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  1. Benny, who was adored, was a very quirky individual. But his most endearing habit was to give a cuddle by walking up to you on the bed or the sofa. He would then drop into a play bow position and encourage rubs all over his head and shoulders. When that became too enjoyable, he would simply collapse his backend sideways and crash down on top of you. Fine if you were on the sofa. Less good if he joined you in bed for early morning cuddles when a particularly boney greyhound hip was frequently well positioned to have its fall cushioned by a full morning bladder. Paige is a creature of habit and takes herself off to bed at 8.30 every night. Has done for the past five years ever since she came to us. She used to go up to bed, then if I hadn't joined her, would re-emerge at ten minute intervals to huff at me. It was like being nagged by my mother to go to bed. Thankfully she now takes herself off and is happy with a bit of a cuddle when I come in.
  2. Our beloved Benny was walked every day until the end. It was by himself, and just up and down the street by the end but it was important. My vet advised me to keep him moving because of his arthritis. But it also gave him some mental stimulation, and gave me some lovely time with him. It also helped to keep his bowels moving, although with less exercise, I also changed his diet to make it softer so the output was easier for him too. He also enjoyed going on car rides to parks where we would have a bit of a stroll then a sit on a rug together enjoying the outing. Again, he enjoyed the mental stimulation of different smells, and also some quiet time with me. Bittersweet memories.
  3. My wish list contains the impossible but anyhow: Borzoi Rottweiler Whippet Italian greyhound Galgo Ibizan Saluki Husbands wish list: Deerhound More greyhounds Scruffy lurcher Most likely? We're back up to four greys after Benny sent us Waylin as needing a home. Given I'm the one who manages our dogs, I'll be getting a couple of IGs as soon as there's a space. Hubby hates them, but I'd like something a bit smaller. A whippet is also a possibility.
  4. I've regularly had people ask me if I'm walking Greeeeeeat Danes. I think they get stuck on the 'grey' sound and then can't think of how to finish the word. They only need to say hound at the end. The funniest one was walking Brandi and Paige when they were quite lanky two year olds. Brandi was doing her best supermodel impersonation, and a young boy pointed to her and said, very confidently to his mates 'That's a staffie! We've got one of those at home!' How a 30 kg greyhound could be mistaken for a staffie I've no idea. I think he must have seen just the brindle and not the shape of the dog. Or he's got a very atypical staffie at home.
  5. Today we gave Benny his wings. Many of you know that he came to us two years ago as a rescue, co-ordinated by a group of us here on DOL. He was in pretty poor shape when he arrived, but his love and affection, and joy in life were obvious from the start. It was also obvious that, while he'd taken a long way round, he was always meant to be with us. Over the past six weeks or so, we have been trying to manage degenerative muscle wastage. Sadly, this week the process accelerated beyond our ability to manage it successfully, and we made the very difficult decision to send him home before we lost the cheeky, loving, sparky guy we love so much. He was gradually losing his enjoyment in life, and he told me clearly on Wednesday that he was ready to go. He left us at home, surrounded by his pack, and held by my husband and I. It was peaceful and calm, and he will be returned to us next week. I miss him already. We were fortunate in having the very talented Ffiona Erskine take a photo of him less than a month ago. It captures the dog we know and love so much. (This is photo heavy. Apologies!)
  6. Last one! Most recent photo. He'd just stolen the last seat on the couch. So my husband was sitting there with three greyhounds, and me and one other grey were relegated to the dog beds on the floor. And that's why I spend so much on comfortable dog beds.....
  7. Christmas Party 2014. Six months after we got him, and with his teeth done. He'd only just started putting on weight. Just a day or so after he came home. Note the way he stands on the back of his front paws. He's a lot better now.
  8. Found the mud mum! Running at a fellow Doler's place, Benny found the drain. By the time we caught up to him, his entire face was buried in the mud. So then we had to have a bath before going home. How is this comfortable? Winter nights mean wedging between the humans and snuggling in. In the back yard wondering where the bird he was chasing went. showing a reasonable turn of speed. Though Brandi had been running for 30 minutes by then and was starting to slow down. Winter. He gets tucked in with his blankets, pyjamas and pillow each night. Sighthound/ watch dog same thing?
  9. So Benny has reached the age he was advertised as being at Renbury. 11 years old today. He's celebrated by going for a nice walk and having breakfast, and is now asleep on one of the dog beds. The air conditioning will be turned on and he will be left indoors with the others today. However, tomorrow on the way home from his physiotherapy appointment, we'll stop and get a traditional greyhound treat - one McDonald's soft serve icecream. Or perhaps a cheeseburger. He's doing very well. The corns and nails are an ongoing battle, and he has started physiotherapy to try to strengthen his back end which was cramping/ arthritis so he couldn't weight bear on his left rear. so now he enjoys a weekly session on the underwater treadmill, and then 20 - 30 minutes on the massage bed, which he adores. Then lots of rubbing and stretching. He seems to be coming good, but I think he most enjoys coming into work with me and lying on his brand new dog bed in my office! All in all, he's a happy and chirpy chap. We aim to walk 1 - 3 km a day, though in the heat, that isn't always possible. And he does feel the heat badly. But overall, I think he's doing well. He's cheeky as all get out though, with lots of interest in lizards and birds and cats. He also managed to chase a small off-leash fluffy that bit him this week. I think he wanted to play, but apparently the 'nip and run' game the fluffy generally plays doesn't involve the other dog actually catching up to them and attempting to bowl them over (no prey drive, and he slipped his collar - first and last time that's going to happen!). Benny in his green collar. No more muzzles for this little guy! At work, bed fail. He's become an honorary member of our department on the days he needs his physio and I'm not working at home. He then enjoys some time spent with various colleagues who find a reason to stop by the office and say hi. I'm never more popular than on the days Benny is in the house! Posy fluffy incident last week. Nurse Brandi was concerned, but the puncture wound healed up well, and the other dog has been leashed since. Olympic-level roaching, with the side twist. summer haircut. It isn't something I'd normally do, but the amount of rabbit-fluff really was making his life a misery. This meant he didn't start to pant until the temperature got over 23 degrees. In his case, sadly, it is more like 6 weeks between a good and a bad haircut. In his new Christmas collar from his Secret Santa. Opening presents at Christmas. A definite 'come hither' look there. This is a common look for him. I think he works it well.
  10. Get professional help. But I don't think there are any reliable quick fixes. One of my greys has SA. What helped her was greyhound number 2 but it's taken years until I'm feeling more confident about her. But you do need to be careful about adding another dog. It might help, but I've also heard of cases where the anxious dog taught dog 2 how to be anxious, which obviously isn't the desired outcome. Alone training can also help, but it takes time and needs consistency. Starting with going through the motions of leaving (turning in dishwasher, picking up keys, bag, walking to door, opening door, closing door etc etc) until you leave the house for longer and longer periods, always stopping and returning before anxiety. This might mean several days of picking up the keys and putting them down again. Ideally you want the dog to end up being bored with the whole process. An Adaptil collar might also help in the training process. As I said, Brandi improved with the addition of a second grey, but she's only really settled since I got her on an ongoing herbal supplement and added greyhounds three and four. A behaviourist will be able to help more.
  11. I've got a situation where my oldest dog is also second from the bottom in the pecking order. His main danger is from number 4 (the bottom bitch). They get along fine now, but I'm prepared, when it becomes necessary, to separate the pack out into two groups when I'm not around with Benny and number 1 in one area of the house, and the two girls in the other if necessary. Otherwise, problems we've had have been with over-arousal or our bottom girl feeling bullied and standing up for herself. Generally things work well, but it's a case of on-going management and adjustment.
  12. He's such a little star. Surprisingly, my parents have offered to take him over Christmas so he doesn't need to be kennelled and can go somewhere without stairs. They've had dogs in the past, but aren't interested in them any more (something about spending the inheritance on trips to Italy or something....), so mum offering to take Ben for a few days is a big deal. A lack of muzzle will make it easier all round. But he seriously is the sweetest dog!
  13. We found a lovely muddy drain.... And then we had a bath! (Thank you Doler!) Summer hair cut! The first pic on the thread is when he'd grown back in. He's been much more comfortable this year with less rabbit fur! Benny's favourite place. Such a little smoocher!
  14. So just a quick update on everyone's favourite senior greyhound. I finally pulled my finger out and got him assessed for his green collar. Today was the day, and he passed! Yay! So at the grand old age of 10.5 he'll be able to live rage rest of his life out without a muzzle. Fingers crossed it comes through before Christmas. Pictures will follow when he gets it.
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