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Is a Greyhound Good for a First-Time Dog Owner? Read Before Adopting!

Written by: Chantelle Fowler

Last Updated on April 5, 2024 by Dogster Team

Woman is hugging Italian greyhound puppy

Is a Greyhound Good for a First-Time Dog Owner? Read Before Adopting!

Greyhounds are a tall, muscular, smooth-coated dog breed originally bred for hunting. While they have a reputation for being racing dogs, there’s much more than meets the eye with this breed. These gentle and loving dogs are a perfect pick for first-time owners. Greyhounds are loyal and affectionate, making them ideal companions for many households and lifestyles. That said, several things must be considered before you sign the adoption papers.

Keep reading to determine if a Greyhound is the perfect dog breed to suit your needs.


What Makes Greyhounds Suitable for First-Time Dog Owners?

Greyhounds have a lot of characteristics that make them suitable for people who have never owned dogs before. Let’s look a little closer at these traits now.

Image Credit: Akiko Campbell, Pixabay


Greyhounds are a gentle and loving dog breed. They are surprisingly laid-back with sleek and elegant physiques. Though the breed is famous for its speed on the racetrack, they’re docile and calm at home, which is partly what makes them a great pick for the first-time dog owner.


This breed is smart and quick to learn, provided you train them with kindness and patience at the front of your mind. They might not be the most intelligent breed, but they can quickly learn basic commands and tricks. They tend not to excel as much at complex problem-solving or obedience tasks, but that’s not to say that they can’t learn how to perform them.


Greyhounds form strong bonds with their human family members, though they sometimes bond with one person in particular. They remain friendly to the rest of the family but will always be more loyal to the person they’ve connected to most.

Greyhounds are an affectionate breed that loves nothing more than spending time with their family members. They adore snuggles and belly rubs and will love greeting you at the door when you come home from work.

woman kissing her greyhound pet
Image By: daniromphoto, Shutterstock

Lower Activity Needs

People think that because Greyhounds have a reputation for racing, they’ll need a lot of physical activity. While they occasionally enjoy short bursts of energy, their favorite pastime is sleeping. They’re happy with a daily walk and would be okay joining you as a jogging partner, too.

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What Are the Downsides to Greyhounds?

While Greyhounds have a lot of amazing qualities, there are some “cons” to owning one of these big, beautiful dogs, too.

Large Size

First, their size may not be compatible with all homes or families. They can weigh close to 100 pounds, so if you have small children, you might want to wait until they’re a bit older to adopt one of these big pups. Their large size makes them mostly incompatible with apartment life, not only because they won’t have the kind of space they need but because most landlords won’t accept such big dogs.

greyhound standing on grass
Image By: nonmisvegliate, Pixabay


For such a short-haired breed, Greyhounds shed a lot. So, you should expect to brush your dog at least once a week and vacuum your space several times weekly to keep shedding hair at bay.

Incompatible With Weather Extremes

This may be a big breed, but don’t let its size fool you into thinking it’s hardy for all weather. Greyhounds have very thin coats and a much lower body fat percentage than other breeds. As a result, they cannot be left outside when the weather is too cold or too hot.

If you live somewhere that experiences true winter, you’ll probably need to invest in a high-quality winter coat to keep your pup warm.

Strong Prey Drive

This breed has a strong prey drive that can give it a one-track mind if it finds something it wants to pursue. For example, if a Greyhound sees a squirrel down the street, it may hone in on the critter and stop at nothing until it gets it. Unfortunately, this strong prey drive can get it into trouble if it runs into traffic or runs away while in pursuit.

greyhound running
Image By: Herbert Aust, Pixabay

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Where to Find a Greyhound to Adopt

While it’s tempting to adopt a Greyhound puppy from a breeder, we urge you to consider adopting a sweet, fully-trained adult from your local rescue instead.

When racing Greyhounds run their last race, they are often given up to shelters, abandoned, or even euthanized. But don’t let its racing past deter you; these well-trained pups can adapt wonderfully to a life at home loving you.

Other Great Breeds for First-Time Dog Owners

While Greyhounds make fantastic dogs for first-time owners, they aren’t the only breed you should consider.

Other dog breeds to look at if you’re searching for your first dog include:


Final Thoughts

Greyhounds are a fantastic dog breed for first-time dog owners. They are gentle, loyal, laid back, and extremely affectionate. They don’t need as much exercise as you think and are content to spend the afternoon napping instead of hiking. But your Greyhound will have your back if you need a jogging partner.

If you’re considering welcoming a Greyhound into your family, please do your research beforehand. Only buy from a reputable breeder. Or, better yet, contact a local Greyhound rescue and adopt a retired racing dog instead.

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Featured Image Credit: Veera, Shutterstock

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