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All about your Greyhound

Faithful and gracious, while never one to shy away from showing love.

The Greyhound is one of the most recognisable breeds of dog for his sleek, slender frame and powerful runs, but his sweet and gentle nature makes him a great domestic pet too. Learn more about this quiet, affectionate dog, from his grooming and exercise needs, to the things you can do to keep him happy and healthy.

Greyhound Walking On The Beach

Breed information & advice

As the name suggests, the Greyhound belongs to the hound group and is the fastest breed around, with one racing dog clocking 45mph. Due to his short, thin coat, it’s important that he lives indoors and he may need a warm dog coat during winter.

  • You might imagine that he’s always on the go but the Greyhound can be just as happy lazing around the house.
  • Regular grooming is important – despite his short coat, he sheds a lot of hair.
  • Typically he will weigh between 23kg and 39kg, when fully grown.
  • A healthy Greyhound will usually live for 12 to 15 years.

Typical size of a Greyhound

Large: 63cm-76cm

Your Greyhound doesn’t need to be zipping around all the time – just give him up to an hour a day of exercise and he’ll be happy with a couple of decent walks . He may need some encouragement to get up off the couch, so make sure he’s regularly active – obesity can be a problem for retired Greyhounds. Socialising him as a puppy is also important to get him used to other dogs, but be patient and consistent as this breed has a sensitive side.

Feed your dog good quality food twice a day – how much will depend on his age, size and activity levels, and always read the packet instructions. Make sure you only leave out the food during feeding time to ward off any potential weight gain.

Up to one hour of exercise per day

An hour a day should be more than enough for your Greyhound – always use a lead as he will have a strong prey instinct.

Greyhound Trots On The Beach
Black And White Greyhound Stood Up And Looking Directly Ahead

Common health problems & illnesses

Greyhounds are generally healthy dogs but they’ll need regular check-ups and vaccinations to stay in good shape. There are some conditions that this breed may be more prone to, and it’s worth being aware of the main symptoms, so you know what to watch out for.

1. Cuts, scrapes and wounds

Because the Greyhound’s thin coat sheds so much, it leaves him less protected from the risk of cuts and scrapes. So if he tends to get excitable at playtime, or even if he’s involved in rough and tumble with other animals, he could pick up a wound that requires attention. And because the Greyhound has extremely thin skin, with very little fatty tissue under the skin, when he gets a wound it tends to be both longer and wider than with other breeds of dog. Keep any cuts clean to avoid the risk of infection.

Wounds accounted for 7% of Tesco Pet Insurance claims in 2015 for this breed.

2. Foot conditions

Unlike most other dogs, Greyhounds can have problems with corns due to the sensitive pads of their feet. As they have very little fat between their foot’s pad and the bone, this condition can cause lameness. Corns are light or dark hardened circular patches, so check your dog’s paws regularly and speak to your vet if you suspect anything. Treatment options can range from ointment and cream, to filing and surgery.

3. Joint problems

Many breeds of dog tend to suffer from degenerative joint disease in later life – a form of arthritis that weakens the joints. It affects the cartilage in the joints and causes both reduced mobility and stiffness, so keep an eye on your Greyhound if you notice any of these signs. Anti-inflammatory drugs can help to reduce swelling, while surgery can also be an option.

4. Tumours

A growth or tumour can indicate a number of potential conditions – some may be benign fatty lumps, while others may be a sign of something more serious. Lymphoma is a type of cancer that attacks the white blood cells in the body, weakening defences. Look out for any swelling around the lymph nodes – such as under the jawbone on either side. Treatment typically involves chemotherapy, but your vet will discuss options with you.

It’s a good idea to regularly check your dog for any lumps or bumps during grooming and if you notice anything unusual, make an appointment so your vet can check it out.

5. Urinary conditions

There are a number of conditions which may affect this breed’s urinary tract. These can range from incontinence due to weakened muscles, to prostate disease, bladder stones or even stress. If you notice your Greyhound is having difficulty passing water or is experiencing incontinence, speak to your vet to discuss the possible causes and treatment.

Dog name popularity

If you’re struggling to think of a name for your Greyhound, take a look at the most popular ones at Tesco Pet Insurance for inspiration.

Dog name popularity
Molly
Poppy
Bella
Jack
Ben

Average treatment costs

Wondering whether pet insurance for your Greyhound is worth it? We’ve put together the top five conditions claimed for by Tesco Pet Insurance customers in 2015, and the average cost of treatment.

ConditionAverage treatment cost
Wound£369.53
Lameness£478.11
Arthritis and degenerative joint disease£195.55
Tumour£428.26
Injury£360.33

Tesco Pet Insurance claims data from paid treatments including excesses from 01/01/15 to 31/12/15.

Considering Greyhound insurance?

We know your dog is an important member of the family, so give them the protection they deserve with Tesco Pet Insurance.

Tesco Bank Pet Insurance is arranged, administered and underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc.

Grooming advice

Because he tends to shed so much, your Greyhound needs to be brushed daily in order to reduce the amount of stray hairs around the house. Daily brushing will also keep his coat looking lustrous.

Unless he has a habit of rolling in particularly mucky stuff, he won’t need to take a bath that often – once every 12 weeks will do the trick. Be sure to use a dog-friendly shampoo that won’t irritate his skin.

Due to his sensitive skin, it’s important to regularly check your Greyhound for cuts and scrapes to eliminate the risk of infection. Also check in and around his ears, and use an approved ear cleaner to keep them clean and fresh. Brush his teeth daily if you can, but at least a few times a week – plaque or tartar build-up is a potential problem for dogs just as it is for humans, and Greyhounds are particularly prone to dental disease. Regular brushing reduces bad breath too.

Fun & interesting facts

  • The Greyhound is one of the oldest known breeds of dog – drawings of him have been found on walls in Ancient Egyptian tombs.
  • His chase instinct is one of the Greyhound’s defining qualities and owners need a solid fence to stop these dogs from taking off after small animals.
  • Their thin skin makes Greyhounds sensitive to the cold – wrap yours up warmly if you’re expecting to spend a long time outside together.
  • Greyhound racing exploded onto the UK scene during the 1920s. At one point, 100,000 people were visiting the White City track every week.
  • Alongside their many royal owners throughout history, famous Greyhound owners –both real and fictional – include JK Rowling and Bart Simpson.

Important information

KEY INFORMATION

The content on this page aims to offer an informative introduction to pet breeds, but does not constitute expert veterinary advice. If your dog or cat falls ill or has an injury, contact your vet immediately. Tesco Bank Pet Insurance has a partnership with vetfone™ which means that as a customer, you can benefit from their advice as part of your policy.

Tesco Bank Pet Insurance is arranged, administered and underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc. The vetfone™ service is provided by Vetsdirect Ltd.

All facts and figures were correct at date of publication and were compiled using a range of sources.

WHAT IS VETFONE?

Vetfone™ is a 24/7 helpline that provides expert advice from nurses qualified with the RCVS (Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons). If your pet has a medical emergency, or you need reassurance on grooming, feeding or general advice, vetfone™ is there to help.

As a Tesco Pet Insurance customer, you can access expert veterinary advice provided by RCVS registered vet nurses as a standard benefit with your policy, and the service is provided at no additional cost. A quick call could answer any questions you have about your pet, give you peace of mind and could even save you an expensive trip to the vet.

Tesco Bank Pet Insurance is arranged, administered and underwritten by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc. The vetfone™ service is provided by Vetsdirect Ltd.

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