5 Sighthound Myths you might not know
Written by Michele Way
Did you know that sighthounds stay twice as long as other breeds in rescue because of common misconceptions? We at PAWS are no stranger to a sassy sighthound and we know more than anyone what fab pets they make! So we're here to bust some myths and hopefully get some of our gorgeous long term Lurchers their second chance at happiness.
1. A lurcher is a breed – It’s not, it’s actually a crossbreed. Generally a sighthound crossed with another breed, which may or may not be a sighthound too. A very popular cross is Greyhound to Collie or Whippet to Bedlington Terrier. There are many sighthound breeds from the tiny Italian Greyhound through to the largest breed, the Irish Wolfhound and these can be crossed with any other breed of dog to be a lurcher.
2. They need loads of exercise – This is not strictly true. Greyhounds require less than a lurcher would, but it very much depends on the dog. They are both very lazy on occasion and love to sleep after a short burst of energy. Lurchers will usually have a bit more stamina, depending on which breeds have been used in the cross. Both love ‘zoomies’ and ‘roaching’ (laying on their back with their legs in the air)! Sighthounds are commonly called 40mph couch potatoes for a reason!
3. Sighthounds must be aggressive because they wear a muzzle and it’s cruel to make them wear one – Not true at all. Training a dog to wear a muzzle from a young age is a positive thing to do. Greyhounds wear a muzzle when training as sometimes excitement can get the better of them and they forget their manners. Wearing a muzzle should be second nature and it doesn’t take long to get a dog used to one. A sighthound may wear a muzzle to stop them foraging food from the ground whilst out walking. It could be that they are a bit keen on small furries, such as a fluffy dog or a cat and wearing a muzzle keeps everything safe. Sighthounds do need proper introduction to other breeds of dogs, particularly Greyhounds as they may have only ever seen other Greyhounds. Wearing a muzzle in no way signifies that the dog is aggressive, it is a sensible and responsible owner who prevents the occurrence of an accident.
4. Sighthounds are not very cuddly – not true at all. Greyhounds and lurchers like nothing better than a cuddle on the sofa. Laying their head on your lap and enjoying a belly rub at the same time. Sooty and Blue love human company and having a cuddle every time they see someone new.
5. Sighthounds are not good with children – Not true. As with all dogs, there can be exceptions, however, for the most part the gentle nature of sighthounds means they often make great family pets. There is one thing to bear in mind though, their tails are like whips when they get excited and sometimes the tail will turn into a helicopter, so being smacked across the face by a wildly whirring tail is not always a pleasant experience! Smaller children beware!!
If we have inspired you to look into owning a sighthound take a look at the dogs on Animals Needing Home page to meet our wonderful dogs!
PAWS is still at risk of closure so if you can give a small donation to help us secure a new home we would really appreciate it! https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/p/save-paws-1