Update from Bella (Know Tears)

Saturday, July 30, 2011

We just got an update from Bella (Know Tears) who has been living in in Invercargill for four weeks now.

Bella wrote:
This is fun and I am loving all the attention!  And according to Mum, have not put a paw wrong.

I also have been given a big soft bed that I LOVE!!!! I go for a walk each day which is exciting and I have small people who come to play and have sleepovers. Check out my photos!

Update from Kareem (now Floyd)

Thursday, July 28, 2011
Cute Kareem was fostered by Jacqui, Jolie and family, before going to live with Jody and Colin, their two children and the whole managerie of other animals: chihuahuas, cats, goats, pet pig, chickens and some rats :)
Kareem is now called Floyd and he is enjoying his new life in Hamilton :) Jody just sent us the cutest picture of Floyd with his new friends - check it out (you can click on the photo to see a full size):

In the photo we have Fergus and his cat "Mongoose", Mikayla and her goat "Billy", Bayden and his dog "Stanley", Jody and another goat "Gruff" "Spring & Rory" more dogs, Colin and "Floyd" the greyhound, Caleb and his dog "Topaz" and in front "Buddy" the pig and 2 chickens.
Missing from the photo is 4 more chickens, 2 more pigs, 1 rat, 3 more cats and 5 more chihuahua's.

Picture of the day - snow!!

Monday, July 25, 2011
Ashley took her six racing greyhounds out to see the snow this morning! Picture taken in Cantenbury -thanks a million for sharing Ashley!

Pictures of the day: Beryl and her brother Frankie enjoying the sunshine :)

Thursday, July 21, 2011
Finally, we got some sun in the Manawatu and Beryl (Winsome Deluxe) and her brother Frankie made the best of it ! Aren't they cute? :)

Beryl's Mum Sue has more cute photos on her blog, Greyhounds CAN Sit. Do check it out :)

Priceless (Fancy Freda) and Blondie (Fancy Kate) update

Monday, July 18, 2011
Two gorgeous girls :)
Rebecca, Freda's and Blondie's Mum, sent me an update and some  photos of her two pretty girls :) I have written about these two before, right after Blondie joined their family (link is here. )
Rebecca wrote:

We’ve now had Priceless nearly six months and Blondie nearly three but it feels like they have always been with us.
We took the girls to stay with our friends Clare and Matt ( and their greyhounds Jerry and Zing) a few weeks ago, calling in at Sanson to say hello to Sonja and Irene. Went for a run at the beach and then took all the hounds to the dog park at Mana the next day. Blondie was completely embarrassing and climbed into bed with Matt in the morning; she has no fear of anything and is lucky she is so cute that she gets away with it!

In the same car, on the way to Mana dog park – Clare took the above pic – too cute!!
Priceless and Blondie at the front and Zing and Jez in the rear.
We all took part in a sausage sizzle fundraiser at Carterton New World. Priceless was much more confident with strangers, actually going to them for pats and was happy to hang out with Sally (the Wairarapa Coordinator) for a time which was great to see.
Sally and Christine with Priceless, Gypsy and Rosie
Blondie focused on winning people over with a “sit for sausage” tactic, that worked a treat and she definitely left with some fans. She was also very well behaved, she is quite an exuberant greyhound and I had visions of her stealing sausages from unsuspecting children! But she exceeded my expectations with her behaviour and hung out with Bronwyn for most of the time while dad (Tristan) was cooking sausages and I was rattling the tin for donations.
Blondie making friends while being looked after by Bronwyn
Blondie and Priceless now appear to be firm friends; Priceless is the boss (I think) and often looks like she’s rolling her eyes at Blondie’s antics.
Blondie has stopped stealing things (clothes and shoes) and is settling into the pet malarkey very well, she’s also got Priceless into playing with squeaky toys. Something she wasn’t into before Blondie joined our pack.
Playing with the squeaky duck
Some of the boundaries we set when we got Priceless have lapsed, being allowed on the couch and in our bedroom to name a couple. But they are not allowed in the kitchen and respect this well. I snapped the below pic while Tristan was making their dinner, the boundary is where the carpet meets the tiles and they wedge their paws against the tiles and peer in to see what’s going on!

We went to visit Bronwyn, her greyhound Speedy and family for a run around and Speedy’s birthday a couple of weeks ago which was great fun, the hounds bounded around and celebrated with cheerio’s, while the people had coffee and sausage rolls. Speedy and Blondie are going to obedience classes soon which will be fun! I have come to the conclusion, and I am not alone, that greyhounds are collectible. I want more, unfortunately we don’t have the room for anymore at the moment, but give me time!!

Update from Cleo :)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Cute little Cleo lives in Lower Hutt with Anna and Dave, their 3 kids and two cats. I just got an update from her new family:

Our Cleo is beautifully behaved, and adores the kids, especially when they drop food on the floor. :)

She loves running along the Hutt river trail and is forever seeking out dogs to race with (show off to) and starts grinning and bouncing whenever she sees her lead. She loves the rugby field at the end of our street for a quick sprint as well and her best friend is a toy rabbit!
We love taking her out because we’re always getting stopped to talk about her. She is a dog to be proud of. Everyone she meets comments on her colour and nature and she gets swamped at school pick-up time. We’re loving having her as part of our family.

Pictures of the day: Romeo (Arctic Romeo)

Thursday, July 14, 2011
Weather has been awful in Manawatu and our doggies have not had a proper run for days :( Our garden is flooded too -as is most of the park ...
I just received some lovely pictures of Romeo (Arctic Romeo) having fun in his (relatively dry) garden, so I cannot resist posting them here:
Romeo doing his mad dog run around the shed and washing line...
...and taking a breather before deciding if he should go again :)

Our greyhounds take part in 'Canine Good Citizen Demo' in Palmerston North

Last night our Dog Club organized a CGC (Canine Good Citizen ) Demo in Palmerston North. The event was organized specifically for international exchange students and their host families. A wonderful evening  -probably 400 present and we reckon 30 languages being spoken!

Louie, Lucy, and our foster boys Rusty and Snowy were of course the stars :)
I forgot my camera :( but here are two official pictures we were just sent :

Louie (second from left) , handled by a volunteer, and
Lucy (right), handled by Rachel (click on the picture to see it in full size)
Our gorgeous foster boy Rusty (Classy Fort)
loved the attention and charmed everyone :)
Lucy The Ferret and Rachel :)

Update on Darcy (Quick Knock)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Darcy with his Mum and brother Kite :)
Handsome Darcy (Quick Knock) was adopted by Leigh and family in March. We just got an update and pictures :)
Leigh wrote:
Darcy isn’t a confident greyhound, in fact he’s shy, timid and a worrier. But he is getting much better and has bonded really well with me and Rob, and even our old cantankerous Shiba Inu Kite tolerates him.

Darcy loves his soft sac, sleeping by the heater, eating, and going for walks along the beach. He isn’t keen on seagulls or oyster catches, and would love to chase motorcycles given half the chance. :)

In the couple of months we’ve had him, he’s conquered stairs, floor to ceiling windows in the lounge, and the vacuum cleaner. He loves going out in the car, and enjoys his free gallops at the park around the corner. We had a few issues with toileting, but a gate at the bottom of the stairs stops him going upstairs to pee or investigate the cat’s food and rubbish bin, and now he’s 100% clean inside the house.
Sonja and Irene have been great support, and have helped me specifically be more confident with him and to show him who is boss, and in the last couple of weeks things have improved in leaps and bounds.
We’ve attended one GAP event at Robyn’s at Otaki and we’re looking forward to more outings where he can learn that not everyone is out to get him. :)
Rob works from home and Darcy enjoys spending the day at work with ‘Dad’. This usually entails sleeping either in his bed or next to the heater. What a life! But he’s always keen for a walk, not so much when the weather is awful, but he gets his water proof coat put on and into the southerly gale we go!
We really enjoy him, and can’t imagine life without Darcy!

Update from our foster girl Lilly !

Monday, July 11, 2011
Lucy, Lilly and Phoebe with their Mum Jane
A while ago, I have written about our very special foster girl Lilly, who is a displaced Christchurch greyhound (link is here).
Lilly has in the meantime found a lovely new home, with Jane and Ian in Carterton. I just got a lovely email and pictures from her Mum Jane:

Well, we have had Lilly now for three weeks and she has settled in brilliantly (although it did take a few days, as was to be expected as she had quite a few moves and changes to adjust to in the last few months). She gets on really well with our other greyhound, 8 year old  Phoebe, and our little Maltese/Jack Russell cross terrier Lucy who we have had from a puppy and is now 5 years old.
Even though Lilly is 9 years old she is very young at heart and loves nothing more than playing with her cuddly fluffy squeaky ball in the house, of which we have two, and there is always a race between Lilly and Lucy to see who can get to it first!! As I work from home Lilly likes to spend most of her day on her bed in the office, she is a great companion.

Lilly and Phoebe
We have seven acres so she has plenty of space to run around and she is surprisingly energetic for her age. She is just a lovely dog and is a perfect addition to the family. We are just so pleased we were able to offer her a forever home after the very sad circumstances of losing her home and being separated from her owners which must have been heartbreaking for them. I hope it will be some consolation to them that she has found a new and loving home with us here in the Wairarapa.

Update from Scottie (Thrilling Shot)

Angela from Auckland just sent us some pictures of her Scottie (Thrilling Shot) who joined her family a week ago. Angela wrote:
Our first week with Scottie (nee Shottie) has been great. We can't believe how quickly he's settled in and become one of the family. He's pretty scared of our old cat though and keeps out of her way. He loves my daughter and follows her around, much to her delight.
We can't thank you enough for picking us to care for him, he's a star!

We need your help

Sunday, July 10, 2011
Spring 2010 edition Greyhounds As Pets newsletter 'Fast Friends' featured an excellent article written by GAP Director Jacqui Eyley.
I have been thinking of featuring this article here for ages -finally, here it is. Have a read -  gives a food for thought, interesting statistics and also tips on how to promote adoptions of our gorgeous hounds. I have highlighted some of the most startling facts.
Here is the first part of the article (in blue):

"Occasionally people ask me whether we’ve reached saturation point. “Does everyone who might want to adopt a greyhound now have one?’ Well I’ve always thought that couldn’t possibly be true because everyone who likes dogs would have one! Not to mention all those people we’ve met who told us they don’t really like dogs but have gone on to adore their greyhound. But my Board like me to come up with facts so I’ve been doing some maths.

According to a survey undertaken by a pet food manufacturer, New Zealand has around 600,000 dogs and, according to the internet, the average lifespan of a dog living in the western world is 12.8 years. The same site tells us the average age for a greyhound is 13.2 years, so longer than average – that’s good news! So by my working that means 46,875 dogs are bought, adopted or otherwise acquired each year in New Zealand. If just one percent of those dogs were greyhounds then we’d be well on the way to caring for all of the greyhounds needing homes each year. If we could make it two percent then we’d be haranguing trainers to give us their dogs as soon as they were looking the slightest bit slow.

So there you go, it can’t be that hard can it? It’s not like we’re trying to find homes for the Chinese Crested!
Our greyhounds are beautiful, sleek and elegant. They have a long and noble history as the favoured pets o pharaohs and the kings of England. They’re intelligent and affectionate. They are capable of breathtaking speed (18 metres per second according to Wiki) and can out-race any dog, paws down, at the park; but they’re happy to snooze when we’re busy. Perfect!
So here is our challenge: just one percent, ladies and gentlemen."

I always knew that the number of ex-racers retiring every year (and needing pet homes) was very small (in fact negligible) compared to thousands of  puppies in puppy mills and thousands of poor cross breed pups who are product of owners not desexing their dogs. The number is also negligible compared to number of purebred dogs from legitimate breeders who sell their puppies to the market.  Nevertheless, it was great to see some concrete numbers.
One percent ! It is amazing. If we reached 2% - I think GAP would need volunteers at every greyhound track, waiting after the races and taking slow dogs to the adoption programme THEN AND THERE. My own estimate is that if we reached two percent, we would have problems getting enough greyhounds off the trainers to satisfy demand!
Certainly in the past in New Zealand, greyhounds have not been considered when choosing a pet , unlike in Europe and the USA, where they have been known as great pets for decades now.
In New Zealand, as greyhound adoption is relatively new concept, there are still lots of misconceptions about the breed. I am sure that many of GAP owners have been asked hilarious questions by others: whether greyhounds needed hours and hours of exercise every day, whether they were agressive because they race muzzled, whether they would bite children, whether it was safe to have a greyhound living with children,  whether they needed loads of outdoors space and huge sections, whether they are able to live inside the house (!) etc.
It is up to us, greyhound lovers and greyhound owners, to try and dispel these myths. In the second part of her article, Jacqui has some excellent tips:

"Take your greyhound with you.
Our best advert is the hounds themselves so if you’re going somewhere dog-friendly then take your hound along
. He’ll enjoy the outing and people will become more aware that greyhounds make great pets. Dog-friendly cafés are an ideal spot and sipping your café latte is a great way to carry out charitable work.

Wear your vest with pride.
We’ve sold a lot of our little blue promo vests but is everyone using them? Putting on your dog’s vest when out walking will help him get noticed and makes you more approachable to people who might want to know more. Obviously make sure your dog is behaving himself when wearing it!
is the best advert in the world – please make the most of him.

Pretty Beryl wearing her GAP vest :)

Give out our GAP cards.
Ask your Area or Regional Co-ordinator for our business cards and make sure you take a few with you every time you go out with your hound. The cards have a greyhound image on one side and the website and
space for your local contact’s details on the other. Next time someone asks about your hound, give them a card and tell them to visit the website.

Pin leaflets and cards up on noticeboards.
Staple GAP cards to your supermarket’s community noticeboard cards. Just write ‘Homes needed for retired greyhounds’, the website and your co-ordinators telephone number above the
image. Ask if you can pin a leaflet or a card on any noticeboard you see. It could be at the vet’s, the pet shop, a café, a community centre, the possibilities are endless.

Tell us about events.
If there’s an event in your area at which you think we should have a GAP Stand, then tell us. Local markets and street fairs are often just as effective as big Expos and are lot cheaper. You could also help at the stand for an hour or two which would be even better!
There are many ways we can promote our hounds but your help is invaluable. After all, your greyhound is the best advert in the world – please make the most of him."

I would also like to add some tips of my own:

Power of Facebook is huge if you want to raise awareness on any issue. Why not post a link to GAP website on your status once in a while, with a note that it features many lovely doggies looking for homes? You never know - a friend of a friend (...of a friend... ) might be looking to adopt a dog, and might find out that greyhound is exactly what he/she needs! :)

Dog Clubs.
Dog Clubs are places where dog lovers meet. They attend various classes with their dogs, and network between themselves and other clubs. Take your greyhound to a dog class to your local club. We need more greyhounds present in dog clubs (classes) in order to raise the breed awareness.
Yes, greyhounds are very trainable IF you choose the right class. I highly recommend 'Canine Good Citizen' (CGC) classes, which are perfect for greyhounds as they are nothing like old-style rigid dog obedience classes which hounds typically hate. Both our greyhounds have CGC certificate (Lucy even has Bronze and Silver level, she is currently training for Gold).
I have written about Canine Good Citizen classes before,  you can find all the details you need here.
Post about Lucy passing Gold and Silver CGC exams is here.

Rally O (Rally Obedience) is another class I would recommend. Our greyhound Lucy has a Silver Medal in this and loves the classes! You can read about it in one of my previous posts, here.

Happy birthday Riley!

Gorgeous Riley (Utar Big Rig) celebrated his 3rd birthday today!
Riley has recently  been diagnosed with benign auto-immune mediated tumour in one eye. That eye had to be removed, so Riley is now a one-eye doggie.  He has recovered great, and still looks so cute:

Birthday boy!
And he can still have a mighty run with his sister Mouse (Sugar Mouse) :) See this recent video taken by their Dad Graeme:

And one of the stills:
Mouse and Riley working the beach :)

Don't forget...I still got one good eye,
and I can spot a treat from half a mile away!

Update from Harley (Black Timpani)

Harley with Julie's daughter Nathalie
Julie just emailed us with an update on her handsome boy Harley (Black Timpani):

I have had Harley for about 6 weeks now and he is big and black and just adorable. The first 2 days he was very shy and hardly ate, but he got over that pretty fast. He took immediately to his designer bed
 and has become good friends with my daughter's old Collie Cross Manix, who is in doggie day care at my place. Manix only understands French commands as he comes from New Caledonia, so Harley has become the only bilingual greyhound in New Zealand! I have never heard Harley bark, so I don't know if he does that with a French accent yet. :)
He loves his walks , but stops every few minutes to admire the landscape and looks a lot over his shoulder. He hates walking uphill and is basically pretty lazy. At times he is taken to the doggie beach in Lyall Bay, where he immediately sprints off, even into the sea! Everyone stops me when I walk him and asks me lots of details about him. I think they all now want a greyhound!

Lately Harley has been a bit silly: I make and collect dolls and he has managed to destroy each doll with the slightest trace of fur or feathers on it, probably thinking they are birds or rabbits.

All dolls can no longer be reached by him now! They have to be pretty high up as Harley can snatch things from the middle of a table without reaching: he is VERY tall!
It is impossible to get cross at Harley though! :)

Pictures of the day - our cute foster boy Red (Classy Fort)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Look at this gorgeous face :)

This is our foster greyhound Red (Classy Fort) who is staying with us for one more week - next weekend, he is off to his new home in Taupo :)

Actually, he is not called 'Red' any more - his future parents will call him 'Rusty' so that is what we have been calling him for a while now .
Rusty is cute as anything, gorgeous waggy and fun boy who loves to play, loves his toys and also loves his bed.

Update on Bonnie (Skidaddle)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

We just got an update and some cute pictures from Bonnie's new Mum Rosey, who wrote:

We were soo excited to get Bonnie (nee Opal), we could hardly contain our excitement, it seemed like I had been checking the website forever and seeing all the wonderful doggies up for adoption and wondering which
one will be ours. But when the timing was right we went on a 'road trip' ... just to the park... ok so the park happened to be a few hours away from home but the kids had no idea till we pulled up the drive and then the squealing commenced!
And of course we had to stop a couple of times on our way home to show her off... even popping into New World Waikanae to show Robyn ! Many pats were given by passers by!
The first few days were interesting: a big learning curve for us, and I'm sure Bonnie rolled her eyes at us many times!, as she patiently waited for us to get up to speed with having such a wonderful creature in the family!
Firstly we had to ignore her somewhat so she could concentrate on settling into her new surroundings......oh yeah that sounds easy enough... but not so easily put into practice... especially for 8yr old little girls!

We worked through the "do you think she needs to go to the toilet?" (as she snored in her bed...) note to self even snoring doggy needs to go to the toilet other wise we have puddle to mop up in morning!

She is so cute when she plays with her toys, throwing them up in the air and catching them again and running around the house and yard with them just like a puppy... not so cute when its the kids favourite teddy or my
laptop cable, but we are learning to be much tidier (ahh well its a work in progress!)

And its loads of fun seeing her try to catch her tail, and run laps around the yard, with now a well worked in track left in her wake!

And lastly getting our lazy butts moving in the evening for our end of the day walk, who would've known how much fun it is to go walking at night even in the rain... its so quiet and lovely...and quiet doesn’t happen often in a house full of kids!
She is so lovely and we are so lucky :o)

Update from Lola (Sydenham Pretty)


We just got an update from gorgeous Lola (Sydenham Pretty) who now lives in Auckland. Her new Mum Jayne wrote:
Lola has found her niche and is just like any other member of our family. She is always around when there is food, leaves her toys scattered for someone to trip over or pick up and spends half the day lounging on her bed...what a life. :)

Lola was quiet for the first few weeks, more of her personality emerged as she gained confidence in her new surroundings. She has a selection of old soft toys from my girls to play with, she loves their fluffy animal slippers so unless there are feet in them Lola adds the slippers to her collection. My youngest daughter had to go to school and report that the dog had eaten her homework, her cooking assignment was left within reach...it was just too tempting. Lola is inquisitive and likes to know what is going on, she uses stealth mode around the house to her advantage, she keeps us amused with her antics. It is nice to be welcomed by her happy dance and we have learnt to steer clear of that whippy tail. We enjoy her gentle nature and lots of cuddles, she has made a huge difference to our lives in the short time she has been with us.
Lola attracts interest, in her bright red coat, when we are out walking and loves the attention she gets...always the showgirl!