By ALLISON HORE
Dozens of dogs found new homes in the “most successful” greyhound adoption drive ever held in Sydney.
The drive by Greyhounds As Pets NSW (GAPNSW) was held at The Entertainment Quarter in Moore Park on the 18th of April, as part of the annual Sydney Family Show.
In the largest public showing of available greyhounds since GAPNSW was founded in 2008, 31 dogs of the 41 dogs brought along for the drive found new homes. And Dr. Alicia Fuller, General Manager of GAPNSW, said the number of dogs adopted wasn’t the benefit of the event.
“The day was a tremendous success, not purely because of the number of dogs who found new homes, but to be able to engage with the public,” she said.
Despite misconceptions, retired greyhounds don’t require a lot of exercise and many prefer to lounge around the house. Their short hair and the fact they don’t have very oily skin mean Greyhounds don’t require a lot of grooming compared to other dog breeds.
Dr. Fuller said adoption drives like the one at the family show are a great way for the public to judge the personality of the greyhounds for themselves.
“Adoption Days give us the opportunity to be face to face with public, to speak about and show what wonderful pets greyhounds make,” she said.
“Our staff can also answer any questions people may have, and these days give the public the chance to see for themselves the placid temperament of the dogs, and of course to have a pat and a snuggle.”
She said the benefit of being part of a larger event was that there was a lot of foot traffic, meaning more than 700 people stopped by to learn about the misunderstood dog breed. Theatre star and TV personality, Todd McKenney, himself an owner of two greyhounds, also made an appearance on the day.
“People’s perception of a greyhound and the reality of what a greyhound is actually like as a pet are often two different things. They are such a beautiful breed and often misunderstood,” McKenney told WSFM radio.
There are many retired greyhounds, and greyhounds unsuitable for racing, who never find a furr-ever home. And many of these dogs are euthanised by the greyhound racing industry, despite being deemed healthy and rehomable. The RSPCA estimates the racing industry in Australia euthanises between 13,000 and 17,000 healthy greyhounds each year.
But the number of people keen to adopt greyhounds is growing. Between 2019 and 2020, a record number of 1,337 greyhounds found new homes through Greyhounds As Pets, an 83.4 percent increase from the previous year.
GAPNSW says anyone interested in bringing a greyhound into their family can check out the dogs who are still available for adoption on their website.