunately, this means that Greyhounds tend to suffer from separation anxiety even when left for a short time. Thus, they need owners who can spend time with them most of the day.

Do Greyhounds like to cuddle?

Yes, Greyhounds do love cuddles as they are affectionate family pets. However, some may not be fond of cuddles and that's okay. You can teach your dog to love cuddle time through positive reinforcement.

Are Greyhounds aggressive?

No, Greyhounds are not aggressive dogs. They are easy-going and friendly whenever around people if properly socialised.

Greyhounds are not aggressive towards strangers, but they would calmly bark to alert their owners when they sense a presence. They also tend to be timid towards guests, but they will warm up when they detect no harm.

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Nutrition and Feeding

Adult greyhounds should have 2.5–4 cups of excellent-quality dry dog food per day, depending on their age, size, build, activity level, and metabolism.

There are guidelines for breeds when it comes to serving size and meal timing, but your dog has distinctive needs. At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide whichever you find fitting.

These are the typical calorie needs of a 36-kilo (80-pound) adult Greyhound per day:

  • Senior and less active: up to 1,600 calories daily
  • Typical adult: up to 1,700 calories daily
  • Physically active/working dog: up to 2,200 calories daily

In choosing your Greyhound’s food, opt for high-quality brands that are suitable for active large dog breeds. He thrives on protein, specifically on animal meat (chicken, turkey, lamb, and beef), and should consume around 250–300 grams of meat per day.

Because the Greyhound dog breed has sensitive skin, avoid gluten and include omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in his diet. To promote bone and joint health, food should contain calcium, glucosamine, and chondroitin.

As the Greyhound breed is prone to bloating, it is wise to avoid feeding them before any physical activity.

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Health and Exercise

The Greyhound dog breed has several health problems that potential dog owners should know. Below are some of the health issues that are prevalent in this breed:

Drug Sensitivity

Lean-bodied dog breeds such as the Greyhound are naturally slow in metabolising certain drugs. Drug sensitivity can cause severe adverse effects including blindness, poor muscle control, and seizures.

Dog Bloat

This is a fatal condition common in large dog breeds such as the Greyhound, as it causes the stomach to twist. Dogs that are suffering from bloat should be sent to a vet clinic or a hospital immediately. Delayed treatment can result in death.


This is a painful bone tumour that is often found in the bones of the ribcage, skull, or spine. Affected Greyhounds may need to be amputated to get rid of the tumour.

Greyhounds may be known as high-energy dogs, but they are actually couch potatoes. They love lounging around the house and sleeping. The breed will do fine in apartments as long as there is access to a fenced yard where he can play freely.

As Greyhounds are large dogs that are bred as sighthounds, their exercise needs are high. They need at least 60 minutes of exercise.

Physical activities for the Greyhound should be spread throughout the day, starting with a short walk in the morning, a longer one in the afternoon, and free time in the yard. Make sure to have a high and sturdy fence to avoid these dogs from escaping whilst chasing a small animal.

A well-trained Greyhound will make a great jogging partner.

How long do Greyhounds live?

The Greyhound dog breed is generally healthy and can live up to 10–13 years. Some can even reach the age of 15.

To ensure that your Greyhound lives a long life, his basic daily needs should be met. Give him healthy and balanced meals, a stress-free and loving home, and rigorous exercise every day. Do not forget to take him to the vet regularly for routine check-ups.

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Cost of Ownership

If you are keen on raising a Greyhound, the initial cost of a well-bred pedigree puppy would be £400–£700.

Find a reputable breeder that breeds Greyhounds that are healthy and have good temperaments. You can also get recommendations or referrals from people who engage their dogs in dog shows.

You may also be interested in visiting some Greyhound rescue groups that shelter retired racing Greyhounds for adoption.

To ensure that your dog stays healthy, you would have to feed him with high-quality food, which can set you back £30–£40 a month.

You also need to factor in the initial cost for dog accessories and equipment such as food bowls, lead, collar, and beds. These will likely cost around £100–£400 depending on the brand.

Caring for a dog also involves keeping him healthy and free from diseases. You may need to spend around £50–£60 for every vet check-ups.

Expenses for initial vaccinations are around £100–150, whist the annual booster costs £50–£60. Getting your dog spayed or neutered will cost you about £110–£390.

Acquiring pet insurance is a good way to reduce your puppy's vet bill. A time-limited package will require you to pay a monthly fee of a

Greyhound Breed Highlights

  • The Greyhound dog breed is affectionate and loyal, but he tends to have separation anxiety.
  • They are highly intelligent dogs that are responsive to training.
  • As this breed was bred as a sighthound, he has a strong prey drive.
  • The breed’s coat is easy to maintain, but he has very sensitive skin.
  • They are prone to certain health conditions such as bloat and drug sensitivity.

Are you sure the Greyhound is the best breed for you? Take the Pet Breed Selector Quiz to find your perfect breed match.

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The information, including measurements, prices and other estimates, on this page is provided for general reference purposes only.

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