Veterinary questions? Ask a Vet for Answers ASAP
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am so sorry to hear about Lance's behavior. I have had 3 rescue Greyhounds, they are wonderful dogs once they get acclimated to the retired home life. But you are very correct that he is terrified right now.
How long has he been with you?
Do you have any other dogs?
Have you talked about his behavior with the rescue organization?
Did he come right from the rescue kennel or had he been in a foster home?
It may help to look at this from his perspective and his life experiences. At the racing kennel the only place that they are truly safe, and is their own, is their kennel. So a Greyhound that is afraid will retreat and stay there. Even a normally highly food motivated pup may not eat. If he's not eating and drinking then he won't produce waste.
At the racing kennel everything is done with a group of other dogs. Even in his first experience away from the racing kennel he took clues on what to do from other dogs at the rescue woman's home. He has never NOT lived with another dog. He is likely waiting for another dog to come show him what to do.
Many Greyhounds are a bit shy around people, they are bred to please you, and would rather do nothing than do the wrong thing.
Poor guy likely does not even know his name. Names are ***** ***** at the track.
I would put his leash on him, giving him gentle tugs to get him up, out and moving, and try using small chunks of hot dog to pique his interest and reward him for coming with you. The get him out to eliminate and for a short walk.
It is important to not lose your patience with him. You may need to get a harness for him, and leave a short leash on him all the time so you can get him to come out at least 2 to 3 times a day to eliminate and eat.
Don't stare at him, that is considered a threat. Sit on the floor near him read or watch TV, and have some treats on hand should he get curious and come to you. They loved to be talked to, so just keep talking in a soothing voice. He needs to rest now after his neuter. But in a week or so if you have friends with Greyhounds perhaps they can come over and show him how houses work and what lovely people you are!
Not all Greyhounds like other dogs, so be aware that while he may enjoy seeing another Greyhound, he may not enjoy other dogs! They live such a sheltered life they may not even recognize other breeds as dogs. My current fellow is like that.
You may want to call his rescue lady and ask what his favorite treats were, and what sort of insight she can give you about his personality.
The most important thing for these guys is routine and reliability. Try to do things the same time/way every day for now. He is learning to trust you and a whole new world. Give him time to watch from his safe place, but do bring him out several times a day for potty breaks and snacks. Peanut butter or spray cheese on your fingers is a good incentive to stay with you for a bit, and a very positive reward.
That's great that he is eating!!
These guys are shell shocked, but such a joy when they get comfortable, learn to trust & show you their goofy personalities. Keep in touch & let me know how things go!
Tell him Casey says "Hi", and he will attest that retired life rocks!
Thanks! I'd love updates.