Greyhound History

 

The origin of the greyhound is deeply rooted in ancient history. In fact, murals and paintings of dogs strikingly similar to today's greyhound existed more than 4,000 years ago. From the beginning, the greyhound was held in high regard in the Middle East and throughout Europe. Pictures of the early greyhound can be found etched on walls of ancient Egyptian tombs, and the Pharaohs rated them first among all animals as both pets and hunters.

The Arabs so admired the physical attributes and speed of the greyhound that it was the only dog permitted to share their tents and ride atop their camels. In early Arabian culture, the birth of a greyhound ranked second only in importance to the birth of a son.

In Persia, Rome and Greece, the greyhound enjoyed similar stature and is the only canine mentioned in the Holy Scripture (Proverbs 30:29-31.)

Their link with nobility was established in 1014 when King Canute of England enacted the Forest Laws, which stated that only noblemen could own and hunt with greyhounds. In fact, greyhound racing in England was first established for the English nobility and could not be enjoyed by other citizens.

Greyhounds were first introduced to America in the 1800's to help farmers control the jackrabbit population. It was not long before competitions of greyhound racing was conducted by the surrounding farmers. This proved to be both an exciting event for the local population but also proved that the greyhound loved the chase and excitement of racing. From this humble start, we now have greyhound racing as we know it today.

To watch a greyhound in action is comparable to watching any great athlete. The grace and beauty of this most noble animal is a sight to behold. At the end of the greyhound's career they adapt to the life of a loving pet with ease and have become the pet of choice among an increasing number of people.