A dozen or so athletes...all with four legs, met Saturday in Onalaska to celebrate their retirement.
April is national Adopt-a-Greyhound month.
Every second Saturday of the month at Petsmart in Onalaska, these retired racers and their owners meet to show off the uniqueness of the breed.
Greyhounds, which can run as fast as 45 miles-an-hour, may race at tracks across the country for a few years. Once their racing career is over, a number of organizations, which include GPA Wisconsin (Greyhound Pets of America) help find loving homes for the dogs. A number of the greyhounds that are adopted out here come from tracks in Alabama and Florida.
Although they're trained to run fast, one common misconception is that they are very active high energy dogs. Instead, said Malinda Gilbertson of GPA Wisconsin, that's not the case at all. “They think that they need a lot of exercise, they're very high maintenance. It's the total opposite. You give them a couch and a quick run around the yard and they're good to go.”
Anyone interested in adopting a greyhound fills out a form to start the process. There are a few requirements to owning a greyhound. Being sight hounds, anytime they are outside, they need to be on a leash so they don't run away if they see something they want to chase. An exception to the lease is having an enclosed, fenced yard so, again, they can't run away. That's one of the things that local GPA representatives help check when they visit a potential adopter's home. Once that's complete, the group helps match up a greyhound to their new forever family.
For more information on the greyhound adoption process, and to see ones that are available for adoption, you can click here for the GPA Wisconsin website.