Planning on adopting a greyhound? There’s plenty you can do to make their journey from racing life to pampered pet a smooth transition. Knowing what to expect and how to prepare for their arrival is important. These are our top tips on how to make that first day as easy as possible, and start your new best friend off on the right foot.
Take them straight to the loo
It’s likely a long drive to your house from the kennels, so hopefully your hound will need to go! Establishing the right toileting spot straight away will make toilet training easier. Take your greyhound straight to the spot that you want them to use as a toilet and wait for them to go. Remember that praise and positive reinforcement is key!
Let them explore
Give your new hound some time to sniff around and explore, familiarising themselves with their new environment. It is all new to them and they may have never set foot in a home before. It might be a bit overwhelming, you’ll just have to take their lead and ease them in to their new home.
Give them some space
Let them take their time. There is such thing as too much love, and while there’s no doubt that you will want to shower them with attention and affection, it is important remember that this is a lot to take in for them and that they likely need some time and space to process it all. Let them decompress and become familiar with the sights and sounds of your home and their new world.
They may have no appetite
It is quite common for them to be off their food for a couple of days, try not to stress. Think about it, if you feel nervous or overwhelmed you hardly want to tuck in to a big meal and anxiety tends to unsettle the tum. Offer them food regularly and always have some tasty treats on hand for positive reinforcement – we recommend plain boiled chicken. Fresh water should be available at all times. It’s advised that you keep them on the diet that they are used to to minimise stomach upset. At the kennels we feed SavourLife Chicken kibble and Raw and Fresh meat for each meal. We have these available for purchase when you come to collect your new hound.
Repeat and reinforce
Things that are reinforced are repeated! If you want your hound to learn the ropes quickly it is important to make them feel safe and respected, and to reinforce the behaviours that you want. For example, take them to their toileting spot regularly and reinforce them going in the right place with praise and treats. They need to understand that this is where you want them to go – just because the back door is open doesn’t mean that they understand that they should go there to toilet. Show them what you want and reward them for doing the right thing.
Thinking about adoption? Find out more about our process.