Greyhound and Galgo stories

Jack – our sponsored dog

Jolly Jack - Greyhound Compassion Sponsor A Hound

Jolly Jack


Jack is on of our sponsored dogs at Lincolnshire Greyhound Rescue.  He may have been a “BAGS” dog – one of those poor greyhounds racing frequently at empty dog tracks so that greyhound racing can be streamed 24/7 to high street betting shops or bookmakers around the world.

Jack is a sweetie with a jolly disposition but he needs rehabilitation before he is ready for a home.  He has problems gaining weight and has severe baldness on this thighs.  This stems from the stress of racing and kennel life.  Probably his bedding was paper and sparse on a hard surface, and once wet became coarse for his skin. Now in safe hands, he will respond well to his care programme which includes special food, medication and hands on therapy.

Help us care for Jack 

Zeuss – rescued from barbaric cruelty

Limerick Animal Welfare (one of our beneficiaries) rescued a greyhound from the most barbaric cruelty. He had suffered third degree burns from boiling water.  The kennel owner said he threw boiling water in the kennels to kill snails and the burns were an accident.

Zeuss - rescued from severe burning

Zeuss – rescued from severe burning

The kennel owner did not act immediately and did not provide any emergency treatment. The wound became infected but Limerick Animal Welfare’s vet quickly administered pain relief and intensive medical care. Soon, he was comfortable in a fresh bed. It took more than a month of bandaging and treatment to get him well. Fortunately, Greyhound Compassion had the funds available to contribute to the poor greyhound’s costs.   He made full recovery and was homed with a loving family in Italy.

Zeuss in his home in Italy

Zeuss in his home in Italy

Tess – a grand old lady

Tess, a rescued greyhound

Tess, a rescued greyhound

Tess is a galgo/whippet cross and today she lives in her very own armchair, soaking up the sun in the conservatory of her family home.

But her life wasn’t always so comfortable. She was rescued from a dog ‘collector’ whose collection had grown out of control and reached about 120 dogs left to mingle and fight with each other.

As a result of this environment, Tess is nervous with dogs she doesn’t know but, once she lets you in, she’s very warm and sweet. She is now an elderly lady in very good health at the grand old age of 11.

Tess won’t usually get out of bed for anything less than a pile of Schmackos, but in 2014 she enjoyed the limelight in a publicity photoshoot. Her beautiful face has been helping to raise funds and awareness ever since.

Zuki – tippy toes

Zuki captured our hearts at the Scooby shelter.  She is a slight galgo with doe eyes who has suffered from a parasitic problem and neglect which has resulted in the loss of the toes on her back feet.  Initially the poor girl could stand on her knuckles, providing her feet were “booted”.  Protectora y Sanctuario Scooby tried everything to find a prosthetics expert who could help her mobility. Eventually, after trying several prosthetic solutions, she is mobile by using her boots combined with short steps around the house just on her front feet.  Having made a good recovery and coping well with her mobility, she does know how to turn a look to display her most appealing eyes. Consequently she lives with the shelter manager and he won’t let her leave!


Zuki - rescued by Protectora y Santuario Scooby

Zuki – rescued by Protectora y Santuario Scooby

Zuki has lost her toes as a result of a parasitic problem

Zuki has lost her toes as a result of a parasitic problem

 Magnetic Magic

One hundred and twenty races later, aged 5, Magic took up his position in late 2016 as “fund-raiser” extraordinaire for the greyhounds and galgos in rescue. Having been rescued by Greyhound Rescue, he has escaped his racing commitments and commenced his career on the sofa, interspersed with the odd fund-raising and awareness engagement. At his first few outings to flag days, he was more reticent and leant firmly into his owner, so firmly that he buckled our legs into right angles! Eventually he gained confidence with children, then Vicki came along and he kissed her. Then taking up his Sphinx pose, his public came to him and he became so receptive and loving towards them.

With so many races in such a short career, Magic was probably one of those greyhounds racing around a track devoid of spectators but streaming a live racing product into the high street betting shops.  If it weren’t for the media rights and streaming, greyhound racing would be dead itself.  Instead it has to serve the punters who want to bet on racing anywhere in the world at any time of day.

Magnetic Magic

Magnetic Magic

Blue Linda finally enjoys La Dolce Vita

Blue Linda enjoys the good life in Italy

Blue Linda enjoys the good life in Italy


It’s virtually impossible to rehome ex-racers in Ireland because they are not generally considered to be pet dogs. Luckily, there is hope thanks to Pet Levrieri – an association that rehomes some of the greyhounds in Italy.

Blue Linda was one of the lucky ones who made it to a new home. She was transported to Italy by road. The van she travelled in was well equipped, had air conditioning and stopped every couple of hours for food and water. In just a few hours she was able to begin a new, sweet life.

It costs €230 to prepare one greyhound to go to Italy, so Greyound Compassion’s contributions are often used towards these expenses.

Barney Rubble

Barney being embraced by his new life

Barney being embraced by his new life

Scooby rescued an Irish greyhound in the environs of Zamora in 2015.

The greyhound was in reasonable condition all things considered.  He looked a little worse for wear, dehydrated and disoriented.  Scooby got him back into shape and homed him in Italy.  At the time of his rescue he had ear tattoos and a microchip.  While the microchip was not registered in Spain, Scooby’s enquiries traced the greyhound back to Ireland.  Apparently the dog also trialled in Northern Ireland.  Eventually the greyhound raced only once and did not do well.  According to Scooby’s research the greyhound had, in theory, never actually left Ireland, yet in reality he was found wandering in Spain. We suspect he was probably sold on to the UK and then on to Spain.

The registration of the greyhound should have been changed in Ireland and a fine should be levied for this omission.  Scooby informed the racing authorities in the UK and in Ireland and did not receive a response.

This is further evidence of the loose export of Irish greyhounds to Spain sometimes via the UK.  The price of greyhounds is still very low in Ireland. A greyhound will be held for collection for as little as €50.  However, there is no serious deterrent for profligate ownership and care.

Simon – saved after a road accident

Simon, saved by a skilful vet after being abandoned

Simon, saved by a skilful vet after being abandoned

Simon, a blue galgo, was rescued by Cobie from Scooby who found him in the street having been abandoned by his galguero, only to become the victim of a road traffic accident.

Thankfully, Scooby could reach a supportive orthopaedic vet in good time and he was able to save the leg. The injury also compromised veins and an artery so the surgery was complicated and it was not always clear whether or not Simon would keep his leg.


Thanks to the vet’s great skill Simon was restored to full health and homed with a loving family

The colour blue

Simon’s blue colour is not usually associated with galgos, it is usually the colour of a greyhound. This confirms Greyhound Compassion’s long-held suspicions that the greyhounds bought in Ireland for racing in southern Spain are being bred with galgos. We have seen a few coming into the Scooby shelter in the last few years.

Cora – a miraculous rescue

Cosy Cora - saved from the noose

Cosy Cora – saved from the noose

Cora, pregnant, escaped from the noose which almost killed her in January 2018

A Scooby staff member found Cora collapsed in the street.  She had got herself down from the noose, it was still attached, and made her way in to the village before collapsing.   The vet said it was the worst wound he’d ever seen and the photos of her injury are far too distressing to publish.

The Scooby manager had a good feeling she could be saved.  He knows these dogs and knew their spirit can take over with the right medical care.  He recalled on a visit the UK talking to a long-standing greyhound rescuer and she told him these greyhounds can recover from the lowest moment of their lives and be so forgiving to humankind.  They can also decide when it’s over.  In his experience that woman was right.and although Scooby couldn’t save the puppies, they did manage to save her and she is making a good recovery, cosying up to her rescuer’s partner on their sofa.



Help us to stop the suffering