The Greyhound is the fastest dog in the world, capable of reaching speeds of over forty miles per hour. They are sighthounds, hunting by sight scanning for movement rather than following a scent.
Everything about the Greyhound is long and slender. They have slender bodies with deep chests, a long narrow head, long legs and even a long, thin tail. Their coat is short and fine and comes in all colours. There are two types of Greyhound - show dogs and racing dogs. The show dogs are taller, heavier and not as fast.
With greyhound type dogs appearing in hieroglyphics it is believed they may have come originally from Egypt. Greyhounds are the only breed mentioned in the Bible. Hundreds of years ago, they were used in England to hunt wild boar, deer and foxes, but over more recent years have been used for racing.
They are a gentle, quiet, affectionate breed but can be very sensitive. They can be reserved around strangers and would not welcome rough play from children. Many can be taught to live happily with other animals but a strong urge to chase combined with the speed to catch what they are chasing means they must be managed responsibly. Built for speed they are very much couch potatoes indoors and enjoy regular short exercise opportunities (two 20 minute walks each day is usually recommended depending on the needs of individual dogs). Lead walking is great to tone their muscles and a secure area where they can let off short bursts of speed can be particularly enjoyed. They will need a coat in winter.
The short hair is easy to maintain. They have a unique physiology to enable them to reach their high speeds including a proportionately larger heart compared to other breeds, and a greater proportion of red blood cells within their blood. They are prone to bloat and hypothyroidism and can also be sensitive to drugs including insecticides.
Watch our videos about some of the dog breeds in the Hound group