Friday, October 7, 2016

Galgos Need Our Help

My Galgos, Jenson & Button: Their Story

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Many of you know my passion for reading, but not as many know my passion for Greyhound rescue. I am a foster parent and have helped to assimilate many new off the track dogs as they transition from their only job they have known-that of a race dog.  I do not plan to write about the greyhound industry, track life or any other aspect of the sport. My job and my mission is to help retired sighthounds find a new loving home. I like to focus on the love and positive future ahead for this awesome breed. Many of you may have have heard that they prefer a life on a couch or soft big cushy bed. It is true!!   Hence the nickname: 40 mph Couch Potato.  

This post is about the Galgo, a Spanish sighthound, who look very similar to what we have come to know as a racetrack English or Irish greyhound, but Galgos have different lineage.  They were once prized but now have become throw away (disposable) dogs for the most part. After one hunting season they are turned out to strive to survive solo.

I have two Galgos who were found together, alone somewhere living wandering the Spanish countryside. They had to survive as best they could and learned to protect each other with tenacious survival skills.  They became a bonded inseparable pair. They were always sighted together, but near impossible to lure to safety.  They feared human contact, but in the end, with the help of Mandy Simpson with Galgos del Sol and her tireless efforts and generous volunteers, they were finally captured. They were then flown to the US and arrived in the care of Greyhound Rescue and Rehabilitation in Cross River, NY.

There are many many  rescue groups throughout Europe and the United States dedicated to Galgo Rescue. This flight from Spain brought two special fosters who I soonI met. Their names were Jenson and Button. (girl and boy)

Once in my care........

They began to learn the ropes-so to speak: for example: they learned to climb stairs, easy for people, but a frightening challenge for a Galgo, who have no idea what it is like to live in a house. Now, when they head up or down the stairs, watch out.  It's a race to the other end and you wouldn't wand to be caught in the middle. Yikes!!

As time passed, everything was new to them. They had to learn not to be afraid of other animals, and people. Birds at the bird feeder, chipmunks, pet store critters, and the infamous mailman. Fortunately, sighthounds should be on leash at all times so the mailman is pretty safe.  Believe it or not they loved riding in the car, but hated walking in heavy traffic near trucks.

As for my neighborhood fauna, I'm not sure the squirrels in my yard will ever appreciate the sudden attack mode stance and fierce drive to lunge at them through the glass. Squirrels are like rabbits to them and a constant torment.

As an avid gardener, their ability to scare off hungry pesky deer who like to decimate buds just as they begin to bloom.  (Yes, deer are cute...but they can eat other things.)

When it rains, they still have an unbreakable habit of licking the puddles rather than their ever present water bowl.

They are catlike and will lick and kiss each other endlessly with sweet affection. These two are inseparable often wrapped in each others embrace on the same pet bed. It is a a priceless picture of cuteness.

As far as weather....they hate the rain, love the heat and literally shiver when the temperature drops below 60.  So, they love the pajamas, blankets, snuggling and laying in the hot sun. Come winter the woodstove is their friend.

So these are my two adorable Spanish Galgos, Jenson and Button who have given more to me than I will ever be able to repay.



Button  &  Jenson 
(tender time together)

Within the next couple of weeks, I will again take in a foster Galgo from Spain. I am very excited and will show you a picture of the newbie as soon as she arrives. 
Until then, please check out the non-profit Galgo and Greyhound Rescue Groups in you area and help in whatever way you can. 



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