What Is the Average Greyhound Lifespan?

Pet owners love greyhounds because of their quiet, even-tempered demeanor. These wonderful dogs have a very long lifespan, considering their size, and they tend to enjoy good health for most of their lives.

If you’re wondering about the greyhound lifespan, you’ll be glad to know that they live fairly long lives. The average greyhound lifespan is about 10 to 13 years. That makes the greyhound one of the longest-lived big dogs. Some greyhounds have lived as long as 15 years, but this is not the norm.

To help you better understand why the greyhound lifespan is as long as it is, read on to learn more about the history of the greyhound breed and to find out how you can help your dog live as long as possible.

History of the Greyhound Breed

With cave drawings and Egyptian artifacts portraying the greyhound as far back as 8.000 years ago, the greyhound is among the oldest of all dog breeds. In England, greyhounds have long been associated with royalty. You’ll find this noble dog is the subject of many paintings and you’ll find him in English literature throughout the centuries.

This ancient breed probably originated in Egypt, and greyhounds have been prized dogs throughout history. Greyhound-like drawings appear on the walls of Egyptian tombs dating from 2200 BC. The Egyptians treasured these hounds, and their birth and death were recorded as if they were members of the family. Here’s an interesting fact – greyhounds were often mummified and buried with their owners for the trip to the afterlife.

This breed was greatly admired by many different cultures, and greyhounds are the only dog breed to be mentioned in the Bible.

Cleopatra, Queen Elizabeth I of England, President Rutherford B. Hayes and General Custer were all greyhound owners.

The origin of the name “greyhound” is a subject of much debate. Some believe that greyhounds used to be only gray in color. Others believe the name is Old English. That’s because “grei” means “dog” and “hundr” means “hunter.” This argument is strengthened by the fact that greyhounds did originate as hunting dogs. Another possibility is that the name is derived from “gre” or “gradus”, which would mean “first rank among dogs.” Finally, some believe that the name greyhound originated from “Greekhound” since the breed first arrived in England from the Greeks.

The greyhound is the quintessential hunter. Greyhounds were bred to hunt prey for thousands of years and they are the fastest of all dog breeds. Greyhounds can sprint at speeds of up to 40 or 45 miles an hour.

Today, greyhounds are bred for racing but they are becoming increasingly popular as family pets. They are not territorial and they seldom bark. Greyhounds are graceful and quiet dogs that are incredibly loving. Greyhounds love to be petted and rubbed and they enjoy the loving company of their human families. They make excellent house dogs because they are quiet, clean and very low key.

About the Greyhound Lifespan

Why does the greyhound have an average lifespan of about 10 to 13 years? Many factors contribute to the long greyhound lifespan. Even though these dogs are racers, they are known to be quite lazy. This is a low maintenance dog with low exercise demands, which means they have minimal stress in their lives. Combine that low stress with a hereditary lack of major genetic health problems that are often found in other breeds and you’ll get a dog that is quite healthy.

While the greyhound is a generally healthy dog, there are a number of medical conditions that can affect him. These conditions include:

  • An abnormal response to anesthesia
  • Bloat
  • Bone cancer (osteosarcoma)
  • Minor heart murmurs

As long as they live in a calm, happy home where they are fed a healthy diet and given the daily exercise they require, they should live long, happy lives. Even the retired race dogs have the same long life expectancy.

To make sure that your greyhound lives a long, healthy life, feed him a healthy diet and make sure that he gets enough exercise. A greyhound doesn’t require much daily exercise – a nice long daily walk should be all he needs to stay healthy and happy.

The retired racing greyhound also lives a long life and makes a great pet for adoption. According to the New Jersey Greyhound Adoption Program, Inc., most greyhounds are retired from their athletic activities by the time they are 2 to 5 years of age. To learn more about retired racing greyhounds go to our article Greyhounds Get a Second Chance.

How Fast Can a Greyhound Run?

Have you ever wondered, “How fast can a greyhound run?”

The greyhound has a sleek, aerodynamic build with a narrow head and long legs, and the greyhound is perfectly constructed for high-speed pursuit. Greyhounds can sprint at speeds up to 40 or 45 miles per hour, making them the fastest of all dog breeds. A greyhound can sustain his top running speed for about 250 meters (about 273 yards).

The greyhound’s running style and gait are what allow him to run so fast. Greyhounds run using a rotary gallop style – a style that lends itself to sprinting. In this running style, the order of the legs hitting the ground rotates – first the front left leg touches the ground, then the front right leg, then the rear right leg and finally the rear left leg.

Like the cheetah, the greyhound uses a two stage gait. In the first stage, the body and legs are stretched out parallel to the ground. In the second stage, the body is compressed with front and rear legs overlapping beneath the greyhound. This is when the legs propel off the ground to push forward with speed.

How Fast Can a Greyhound Run Compared to Other Animals?

So how fast can a greyhound run compared to other animals? The quickest animal in the world is the cheetah. Cheetahs are known to run up to 70 miles an hour at top speed, but the cheetah can only sustain that top speed for about 200 meters (about 219 yards).

So now that we’ve answered the question, “How fast can a greyhound run?”, let’s look at a different question: Which is faster, a greyhound or a racehorse? This question was addressed at a race track in the United Kingdom where officials raced a top greyhound against a top thoroughbred racehorse over a 400 meter (437 yards) grass course. The greyhound won the race by seven horse lengths. The greyhound’s jackrabbit start was the key to its success. However, the thoroughbred horse was steadily gaining on the greyhound throughout the race, and had the course been longer, the horse would have overtaken the greyhound. Greyhounds are known for their sprinting, not their endurance.

Greyhounds were originally bred as hunting dogs to chase prey such as rabbits, foxes and deer. Because of their great speed, greyhounds have made a name for themselves as racing dogs and they are still used for that purpose to this day. However, the sport is coming under fire by many. To learn more, go to our article Greyhound Racing Comes Under Fire.

How Much Exercise Does a Greyhound Need?

Contrary to popular belief, a greyhound does not need a lot of exercise. Two twenty minute walks a day is usually enough exercise to keep your greyhound happy and healthy.

A greyhound will happily spend most of its time indoors relaxing and laying around. Greyhounds need to burn off their conserved energy with a run or walk. Backyard exercise is perfectly acceptable for a greyhound, but daily walks provide more mental and physical stimulation for your greyhound – and these walks help to build a better relationship between you and your dog.

According to the National Greyhound Adoption Program, how much outdoor exercise your greyhound will need depends in large part upon the size of his indoor living space. If you live in an apartment or small house with no back yard, your greyhound will need about 2 to 3 short walks per day, or 1 to 2 long walks. A good run in a completely enclosed fenced area will also be enjoyable for your greyhound.

The age and physical condition of your greyhound will also determine the type of activity you can engage him in. For instance, a senior greyhound may not be as eager to join in a hearty romp with other dogs but he would enjoy a nice quiet walk with you.

Remember that greyhounds are sprinters, not distance runners. So before you run long distances with your dog, start slowly with a one-mile jog and slowly work your way up from there. If your dog is not conditioned for it, a long run can be detrimental to your greyhound’s health.

Make sure to monitor your greyhound for signs of fatigue or overheating whether you are running or walking. Always carry a bottle of water in case your dog gets overheated. Never walk your dog in the heat. Early morning and evening walks are the best times to walk your dog during the warm weather. Remember, if the sidewalk is too hot for you to walk barefoot, it is too hot for your dog to walk on.

What Is the Greyhound Temperament?

What is the greyhound temperament? Greyhounds usually have a wonderful temperament. They are friendly and non-aggressive, although some greyhounds can be a bit aloof with strangers.

The greyhound temperament is quizzical, sometimes shy, sensitive, quiet and very gentle. Greyhounds are very smart dogs. They possess superior intellect and can exhibit surprising independence.

Like all dogs, greyhounds should be socialized at an early age. That means that they should be exposed to many different people, places, and situations. This will help to ensure that your greyhound grows up to be a well-rounded dog. When greyhounds are not properly socialized, they can become timid and they can have difficulty adapting to changes in their environment or their schedule. So take the time to properly socialize your greyhound.

These quiet, gentle, affectionate dogs can fit into almost any lifestyle, from a small condo in the city to the largest country home.

What Is the Greyhound Temperament Like?

The greyhound temperament is a good fit with almost any household. They are not territorial dogs and they seldom bark. Greyhounds are graceful and quiet dogs that are incredibly loving. Greyhounds love to be petted and rubbed and they enjoy the loving company of their human families. They make excellent house dogs because they are quiet, clean and very low key.

Because of his great speed, the lazy nature of a greyhound may surprise you. His favorite pastime is sleeping on a soft couch or bed. Greyhounds have a very low energy level, which is surprising considering their great speed. Greyhounds need and enjoy a daily leash walk, and because of their ability to run, a greyhound may become a great jogging companion. But don’t worry about being able to give this ex-racer enough exercise. Greyhounds are very happy with a daily walk, and that’s all the exercise they require. And as he gets older, your greyhound may even need to be coaxed into taking that daily walk.

Greyhounds have a very strong prey drive. The urge to chase small animals is so strong that it will likely prevail regardless of any training to the contrary. Greyhounds will bolt off after small animals like rabbits, cats and squirrels. That’s why it is so important never to let a greyhound off-leash in an unfenced area.

The greyhound is a big dog that can weigh anywhere from 60 to 75 pounds or more, but his gentle, quiet nature and his somewhat lazy disposition make him seem like more of a giant cat than a dog.

How Are Greyhounds with Children and Pets?

Greyhounds are mellow dogs who do well around children. Greyhounds are known to be patient with children, but they do best in homes with older children who know how to behave around dogs. A greyhound is more likely to walk away from a teasing child than to snap at him. As with all breeds, you should always teach your children how to approach and touch your greyhound and to supervise any interactions they may have. Teach your children to never approach a dog while he is sleeping or eating, or to try to take the dog’s food away.

Greyhounds usually do very well with other dogs, however, they may view smaller dogs, cats, and small pets as prey – especially if these animals run from them. Some greyhounds have a higher prey drive than others and in some cases, instinct can win out overtraining. In some cases, greyhounds have been known to injure or even kill smaller pets. And while your greyhound may be good friends with your cat, he may still see outdoor cats as fair game for hunting.

Temperament of the Track Greyhound

Track greyhounds have always been around other greyhounds, but other dog breeds. So other dog breeds and cats are foreign to them. A track greyhound has never seen another type of dog or a cat before. They recognize other greyhounds but they may be perplexed or frightened by other dog breeds – or, in some cases, they will simply ignore them. In some instances, track greyhounds can be a bit unpredictable with other dogs and cats, so if you’ve got other pets make sure that you discuss your home situation fully with the greyhound adoption group and make sure to choose a suitable dog for your home.

Because of their previous racing careers, track greyhounds are very used to being crated and transported, and they are used to spending time around strangers. The greyhound breed is rarely nervous or fearful.

You must remember that some track greyhounds have never been alone, so they may suffer from separation anxiety when their owners are away. For this reason, you may want to consider adopting two greyhounds instead of one.

What You Should Know About Owning a Greyhound

Have you ever wondered about owning a greyhound? Greyhounds make great pets, and they are suitable for any type of home including an apartment or condo.

Greyhounds have a very strong prey drive. If you have a yard, you will need a solid fence to keep your greyhound from chasing animals they might identify as prey, including rabbits, squirrels and cats. Because of its strong prey drive, a greyhound should never be allowed to run off leash except in a securely fenced area. If your greyhound were to take off after a small animal, you’d have a tough time catching him because of his ability to run so fast. Greyhounds are the fastest dog breed and they can run at speeds up to 40 to 45 miles an hour.

To learn more about greyhounds, read our article Breed of the Month: Why We Love Greyhounds. 

Although you may be drawn to an adorable greyhound puppy, you should also consider greyhound adoption. When their racing days are over, many retired racing greyhounds are abandoned, euthanized or sold to laboratories. But if they are adopted, these adult greyhounds can easily adapt to home life and give you many years of great companionship.

Adopting Greyhounds

The majority of greyhound pets in America are former racing dogs. You may be surprised to find out that there are actually more ex-racing dogs in homes than there are still on the track. There are approximately 120,000 Greyhounds living as pets in U.S. homes while only 55,000 greyhounds still race on the track.

Although there are a small amount of greyhounds bred for racing, there are very few non-racing greyhounds bred in the United States. Most families interested in owning a greyhound will adopt a retired racetrack dog because there are so many ex-racers in need of good homes.

What Are Greyhounds Like?

Here’s a fun fact about greyhounds. While they are known for their speed, the greyhound’s favorite pastime is actually sleeping. The truth is, they love to cuddle up on a soft couch, chair or bed and enjoy a nice nap. This is not a destructive dog. Greyhounds are very docile and quiet with a low indoor energy level.

The disposition of greyhounds is very loving and affectionate. Usually, the affection they feel for their family will also extend to strangers, but greyhounds can be aloof with some strangers.

Like all dogs, greyhounds should be socialized at an early age. That means your greyhound should be exposed to many different people, places, and situations. This will help to ensure that your greyhound grows up to be a well-rounded dog. When greyhounds are not properly socialized, they can become timid and they can have difficulty adapting to changes in their environment or their schedule. So take the time to properly socialize your greyhound.

Even though they are fast runners, the greyhound is a fairly low energy dog. Greyhounds require (and enjoy) a daily walk to help keep them from becoming bored. But keep your greyhound on a leash during a walk to prevent him from taking off after small animals.

Whether you buy your dog as a puppy or adopt him as an adult, you should begin training your greyhound as soon as you get him home. Greyhounds can have a stubborn streak and they are very independent. So you need to be confident and consistent in your training methods. Just remember that this is a sensitive breed, so you will do better with patience and training methods that use rewards rather than punishment. Treats work great as a training reward.

It is a common practice to muzzle greyhounds, especially if they had been working as race dogs. Greyhounds will nip at other dogs and can hurt smaller dogs and animals when their prey drive takes over. Rescues often recommend muzzling adopted greyhounds until they get settled into their new home. Then you should have a better idea of their temperament.

Taking Care of Greyhounds

Greyhounds have a short, smooth coat that is very easy to care for. It is also a very thin hair coat, which means your greyhound can get the shivers in cold or wet weather. Greyhounds have no fat layer on their bodies to keep them warm in the rain or cold weather. If you live in colder climates, you should have a warm coat for your greyhound to wear in the rain and snow. Also remember that the greyhound’s thin coat leaves him vulnerable to scrapes and nicks. A greyhound can be any color including black, fawn, red, blue, gray or white. Their coats can also be various shades of brindle.

All About Greyhounds

Originally, greyhounds were bred as hunting dogs. Their job was to chase foxes, deer and rabbits. Greyhounds are also the fastest of the dog breeds, running up to 40 to 45 miles an hour. Because of their great speed, they have made a name for themselves as racing dogs and are still used as racing dogs today.

Greyhounds stand about 2 feet, 1 inch to 2 feet, 6 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh between 60 and 75 pounds. The greyhound has a sleek, aerodynamic build with a narrow head and long legs.

Greyhounds make great pets. In addition to their grace and speed, people love greyhounds for their sweet and mild nature. They have a friendly nature toward people and other dogs. Greyhounds are loyal and affectionate to their family. The greyhound is not aggressive towards strangers, but he will let you know that someone is approaching your home.

Intelligent and independent, the greyhound can be considered “cat like” in many ways. Greyhounds do have a sensitive side and will react to any tension in the home. With mistreatment, the greyhound can become shy or timid in nature.

This ancient breed probably originated in Egypt, and greyhounds have been prized dogs throughout history. This breed has won the admiration of many different cultures, and greyhounds are the only dog breed to be mentioned in the Bible.

Cleopatra, Queen Elizabeth I of England, President Rutherford B. Hayes and General Custer were all greyhound owners.

The greyhound was one of the first breeds to appear in American dog shows. It was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1885. The first official coursing race took place the next year. In 1906, the National Coursing Association was founded in the United States. Greyhound racing became very popular and in many states it remains popular until this very day. It is, however, a very controversial sport because so many retired racing greyhounds are abandoned, euthanized or sold to laboratories.

To learn more about the greyhound, go to our article Choosing a Greyhound.

What You Should Know About Owning a Greyhound

Have you ever wondered about owning a greyhound? Greyhounds make great pets, and they are suitable for any type of home including an apartment or condo.

Here’s a fun fact about greyhounds. While they are known for their speed, the greyhound’s favorite pastime is actually sleeping. The truth is, they love to cuddle up on a soft couch, chair or bed and enjoy a nice nap. The greyhound is not a destructive dog. Greyhounds are very docile and quiet with a low indoor energy level.

The disposition of greyhounds is very loving and affectionate. Usually the affection they feel for their family will also extend to strangers, but greyhounds can be aloof with some strangers.

Even though they are fast runners, the greyhound is a fairly low energy dog. Greyhounds require (and enjoy) a daily walk to help keep them from becoming bored. But keep your greyhound on a leash during a walk to prevent him from taking off after small animals.

Whether you buy your dog as a puppy or adopt him as an adult, you should begin training your greyhound as soon as you get him home. Greyhounds can have a stubborn streak and they are very independent. So you need to be confident and consistent in your training methods. Just remember that this is a sensitive breed, so you will do better with patience and training methods that use rewards rather than punishment. Treats work great as a training reward.

Greyhounds have a short, smooth coat that is very easy to care for. It is also a very thin hair coat, which means your greyhound can get the shivers in cold or wet weather. If you live in colder climates, you should have a warm coat for your greyhound to wear in the rain and snow. Also remember that the greyhound’s thin coat leaves him vulnerable to scrapes and nicks. A greyhound can be any color including black, fawn, red, blue, gray or white. Their coats can also be various shades of brindle.

Greyhounds are low to average shedders, depending on the various times of year. A greyhound requires only minimal grooming.

To learn more about owning a greyhound, go to What You Should Know About Owning a Greyhound.

What Is the Greyhound Temperament?

Greyhounds usually have a wonderful temperament. They are friendly and non-aggressive, although some greyhounds can be a bit aloof with strangers.

The greyhound temperament is a good fit with almost any household. They are not territorial dogs and they are not prone to barking. Greyhounds are graceful and quiet dogs that are incredibly loving. Greyhounds love to be petted and rubbed, and they enjoy the loving company of their human families. They make excellent house dogs because they are quiet, clean and very low key.

New Year, New You: Try These Workouts You Can Do With Your Dog

Ready to get in shape this year? How about your dog? If your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, your dog might be able to help you stay on track. Plus, if your dog is also due to lose a couple pounds, you can help both of you stay healthy in the new year.

Obesity in dogs is a problem, and it also can shave years off your dog’s life. Don’t let a lack of motivation allow your dog to remain unhealthy, get out there and get moving! Check out these easy workouts you can do to start making exercise part of your daily routine.

The Walk

Sometimes it helps to start small. Just walking your dog is a great way for both you and your pooch to get in shape and stay in shape. People who walk their dogs typically meet or exceed the recommended amount of daily exercise, and even have more motivation to do additional workouts. If you’re not already walking your dog regularly, you don’t have to start off with a brisk two miles. Take a stroll around the block, or go to the end of your street and back and work your way up to longer walks. This will also help your dog get used to the new routine. Make sure you take water and poop bags with you so you’re prepared for anything, and pay attention to how your dog is feeling so you don’t overexert him.

Hiking

Like walking, only more adventurous, hiking is a great way to get in an easy workout while also taking in the scenery with your best pal. Try to keep a brisk pace so your heart rate stays elevated, and like walking, make sure you pack enough supplies so your dog’s needs are fully accounted for. You’ll also want to make sure you use insect repellent for ticks if it’s not freezing just to be sure you don’t come home with any unwanted houseguests.

Running and Biking

If your dog is up for it and won’t be slamming his paw on the leash before you’re down the street, try running or biking with your dog to help up your cardio. Make sure you have the right harness for your dog before you head out, just using a leash could end badly if you have to stop suddenly or your dog takes off. Both running and biking are perfect for dogs who like a lot of exercise and activity. However, if you have a dog that prefers the couch or is a getting on in years, dragging them outside with you could do more harm than good. That doesn’t mean they can’t come with you though! This dog-friendly basket for bikes is perfect for dogs whose short legs make it hard to keep up.

Dancing

If it’s too cold to go outside, try having a dance party with your pooch! Put on some great music and make up the moves as you go. Dancing is a great way to burn calories, and if you get your dog involved you can both have some fun while also getting in a good workout. Try having your dog do tricks like running between your legs or rolling over to help him get into it.

Doga

Want to get into yoga this year? Look for a doga class! These yoga classes are built to involve your dog so you get a good workout in while also spending time with your furry friend. Your dog won’t get much of a workout in a doga class, but they will get to relax and bond with you which can be a great exercise for their mental health.

Don’t let your New Year’s resolutions go to waste by making excuses. Go out and try these workouts with your dog to start your 2019 off on the right foot!

Are Cat Heating Pads Safe?

Are Cat Heating Pads Safe?

In the winter months you might be looking for a way to keep your favorite feline warm — especially if you have drafty windows. Cats are sensitive to the cold just like we are, so if they’re spending extended periods of time in the cold weather, or just colder temperatures than normal, their immune system can be weakened and they run a higher chance of getting sick.

Your cat might like to sit by the vent or even in the sun, but with winter being a time when sunshine can be few and far between, what else can you do to keep your cat warm? One option is a cat heating pad. This is a small, cat-sized mat that sits on the floor, and when you plug it in it heats up. Similar to an electric blanket, these pads can give your cat a cuddly place to sit on cold days.

Cat heating pads seem like the perfect answer, a warm pad that your cat can sit on? Sounds perfect, right? However, some cat owners wonder about safety. Are cat heating pads safe? For the most part, yes.

The Positives

With cat heating pads, they require little electricity, so there’s not a high risk of fire, overheating, or electrocution. Since the pads are specific to cats, most won’t get hotter than a cat’s internal body temperature and you can feel comfortable leaving them on for extended periods of time. As a whole, with a cat heating pad is safe, so you won’t have to worry about it causing damage to your cat or your home.

Cat heating pads can give your cat a sense of security by giving them a space that is similar to a lap or a warm bed. In fact, most cats will think of it in the same way and find it comforting. They can also provide an easily accessible place for older cats who might get a little stiff during the colder months.

The Negatives

Unfortunately, there are situations in which a cat heating pad might not be safe in your home, but the key to knowing whether it’s worth it essentially comes down to how well you know your cat. The cat heating pad itself isn’t likely to hurt your cat. Your cat, on the other hand, might harm herself by messing around with the heating pad.

For example, if your cat has a habit of chewing things, she could chew through the cord or the pad and end up electrocuting or burning herself. If she goes further than chewing and actually starts to eat the pad, she could also end up with an intestinal blockage. Inside the pad are wires that create heat, and if they’re ingested they can wreak havoc on the inside of your cat and leave you with an enormous vet bill.

You’ll also want to make sure that if you get a heating pad, you don’t get one that can get any warmer than a cat’s body temperature. If the pad is left on too long and starts to get hotter, your cat could end up with burns.

Since the pad is electric, it has a cord. This also runs the risk of strangulation if your cat is rolling around with another cat near the cord and gets tangled up.

If you want to get a cat heating pad, do your research. Make sure you get a heating pad that’s well reviewed and doesn’t overheat. Once you have one, keep an eye on your cat while she’s using it to make sure she stays safe, and avoid leaving it on overnight.

Could Pets Get a Right to an Attorney in New Jersey?

If your pet was abused, would you want the abuser brought to justice? Under most federal and state laws, pets are regarded as property — meaning they have little to no legal rights of their own. There aren’t many scenarios where legal rights for a pet comes into question. But when they are the victims of abuse, it’s led many legislators and animal advocates to wonder, how can those who commit crimes against animals be brought to justice if animals don’t have a voice? A New Jersey politician is trying to make it so that people who abuse their pets are given appropriate punishment.

In New Jersey, new legislation is being considered that would give pets that have suffered from animal abuse the right to an attorney. The bill is specific to cats and dogs, and is being put forth in an effort to have the owners who committed the abuse face justice for harming their pets.

Essentially, this means that pets would be given a legal advocate in court by an attorney or law student as pro bono work, meaning the cases would be taken on a volunteer basis. The main point of the bill is to be able to fight for justice in cases where animal abusers are getting off with little punishment.

Assemblywoman Annette Quijano, D-Union hopes that the bill will provide closure to families where there typically isn’t any. Many animal rights cases end without trial, so the owner gets off without a conviction. If they do receive any sort of punishment, it often falls closer to the lighter end of the sentencing range. She argues that pets are truly a member of the family, and when they’re hurt they deserve justice, especially because pets usually don’t have anyone in their corner arguing for their rights.

With this bill, Quijano hopes that it would bring more attention to animal abuse cases and harsher penalties for those who commit animal abuse.

How Will This Bill Help Bring Animal Abusers to Justice?

If the bill passes, attorneys who volunteer as advocates for animals would monitor and attend hearings, consult with individuals who are familiar with the animal’s welfare, review records on the case, and present recommendations to a judge.

Legislation like this might sound a little out of the ordinary, but it actually isn’t new. In Connecticut, legislation like this proposed bill was passed in 2016.

“Desmond’s Law” was created in an effort to seek justice for a dog named Desmond who was brutally abused and murdered by his owner. His owner received Accelerated Rehabilitation and the incident has since been expunged from his record.

Advocates for Desmond didn’t feel this was fair and set out to create legislation to make sure something like this didn’t happen again. The bill they helped create provides attorneys or law students as volunteers to animals just like the New Jersey bill.

A similar bill to these has also recently been proposed in New York.

What’s the New “Reckless Dog Owner” Law in Illinois?

In 2018, the State of Illinois Senate approved a bill that punishes dog owners who fail to keep their dogs from causing harm to other people. The approved bill goes into effect this month.

The bill itself was born out of tragedy. In 2017, a Yorkshire Terrier named Buddy was killed when two neighbor dogs got out and attacked him. Buddy later died from his wounds at an animal hospital. The owners were obviously devastated and got in contact with their local senator to help them seek justice.

The main reason they felt that legislation was necessary was twofold. First, they discovered that the dogs that attacked Buddy were known to be aggressive. They got out due to their owner’s lack of foresight and attention, and unfortunately, it had a devastating result. Second, the owners didn’t feel that they got enough support from local law enforcement and the existing legislation. While they were offered sympathy for the loss of their dog, there was little else that the police and animal control were able to do.

The Justice for Buddy Act, or Senate Bill 2386, classifies dog owners who don’t take proper care of their pets as “reckless” and penalizes them as such. Through the bill, dog owners are reckless if their dogs kill another dog, or are found running at large within 12 months of being deemed dangerous. For a dog to be deemed dangerous, they would have to bite someone without jurisdiction or be found off-leash and behaving in a threatening manner.

What Does This Bill Mean for Illinois Dog Owners?

The consequences of this bill involve the dog owner giving up their dogs to a local dog shelter, rescue, or sanctuary, where the organizations will determine whether the dog is safe to be adopted. On top of this, reckless dog owners will be prohibited from owning any dogs for three years.

The goal with this legislation is to attempt to encourage dog owners to be more vigilant with their pets and ensure that there’s no way for them to escape or get loose. The hope is that this will decrease the number of dogs that are killed and keep communities safer.

However, on the other side of this legislation are concerned dog owners who are worried that the terms surrounding this bill are too vague. The rules around what determines a dog to be dangerous or off-leash makes some dog owners wonder if it’s safe for their dog to run off-leash at the dog park. “Dangerous” is subjective, and some worry that their dogs could be at risk whether they’ve had any history of aggressive behavior.

Either way, the bill has officially gone into effect in 2019, and Illinois dog owners will have to be especially vigilant to ensure their dogs aren’t posing any threats or have the opportunity to run loose.

Meet the Newest AKC Dog Breed — the Azawakh!

The American Kennel Club (AKC) has officially announced that the Azawakh breed is now fully recognized by the AKC.

Of course, you may have already heard of the Azawakh (pronounced OZ-a-wok), and you might even own one! The Azawakh isn’t a new breed per se — but up until January 2019, they weren’t recognized by the AKC as an official breed. What this means is that the Azawakh breed wasn’t allowed to compete in certain dog show competitions. Before this year, the Azawakh was allowed to compete in some competitions but was not eligible for every single one of the 22,000+ events that the AKC sponsors every year. Here’s a timeline of how the Azawakh rose to its official status:

  • January 1, 2008: The Azawakh is able to compete in Companion Events
  • January 1, 2008: The Azawakh is able to compete in AKC Lure Coursing Events for Suffix Titles
  • June 30, 2011: The Azawakh is eligible to compete in the AKC Miscellaneous Class
  • January 1, 2019: The Azawakh is accepted into the AKC Stud Book
  • January 1, 2019: The Azawakh is assigned the Hound Group designation

The Azawakh is the 193rd breed accepted onto the AKC roster, and they’ll be eligible to compete in the Westminster Kennel Show in 2020.

So, why wasn’t the Azawakh recognized before? There are more than 400 dog breeds in the world, but not all of them are recognized by the AKC. If there are too few of the breed in the United States, or the owners don’t have a significant interest in having the breed receive official registered status, they typically won’t be recognized officially. However, they can end up on other club registrations depending on the restrictions that exist within each organization.

What is the Azawakh Temperament?

If you’re not familiar with the Azawakh, these dogs are lean, tall, and elegant. Often confused for a Greyhound or Whippet, Azawakhs tend to be loyal dogs. They’re independent and deeply affectionate and would make a great companion or guardian for your family.

Where Did the Azawakh Come From?

Azawakhs are sighthounds originating from West Africa. Their long and lean bodies come from their ancestors’ ability to hunt prey swiftly through the desert. These hounds have a thousand-year history, and although they look gentle, these are durable dogs whose ancestors had keen sight and speed to hunt prey in the Sahara.

What Do Azawakhs Look Like?

Azawakhs can have a variety of colors and markings including red, clear sand to fawn, brindled, parti-color, blue, black, and brown. They may also have black or white markings on their legs. Azawakhs are also tall and have long legs that give them the ability to run far and fast. Because these dogs are so lean, it’s not uncommon to be able to see their bone structure and musculature through their skin. To the untrained eye, these dogs might look underfed or malnourished, but this is actually how they should look! The average Azawakh weighs 35-55 pounds, which also aids in their ability to run fast. Similar to Greyhounds and Whippets, they’ll need a warm coat if you’re heading out for a walk in colder weather.

You can learn more about the Azawakh breed by checking out our profile on them here.