Behind the Scenes – What Makes a Rescue Tick?

It takes an army of people volunteering an enormous amount of time to keep a rescue running, and GR is no different. The happy photos on social media, the cute houndie knick knacks in our online shop, and the fun we have at events disguises a hive of activity, blood, sweat, and tears. We would like to regularly feature one of our volunteering roles behind the scenes  to show you just what goes on to help save and rehome the greyhounds. It certainly isn’t just cuddling dogs (although we like to do that too!). Want to know more? Read on….

Ausilia Cristiano – Boss Lady of Emails

Emails is our first point of contact and the central email info@greyhoundrescue is a busy one. When you are a volunteer with other work and a home life too it needs discipline to get it right. The job requires consistent timely attention and Ausilia is brilliant at this!

What is your role in GR?

Don’t ask me what year I started volunteering. I sometimes forget what I said ten minutes ago.  I do know I first started volunteering at the Riverstone kennels many years ago. It was my first real interaction with greyhounds. During that time I fell in love with many many greyhounds (George, Rosie, Princess, Bruce, Stevie, and so on and so on).

The increasing demands running our family-run hang gliding business (HangglideOz) and the need to care for my elderly parents (now 91 and 89) increased. So this meant the trip to the kennels became more and more difficult. So a shift to helping with emails seemed logical as I spend possibly too many hours online. Plus I can type really really fast!

That brings me to today, where I happily spend my days fielding all enquiries at info@.

How much time do you spend on your role? (weekly or daily)

I would have to say 2 hours each day. I check emails every morning and night, every day.

What does a typical day/shift involve in your role?

The rescue receives many email enquiries about adopting, fostering, surrenders and donating.  In many cases it is just a matter of forwarding emails to the relevant volunteers. 

These days we have volunteers to oversee applications in their designated geographical areas. Helps spread the workload.  Once applications are received, they are sent to their respective area coordinators for processing. 

I also assist with applications in the South Coast and Inner West areas.  So that means checking applications, discussing any concerns with applicants, organising home visits and the meet and greets at the kennels. It is a very thorough process at GR.  We won’t just send any dog out to any home.  It is all about sending the right dog to the right home.

What is the thing you like best about your role?

I wait ever so patiently for the “money shot”.  That photograph of a family smitten with their new greyhound about to make his/her escape from our kennels.  It is a truly wonderful feeling.

Whilst I rarely meet the families or the greyhounds it always brings a smile to my face. Always.

What frustrates you about your role?

Hollie (smiley face goes here).

Sadly, if we homed 20 dogs in one day, it wouldn’t take long to fill their kennels with new recruits.  It just never stops. 

I guess it is important to focus on each dog that GR has been able to save.  The big picture can be overwhelming so it is important to focus on the positives.

Anything else you’d like to add?
It is more than just a volunteer role for me. It is a passion that has been with me for a very long time. As with most volunteers at GR, there is a small chamber in our hearts just for greyhounds.

I cannot find the words to describe how it feels when you know that you have played a small part in helping a greyhound make the journey from racer to much-loved pet.   I am just one of a long list of dedicated people who make it all happen.  Quite amazing when you think about it.

And finally, through Greyhound Rescue, I was Hollied* and found my very own Greyhound. My Zoumi. My very own little black treasure who has truly stolen my heart.

* Definition: 

Hollied (verb):
[Holeeeeeed]
To induce (someone) to do something through reasoning or argument, without them actually knowing it.  A tactic used regularly by one kennel manager, who shall remain nameless.

 

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Sponsor of the Month

On average, it costs $1100 for GR to home a greyhound. This includes basic vetwork, kennelling, food, and flea and treatment costs. Without our sponsors and donations, Greyhound Rescue could not possibly do the work it does. We are tremendously thankful for them, because they really do help us save lives.

This year we would like to introduce you to the people who help us every month. They are everyday ordinary people helping us do extraordinary things!

January

Karen Coventry

 

Birthday: September 4th 1953

1.When and how did you first start donating to GR?

I have been trying to think about when I started to donate to Greyhound Rescue. I can’t actually remember the date but it was when Sue Tofful was involved. I think it was Sue that ignited the spark that grew to a deep love of greyhounds. I remember seeing a post about greyhound rescue and they were asking for people to become sponsors and I thought I can do that!!!! And the rest is history.

2.Do you have any greyhounds or dogs of your own?

I have 2 greyhounds that I adopted in late 2014. Max was 10 months old when he found his forever home. He is my heart dog and he loves me more than anyone.  He never raced as he was injured and deemed unsuitable. Lucy was 4 and she is an ex racer. She is also my heartdog and she loves us all equally. Max found his feet in his new home immediately but it has taken Lucy 2 years to become the happy joyous dog she is today.

3.How does it make you feel to sponsor?

I remember how I felt as a sponsor when I didn’t have my own Greys and it was a wonderful feeling, I would love all my sponsor dogs as if they were my own. I love to be able to buy little goodies for them and feel overjoyed when they find their forever home. I think it’s a most wonderful and worthwhile thing to do and wish I did live closer to help at the kennels

4.Why do you support GR as opposed to other rescue groups?

Greyhound rescue stood out from the beginning as an organisation totally committed to the care and rehoming of hounds. I always felt that they give a 100% to the care of their rescues as has been evidenced over the years with fundraising to help those in the most need. The volunteers and those on the committee are exceptional.

5.When your friends or family find out that you sponsor a hound what do they say or ask?

Initially they used to say oohhh they are so ugly, thin, have such long noses etc. But once they understood why I do it and certainly since I have my own dogs they understand. I always try to be an ambassador for greyhounds and will spend time with people explaining to them what exceptional dogs they are. The main things people used to say is “why don’t you adopt your sponsor dog” these words would break my heart because the time was not right and my heart used to break because I couldn’t take them all home.

6.What would you tell someone who is thinking about sponsoring?

I would tell them that this would be the best thing you could ever do, as you will certainly foster then adopt and find the most wonderful dog in the whole world who you will love unconditionally and eventually they will love you unconditionally back. I also tell those who think they need lots of room and exercise that Greyhounds were voted the best inner city pets. That gets them thinking.

7.What do you do when you aren’t working?

Playing with my hounds of course. Max loves to play ball with his “mummy” so that does keep me busy. I also have a beautiful Anglo who is retired (hurt) whom I spend a lot of time with. As I don’t ride anymore I am having golf lessons and will start to play golf soon. I enjoy music, wine and going out. I do work a lot but I will also do volunteer work when I retire.

8.What might someone be surprised to learn about you

People always think that I am a very strong person (which I am mostly) but I am a “crier” I cry when I am happy and when I am sad. I feel other people’s pain deeply and I often cry for them. I am very competitive and if I do something I want to be good at it, so I persist till I am. So watch out golfers :0)

9.If you could use three words only to describe greyhounds, what would they be?

Joyous, faithful and oh so loving.

10.And lastly, who is your favourite kennel kid at the moment and why!

I love Queenie she is so beautiful and she so looks like my heart dog Max

 

 

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Volunteer of The Month

Our volunteers are the very backbone of what we do at GR. Without them, we could not possibly save and rehome as many greyhounds as we do. While every single one of our volunteers is important no matter how much they do whether hands on with the dogs or behind the scenes, every month we are introducing just one of them to you and acknowledging their amazing efforts. These volunteers have demonstrated exceptional passion, commitment, reliability, and co-operation to make GR what it is, and we thank them tremendously.

January Volunteer of the Month

Matt Randall

Matt getting thanked by Zia Greyhound for helping out!

Birthday: 02 June 74

1.When and how did you first get involved with GR?

March 2015. I saw the Four Corners program and wanted to do something to help and the rest is history.

2.Do you have any greyhounds or dogs of your own?

Yes – Chelsea Princess, Patsy (3 legged staffie X) and Oreo (GR foster

3.What do you find most challenging about GR?

I find it hard when dogs arrive in poor condition and scared of people – hard to imagine how people can be so cruel. On the flip side it is wonderful seeing them transform into healthy, happy dogs and there is nothing better than seeing them head off to a new home. I love my Saturdays at GR, its my favourite day of the week spending time with these amazing Dogs.

4.Why do you support GR as opposed to other rescue groups?

I support GR because unlike some other rescue groups all Greyhounds are accepted, regardless of their age or condition. I also like the very through adoption process that matches the right dog to the right people.

5.When your friends or family find out that you volunteer what do they say or ask?

People generally ask what Greyhounds are like and if they need lots of exercise

6.What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering?

Do it!!
It is great fun and very rewarding. It takes a lot of time and commitment but you get to spend time with the most beautiful dogs on the the planet. You also get to meet a great bunch of people and Dolly the Goat!

7.What do you do when you aren’t volunteering or working?

I love to travel, but otherwise I’m usually at the beach with the dogs watching the planes.

8.What might someone be surprised to learn about you?

While at University I worked as an extra on UK soap Hollyoaks sadly the producers missed my potential so instead I work in IT.

9.If you could use three words only to describe greyhounds, what would they be?

Elegant, Gentle, Affectionate

10. And lastly, who is your favourite kennel kid at the moment and why!

Selma – Such a happy, friendly and cheeky girl. Impossible to pass her kennel without having a cuddle.

 

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Melly (homed)

Melly is kindly sponsored by Andrea, Fred, Jade, Iain, Jane & Silvia.

 

I’m Melly and I’ve just turned 8. I’ve had a few pups in my time, but those days are over and I’m looking for somewhere I can gracefully retire -or maybe un- gracefully as I’m a bit cheeky! Because I’ve had so many kids (Houston’s one of them, he was a cheeky monkey let me tell you!) I’ve got little patience for whipper snappers these days and would love somewhere that I will be waited on and have some space to myself. A comfy space to roach my days away, a few walks, and lots of love is all I ask for. I may be  alittle grey around the muzzle, but it gives me character and I have plenty of that. Get in touch with the volunteers info@greyhoundrescue.com.au

 

  • DOB: 21.12.08
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: Not tested
  • Other Dogs: Prefers her own space
  • Children: Friendly

 

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Carlie (homed)

I’m Carlie, and although I’m heading towards my senior years I am the sweetest hound you could ever meet, so please don’t pass me by! Not only will I love you all of my days, but I can still be very useful. I hear there are lots of homes that don’t have couch ornaments to stop them flying away, and that is a disgrace! I can definitely help in that department, along with short gentle strolls, keeping you company on afternoon naps, snuggling on the lounge, and assisting with any leftovers. Being past my naughty puppy years I will be a very gentle addition to your home. Get in touch with the volunteers info@greyhoundrescue.com.au

 

  • DOB: 6.4.10
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: Not tested
  • Other Dogs: Friendly
  • Children: Friendly

 

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Houston (homed)

Houston is kindly sponsored by Jackie, Alexandra, Amber, Flora & Liz.

 

Hi I’m Houston, and I have a problem here…. I don’t have  couch yet!! I’m on a mission to find the comfiest couch to land on, and I’m hoping that couch is with you. If tall dark and handsome is your criteria, I already fit the bill. Add to that my athletic build, my radar ears to catch all your signals, and a happy go lucky personality I could just be the perfect catch! I love playing with toys, and those squeaky ones are definitely interesting! I’ve got a keen eye for just about everything so I could also potentially be your neighbourhood watch. Should you choose to help me with this mission, get in touch with mission control info@greyhoundrescue.com.au

 

  • DOB: 26.02.13
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: N
  • Other Dogs:Friendly
  • Children: Over 8’s

 

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Tabitha (Homed)

Tabitha is kindly sponsored by Vanessa, Paul & Lesley.

 

Hi I’m Tabitha, and although I’m a little shy at first I am blossoming into a much more confident hound. I’m a little goofy, friendly, and you will fall in love with my smile. I can shake it like a pro, I’m as cute as a button, and I’m definitely curious and ready to get out of these kennels and into a forever home. I get along with other dogs, am good with children and I promise not to be too much trouble! Get in touch with the volunteers info@geryhoundrescue.com.au

 

  • DOB: 5.2.14
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: Not tested
  • Other Dogs: Friendly
  • Children: Friendly

 

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Marty (homed)

Hi I’m Marty – Marty McDreamboat! and although I’m a big I’m just a gentle giant. I’m pretty happy napping most of the day, and would make an excellent couch ornament or doona weight (it’s important your blankies don’t fly away on a cold night).  I get along with just about everybody without too much trouble (that’s why I’m a dreamboat). Being the greymatian variety of hound with lots of white and my spots I will definitely need a home where I’m not in the sun too much in Summer (but hey, I’m hot enough for all of us, no need to go outside!). If you were a lady hound, I’m the kind of dog you would take home to meet your parents, and they would definitely approve. So what are you waiting for? Get in touch with the volunteers info@greyhoundrescue.com.au

  • DOB: 5.3.13
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: Not tested
  • Other Dogs: Friendly
  • Children: Friendly

 

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Lena (homed)

Hi I’m Lena, and I’m a fitness fanatic because I’m always on the go! I can get a little distracted because -wait what’s that over there, is that a new toy? I LOVE new toys! Um…what was I saying? Oh yes, I can get a little sidetracked because I just want to find out about everything. I LOVE people and I can’t wait to find a family that is going to take me out on adventures, like car rides, walks, runs on the beach, and – ooooo speaking of runs I might need a bit of space to stretch my legs, or you may need to give me a few walks because although I can nap like a pro I do like a good zoom when I’m awake. I’m definitely nosy and into everything so puzzle toys would be a good distraction too. If you are looking for a girl that just want to get out there and do stuff well get in touch with my people! info@greyhoundrescue.com.au

  • DOB:5.2.14
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: Not tested
  • Other Dogs: Friendly
  • Children: Friendly but best with over 8’s

Lena is kindly sponsored by Sparke Helmore Lawyers, Susan, Ally & Varga Brothers Investments.

 

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Solomon (Homed)

Hi I’m Solomon, Solomon the Wise that is! Just like King Solomon I’ve been blessed with wisdom – so I got out of the racing caper and I’m on the lookout for a palace…erm, I mean couch. Seems like a pretty wise move to me. Now unlike my namesake I’m not looking for a harem, although a league of adoring dogslaves fans would not go unappreciated. A treasure of toys would be very suitable,  a few luxury coats for the winter perhaps, I really don’t ask much. If you would like to offer me a home so I can live like a king – I’ll offer you my knowledge. For example, a long nap solves most problems, keep digging until you find what you want, and sniff out every opportunity. So if you’re ready get in touch with the volunteers info@greyhoundrescue.com.au

 

  • DOB: 7.3.13
  • Located in: Sydney
  • Desexed, vaccinated, microchipped, heartworm tested and treated
  • Adoption cost: $350
  • Cats: Not tested
  • Other Dogs: Friendly – loves the ladies
  • Children: Friendly

 

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