Twenty greyhounds sauntered off to new homes after yesterday’s Greyhound Adoption Day, the first ever held in Bendigo.
About 150 people turned up to meet 22 dogs at the Bendigo Greyhound Racing Association’s track at Lords Raceway, Junortoun.
Most of the dogs are retired racing greyhounds which will be moving on to a more relaxed and sedentary life as a household pet.
Ross and Fleur Hastings from Eaglehawk took home Black Jack, a two-year old greyhound with a hearing impairment, which is not something that GAP sees very often at its kennels in Seymour or Baxter.
The couple weren’t put off by the hearing impairment and, one day after bringing him home, Ross is pretty sure Black Jack can hear more than they initially thought, because he responds to louder noises, leaping up to investigate what is going on when he hears the front door open or the TV going.
This was Ross and Fleur’s first Greyhound Adoption Day; they saw it mentioned on GAP’s Facebook page and liked the idea of giving a greyhound a good home, especially as they had lost their much-loved eight-year-old deerhound about two months ago.
Ross said he was drawn to Black Jack because he seems to be a quiet, calm dog.
The day drew people from Bendigo and further afield – some travelled from Frankston, Geelong, Werribee and Shepparton.
Danny Ralph and his wife Sharon didn’t tell their children Molly and James where they were going when they left home in Mooroopna, just that they were driving to Bendigo. From Bendigo, they took a detour to the racetrack where the siblings spotted greyhound Jake.
“We had no intention of taking one home, just came for a look, but everyone’s fallen in love with him,” Danny said. “He found us, we didn’t find him – he kept following me and I thought ok, I don’t think we’ll be leaving without him.”
The family is no stranger to greyhounds – Danny’s uncle Stan Ralph is a successful trainer in Tooradin. In fact, the day before the adoption day Danny had a $55 win when he put a small bet on his uncle’s dog, Shanlyn Pippin, so it was a lucky weekend as far as dogs were concerned.
When it’s suggested that keeping greyhounds must run in the Ralph family, Danny has no illusions about the lifestyle of retired greyhounds and what’s in store for Jake.
“I think this is a bit different, lying around on the couch,” he says with a wry grin.
Adoption days are held approximately every six weeks; however, every day is adoption day at GAP headquarters in Seymour and GAP’s Mornington Peninsula (Baxter) location where you can make an appointment to meet the greyhounds in a more relaxed environment – call GAP on 5799 0166 or email firstname.lastname@example.org