Training Greyhounds

Training dogs requires plenty of time and land (50 square metres is usually recommended). One of the key things to remember from the beginning is that greyhounds do not require lots of exercise – two times a day is normally sufficient – and an over-exercised greyhound is likely to race slower. Training greyhounds can be hard work so it is wise for new owners to be accompanied by an experienced trainer during the first few months of training.

Training should begin when the dog is fourteen months old. Trainers should start by teaching him how to launch from a starting box. Next, the trainer should encourage the dog to chase the lure. Over a three month period, the racing distance should be increased from the starting box from 50-500 metres. Once the dog reaches eighteen or nineteen months old, he is ready to practice alongside other dogs and with people at the local track or on the training ground. It is essential that young hounds becomes used to racing alongside other animals accompanied by lots of noise. Greyhounds make excellent pets and quickly get used to people, including children. They should be showered with praise and affection and included in the family home where possible.

Since greyhounds have thin coats, it is important, particularly in cold weather, to keep them warm. During the winter, most trainers put a coat on the hand and install inner slab heating on the base of his kennel.

Sadly, there have been some cases of abuse and maltreatment of greyhounds, particularly with regards to training. Dogs do not respond better when beaten, hit, or made to practice wearing a collar which is too tight. Once retired (usually at 5 years of age), greyhounds enjoy being on a lead and simply require two twenty minute walks each day. Although greyhounds can generate huge income if they become champion dogs, this does not demand a strict and serious regime – greyhounds respond well in a context of fun and particularly enjoy the space to run freely.