Looking after greyhounds


Please read this information carefully and present it to your vet when you bring your new galgo. It’s important that you have a vet and that you know the emergency service offered at your center. You will have received a vaccination card with the vaccines, microchip number and deworming done, that your vet should know.

Below we present an anesthetic protocol that we find extremely reliable and safe with a mild induction and rapid recovery (we assume a normal cardiopulmonary function):

PRE-ANESTHESIA: (one of the two)
1 mg of Acepromazine 20-30 minutes before induction (epileptic or very old greyhounds receive Butorphanol, 0.2 mg / kg IM, as an alternative)
Medetomidine (0.010-0.015 mg / kg) + Butorphanol (0.2 mg / kg), in the same syringe IM. If the heart rate decreases by more than 30%, administer atropine.
Atipamezole can be used to reverse the effect of Medetomidine.

INDUCTION: (one of the two)
Don’t use Pentothal, since many galgos require high doses for an adequate anesthesia, which increases the risk of the procedure.
Diazepam (0.25 mg / kg) and Ketamine (5 mg / kg), IV. We administer this combination in the same syringe, generally when we use acepromazine or butorphanol as pre-anesthesia.
Propofol (1-3 mg / kg) IV. We use this induction when we use Medetomidine / Butorphanol as pre-anesthesia

Isoflurane or Sevoflurane:
Both are safe even for animals in critical condition or for long orthopedic procedures. It’s very important to administer intravenous fluids during anesthesia. Atropine or glycopyrrolate aren’t necessary unless the heart rate decreases or there is excessive salivation.
Normal blood parameters:
The normal values ??of the haemogram in the galgo differ slightly. The erythrocyte indexes are generally 10% higher than normal. The white blood cell, platelet, and total protein counts are generally lower than normal. Interpret these values ??with caution.

Monitoring of general health

Develop a preventive dental health program with your veterinarian. It is better to prevent periodontal disease, tartar, etc. once they have cleaned and polished their teeth.

If your galgo has accidents with urination, or asks to leave more often, please have your vet examine your urine before assuming it is a behavioral problem.

Galgos are sensitive to excess heat in the summer months. The symptoms of heat stroke are intense panting, bright red gums, collapse or rectal temperature above 40 °. If you suspect that your galgo has a heat stroke, put it in a cool place and soak it in cold water. Call your vet immediately.

Your galgo may have a competitive injury, something not very common in other dog breeds (tarsal fractures, ligament injuries in the fingers, fractures of sesamoid bones, etc.). Generally, it is necessary to anesthetize a galgo to make x-rays. The incidence of hip dysplasia in retired and competing greyhounds is almost nil.

Pyrethrins, permethrins and products with insect growth regulators are safe for healthy galgo, as well as monthly Advantage or Frontline products. Always buy antiparasitic products from a veterinarian since it is very important to use them properly.

The galgo should always be indoors or in a fenced area. He doesn’t like to be alone and can develop symptoms of separation anxiety. When you leave it alone, it limits your available space: a large Varikennel cage can be very useful at first since you will feel more secure. Teach children to respect their privacy, especially when they sleep. Galgos are very intelligent and to discipline them a firm “NO” is enough.


Always use a high-quality dry food that you can dampen slightly with warm water. Feed your dog twice a day and always check to make sure your greyhound is at its optimal weight in order to avoid health problems. Please remember that greyhounds dehydrate easily. If your greyhound vomits, or refuses to either eat or drink, call your vet without delay to prevent irreversible damage to organs due to dehydration.

Greyhounds are generally healthy dogs because they have eliminated many genetic problems by breeding and natural selection of their ability to run. Fortunately, they have also developed a good temperament and behavior.

Good luck with your new family member. You have years of satisfaction ahead.





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