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Greyhounds, muzzles and being off-lead in public

Retired racing greyhounds can make great family pets!  But there are a few things you need to know to make sure you do the right thing by you and your greyhound, and don’t get in trouble with the law.

Muzzle Rules
By law, greyhounds need to be MUZZLED when in public – the only exception to this is a greyhound that has been adopted out by the Greyhound Adoption Program.  These greyhounds are awarded a special numbered green ‘GAP’ collar that is unique to the program.

If your greyhound is out in public and is not wearing one of these specially awarded GAP collars, it MUST HAVE A MUZZLE ON.

Greyhounds adopted privately, or from other shelters and welfare groups (RSPCA, Greyhound Safety Net, etc.) must be muzzled when not on private property.

Leash Rules
Regardless of whether the greyhound has been awarded a green collar or not;

ALL greyhounds must be ON LEASH when away from their secure home property

This means that even at the off-leash park, all greyhounds must be kept on a leash.  Failure to do so puts your greyhound at risk of injury, and you at risk of a hefty fine!

Where can I let my Greyhound Off-Leash?
There are places in Victoria that you can take your greyhound for some off-leash exercise.  These are generally fenced areas such as ‘Slipping Tracks’ where there is no risk that the greyhound could get away from you.  The Greyhound Adoption Program can help you find the one nearest to you.

What if I travel?
The rules relating to greyhounds do vary from state to state, so if you plan to travel with your greyhound you will need to understand the rules of the area you will be visiting.  As a guide: Greyhounds need to be muzzled and on leash in all states.  GAP greyhounds with the special green collar are exempt from muzzling in Victoria, South Australia, and some areas of Queensland.  Even with a green collar they are required to wear a muzzle in all other states.

Remember: Council rangers are well aware of the laws relating to greyhounds, and conduct ‘blitzes’ around the state at different times of the year.  You risk a heavy fine if your greyhound is not muzzled when it should be, or if it is found off leash.

The legislation in Victoria that outlines the requirements for greyhounds, (either race dogs or pets), forms part of the Domestic (Feral and Nuisance) Animals Act 1994. You can view the entire act at