Muzzles and Body Fat

Muzzles and Body Fat

People regularly ask me, why do Greyhounds in the pictures posted all wear muzzles?   It’s not because Greyhounds are aggressive or mean. Actually, generally speaking, they are sweet and playful. The pictures posted are from when I volunteer at Hemopet. When Greyhounds exercise and play in a group, it’s very easy for one dog’s eye tooth (it’s big) to graze and catch the body or neck skin of another. Wearing a muzzle is simply for their protection. When Greyhounds are exercising and playing, it’s very easy for one dog’s eye tooth (it’s big) to graze and catch the body or neck skin of another. The result could be a huge skin tear (like a zipper opening up). Greyhounds have little protective body fat “cushion” underneath their thin skin layer. Our Greyhound Mickey Mouse has a gentle style of play, similar to our other dogs; there isn’t a need for him to wear a muzzle. We monitor playtime since Mickey is so much larger and faster than our other dogs, he’s can be a bit intimidating. Due to Mickey’s thin skin he also needs to be watched hiking through rough terrain. Sharp branches and rocks can tear his skin quickly, just like teeth can from dog...
Do You Use Retractable Leashes?

Do You Use Retractable Leashes?

When you shop for a leash, look for a standard nylon 4-6 foot leash. As tempting as it may be, as fun as it may look, avoid the retractable leash. You’ve probably seen them being frequently used by dog owners in your area. I’d like to caution you against them, especially when you’re working with a new-to-you rescue dog. First and foremost: you can’t control the dog when it’s 20-30 feet away from you. No matter how experienced a dog handler you are nor how well-behaved your dog might be. You cannot effectively control a dog at that distance – and this can lead to tragedy. In fact, I’ve personally seen several dogs killed who were on retractable leashes. It happens in the blink of an eye, and stories like these are unfortunately all too common. I was in a store in line behind a woman checking out at the cash register. She had her dog on a retractable leash. As she paid for her goods, the dog ran towards the automatic door which opened. Quickly the dog ran out the door, got to the end of the leash and with its force pulled the leash from her hand. The over-excited dog ran out into the street and was hit by a passing car and killed – in just seconds. Another instance, I was at a park with my dogs and came across an owner on his cell phone. His dog was on a retractable leash as he was encouraging his dog to chase squirrels, as he laughed at his dogs antics. The dog darted out in the opposite...