The experts, although not unanimous, consider that the Greyhound could have had its origins in the Middle East. Drawings of Greyhound-type dogs have been found on walls in Ancient Egyptian tombs dating as far back as 4000 BC. Though dogs of the type spread through Europe over the years, it was in Britain that they were developed to a standard.
The prototype of the so-called sighthounds, or gazehounds, the Greyhound is well known to many people who have never been anywhere near a dog show and probably wouldn’t even know that Greyhounds were ever exhibited. The show animal is somewhat bigger than his racing cousin, while the coursing version, which hunts the live hare as opposed to the electric, is, if anything, slightly smaller, giving him greater manoeuvrability. The racing Greyhound was developed from that which was used for coursing, and only the cheetah tops the Greyhound for speed. One racing Greyhound was clocked at over 45 mph.
The Greyhound comes in virtually every colour, with or without white. He is possessed of an insatiable instinct to chase and kill, and this is a trait to be remembered when there are small dogs and cats about, but with humans, there is no such problem – he is gentle, affectionate and faithful.
This breed makes a grand companion in a household where the family has the time and energy to give the dog adequate exercise. Despite the fact that he is so active, he is not a big eater. He is also easy to keep clean and shining with a minimum of polishing with a hound glove.