Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Who Says That Greyhounds Can't Sit?.............

The greys have been going to obedience classes. To our amazement, we have both managed to get our dogs to sit. Not on a command, but we are able to put them into a sit position and they stay like that looking very shocked whilst we praise them for doing a "Good Sit". Poor Lily is sometimes startled and lets of a bit of pongy greyhound gas when I handle her back end to get her legs to bend into the sit position.

They also managed to walk to heel quite nicely. We also surprised the trainers when they said we could skip the bit where we pick up our dogs (for handling at the vets etc) and despite the size of our greys, we do regularly pick them up and they seem to like it!

Now, we just have to refine that recall. Lily's recall is quite good and we can let her off the lead, but Dizzy just shoots off for miles and miles and miles! Last time I tried in a park, he ran so far, it took me half an hour to walk to the place ran to in about 5 mins. Luckily for me, he loves people so much, he ran up to some builders and they managed to tie him up. I was looking for him for ages, calling his name and I could here a puppy sort of yap in the distance, but as he was tied up he couldn't run back to me.

Since then, we haven't even chanced letting him off unless the area is totally enclosed.

I will try to get some photos of the hounds sitting, they look so confused, I am sure they thought they couldn't do it either!

UPDATE: After weeks of going to obedience class, we realised that we had not passed anything that useful on to the hounds. I tried to get Dizzy to sit myself after one of the classes, and he went into blind panic and nipped my head. Not a serious bite but a panic snap. After consulting the vet, he said the hounds could sit but that they do not like to sit because of the way their back legs are made. We asked if there was any advantage in perservering, and he said no. We also asked him about training classes, and he felt that even after training, he was yet to meet an owner who could get a perfect recall with their dog, and even those who got good results had 'accidents' where their dogs had run into things. He quoted a case he treated where the dog had been let out on a sandy flat surface with nothing around for miles and miles except one post, and the guessed it...ran into that one post and knocked himself out and suffered fractures!

1 comment:

Shell said...

Hi Erssie

My name's Michele and I've just retired our racing greyhound in the last few weeks. His name was Burlington Berty and he ran at Romford for a few years. He's a lovely boy, really affectionate and seems to have taken homing in his stride - he's so good. Just found your site and it's lovely to read about other dogs - I've no experience of them at all so it's reassuring! Your 'sitting' comments made me chuckle. Berty will actually sit sometimes, with no request from me, but it does look rather uncomfortable, and he doesn't do it for long!

One question for you - do your dogs 'play'? Berty seems happy to laze around most of the day, but I am worried that he is bored!