Category Archives: Greyhound

Retired Racing Greyhounds

Shopping day

Saturday, time to go and have a coffee, get Rassilon some pats and do some shopping.

Unfortunately, this week it was dog food shopping. Rassilon’s freezer was icing up (I don;t know why), so I let it run out and I went to buy him some more food. And yes, Rassilon has his own freezer. It was a Christmas present a couple of years ago, so I could have room in my freezer.

I am living on frozen food at the moment as I want to empty my freezers. When my mother left, I bought her big freezer, which came filled with food, so added to my chest freezer, upright freezer, bar sized freezer and the fridge/freezer…I can survive for a while yet on frozen food.

But today was shopping for Rassilon to restock. I didn’t get his chickens feet, because they are at another shopping centre, but I did manage to go wild enough.

dog food

Not quite 3 weeks worth, and no chickens feet yet.

That will do Rassilon for 20 day’s. He gets 2 meals out of each packet of mince, and I get the cheap mince because of the extra fat, as greyhounds need fat in their diet for their skin. The sardines are also for his coat, and he loves his sardines. The devon (also known as Fritze) is just a treat for when I go out.

On the bright side, I got 2 loaves of bread and some drinking chocolate.

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night patrole

Rassilon just likes to go out, then, straight away, turn around and come back in

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What will Rassilon put up with?

Greyhounds are not the ‘huggy’ type dog. It takes their owner time to build a relationship with the dog to a point where the dog trusts the owner isn’t going to hurt it while grabbing it around the neck.

Today in the hospital, Rassilon met someone that loves dogs, misses hers and doesn’t know the traits of greyhounds, so she gave Rassilon a hug.

Now I knew he really hated every moment, but he was the perfect gentleman, and stood there while the woman hugged him.

Her room mate got a kiss, and they both wanted photos with Rassilon, so I was ready with a camera and will drop the photos off tomorrow morning before we go to the nursing home at Woodcroft. (Out first visit there).

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Greyhounds don’t really like hugs from strangers

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Some people even get a kiss.colorbar

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Obviously I am not the only greyhound owner to have to put up with this.

 

 

 

 

Back to almost normal.

Wednesday, Noarlunga hospital therapy dog visiting day. And what a great day it was. Rassilon recognised the hospital and was a lot better this week. I would guess that next week he will be fantastic, and all his stress will have gone completely.

Rassilon was panting today, but this week it was mostly the heat (38 celsius). He was a little stressed, but as the visit went on, he stopped his panting. By the time we got to the lock up ward (dementia patients), he was fine. Of course there were different nurses around, some from RGH that he recognised, so they were a comfort to him

There is one nurse from RGH that we haven’t seen for about 2 months. whenever Rassilon saw her down at RGH she ALWAYS got a kiss, even I don’t get kisses like that. Well she was on the ward at Noarlunga today, and even after 2 months Rassilon remembered, and she got a kiss.

After the visit, which takes a bit longer now because the wards are bigger and set up different, we went to do our paperwork. Rassilon isn’t much help doing this, so he just relaxes. I find if I start to talk to a patient, he will give me a hint by lying down for a quick sleep. And today I had the chance to talk to a few people that were interested in adopting a greyhound, and another that was going to foster greyhounds, thanks to having met Rassilon and seeing the greyhound temperament.

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Naughty me, by SA law I am supposed to be holding his leash

When we arrived at the hospital we were stopped by some staff members who “Just Had To Pat Him”. When we were finished our ward visits, we met a doctor who had seen Rassilon on the ward but had missed out on a pat, so I stopped and was telling her all about greyhounds. Then we were stopped by the head nurse from the Dialysis unit, who wanted to know if we were able to go and visit there. I said we couldn’t at the moment, but to see the boss and he might be able to arrange it. And finally we went to the medical records section where I used to work and all the women are always thrilled to see him.

When we go to visit, TDS has a contract to visit 2 wards, and Rassilon and I are insured ONLY for those wards, but if the boss can get the contract changed, I am only too happy to take Rassilon in to meet the people that are stuck in a chair in that unit for between 4 and 6 hours. In fact, I have volunteered to go into the hospital on Christmas day, a day that anyone stuck in hospital would be thrilled to have Rassilon visit. Of course, we have to get insurance company approval.

Because of my failing eyesight, we are not going too far to do visits, so the new place at Woodcroft Nursing Home will be starting visits in December, and Rassilon and I will be going there. My eyes are fine when I drive short distances, but on longer trips, I get more glare which turns the cataracts opaque, and that is what makes seeing difficult.

So we will have our 2 visits a week, but locally, which is great. Depending on just how far the nursing home is, we might not even have to worry about heat restrictions. TDS cancels visits when the temperature is over 34 Celsius, fortunately the hospital is really close and the car has air conditioning, so we don’t need to worry about that, and we are allowed to park right in front of the hospital, so Rassilon doesn’t need to worry about excessive heat for a long period.

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Message to Pets

Dear Dogs

The dishes with the paw prints are yours and contain your food.
The other dishes are mine and contain my food.
Please note, placing a paw print in the middle of my plate and food does not stake a claim for it becoming your food and dish, nor do I find that aesthetically pleasing in the slightest.

The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack.
Beating me to the bottom is not the object.
Tripping me doesn’t help because I fall faster than you can run.

I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. 
I am very sorry about this. 
Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to ensure your comfort. 
Dogs can actually curl up in a ball when they sleep. It is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other stretched out to the fullest extent possible. 

I also know that sticking tails straight out and having tongues hanging out the other end to maximize space is nothing but sarcasm.

For the last time, there is no secret exit from the bathroom.
If by some miracle I beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it is not necessary to claw, whine,  try to turn the knob or get your paw under the edge and try to pull the door open. I must exit through the same door I entered. 
Also, I have been using the bathroom for years –canine attendance is not required.

The proper order is kiss me, then go smell the other dog’s butt. I cannot stress this enough!

To pacify you, my dear pets, I have posted the following message on our front door:

To All Non-Pet Owners Who Visit & Like to Complain About Our Pets:

1. They live here. You don’t.

2. If you don’t want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture. That’s why they call it ‘fur’niture.

3. I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.

4. To you, they are animals. To me, they are adopted sons/daughters who are short, hairy, walk on all fours and don’t speak clearly.

Remember: Dogs are better than kids because they:

…Eat less

…Don’t ask for money all the time

…Are easier to train

…Normally come when called

…Never ask to drive the car

…Don’t hang out with drug-using friends

…Don’t smoke or drink

…Don’t have to buy the latest fashions

…Don’t want to wear your clothes

…Don’t need a gazillion dollars for college,

and…

…If they get pregnant, you can sell their children.

Playing with toys.

Not Rassilon, but ME.

I have a big back yard. (see photo).

back yard

Big back yard? The car at the back is parked next to a double garage.

I also have cataracts on my eyes. The consequences of the cataracts is that when I go out in the sun, they go opaque and in a few minutes I cant see. It is so bad that if I try to mow the grass in the front yard, I will do one lap of the garden, then I can’t see clearly enough to know what has been mowed and what hasn’t.

As a result of this, the grass in the backyard  got longer and longer, until it was so long that, around the clothesline, Rassilon would disappear in the grass. After a while it was so bad even my heavy duty lawn mower couldn’t manage.

So, it meant spending money, but I bought a ride on lawn mower.

mower side

This makes mowing fun.

Oh the joy. I have mowed the grass, front and back, so Rassilon can once again have zoomies around the garden. He doesn’t just do oval laps either. He goes in all directions, so now he can see where he is going, he has a ball. He was out there yesterday for about 5 minutes non stop.

Here is the dog that, when I got him, was scared by a plastic shopping bag rustling. Yesterday, after a small zoomie, he came up to me when I called him, as I was sitting on a running mower , and I patted him. Unbelievable. (Don’t worry, I had turned the blades off)

I finished the grass off today by using a brush cutter (AKA weed whacker, strimmer, whipper snipper), and while I did all the edges and around the trees, Rassilon sat in the car. He wasn’t scared, just comfortable. I finished the edges, put the brush cutter away and was walking back to the house when His Lordship decided to get out the car. (A brushcutter is like the rest of the named tools, but it has a solid metal blade and not the nylon wire).

Yesterday I mowed the lawn, and at the same time washed the dishes. The best buy I ever made was the dishwasher. I hate washing dishes. And it does a great job and only uses 9 litres of water for a full wash. And it cleans the jugs I use to mix up my instant milk better than I could do it by hand.

So Rassilon is happy again. He has his back yard race track back again. At the moment he is again in bed, having had yet another zoomie and something to eat,

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A cowboy rode into town.

He wore a paper hat, paper waistcoat, paper shirt and paper trousers.

He was arrested for rustling

Give advanced notice…check.

On November 15th Rassilon and I will be visiting Noarlunga Hospital (NHS) as a therapy dog team. It was thanks to the women in Medical Records (Med Rec) that this is possible, so when I found out I was going to be visiting NHS, I sent a special invitation, carefully crafted to fit on 2 pages, keeping the secret until the last minute. (They guessed anyway).

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page 2 med rec invite

It had to happen

Well, it finally happened. We had a bad therapy visit today. And we went all the way to Mitchum, in the heat, to have it too.

The nursing home was okay, they had the paperwork with the list of room numbers we were to go to, and we got to most of them, but something happened that ruined the visit and slowed it all down.

Therapy Dog (4)

Ready for work with his TFS bandanna (for identification).

It started off well enough. We got a parking spot right in front of the home, and the weather was terrible, it was well over 33 degrees. I wanted to get as close to the home as possible so Rassilon wouldn’t burn his paws

I got Rassilon out of the car and into the nursing home where I was able to sit and update my calendar with next month’s TDS visits. TDS phoned me earlier as I was driving, so I just had to quickly note the dates on a scrap of paper.

We met some people in the tea room, a resident with her son, so we went and talked with them. When I went to fill in my paperwork, the son came and asked if his mother could have a photo with Rassilon, so I gave him the leash so I could finish my forms and he could get the photos.

Rassilon went with him and got his photo taken, the I got him back and we went to do our visits. That is one good thing, Rassilon will not struggle to stay with me, he will follow his leash, (so I can leave him with someone if I need to go to the toilet or get a drink).

As we walked into the second wing, Rassilon saw Albie, the home’s pet cat. Well that was it. Visitation concentration was lost, and the cat now filled his mind.

We went into rooms and met people, but Rassi was constantly pulling towards the door to get out and find the cat.

When we came out of the home at about 3.30pm, it was 40 Celsius. I had to rush Rassilon to the car so he didn’t burn his paws. Luckily I remembered to take a jug of chilled water, so when he was settled in the car, he polished off a bowl of water.

Before the visit I got a phone call from TDS with next month’s visits. Things are getting good. I have to go to Glengowrie a few more times and Micham one more time, then I have a visit to Bedford Industries (this is the place for people with mental health problems and Rassi loves going there), then on November 15th we start at Noarlunga hospital. Woodcroft nursing home has signed up for TDS visits. They were getting another company, but they weren’t reliable. The only condition is…Rassilon must be the visiting dog.

Of course, you can guess how proud that makes me feel…almost proud enough to forgive Rassilon for STEALING the leg of pork off the kitchen bench, where I had left it to cool… ALMOST

So, we will be getting 2 visits a week, but they will be local. Then we can still fill in occasionally at other places.

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Dogs, cheering people up without question

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exercuise

My philosophy of life.

The stress of therapy visits?

Rassilon and I went to the Eldercare nursing home at Glengowrie today. We have only been there once before, and Rassilon had to deal with the lift for the first time.
Well, he had to deal with it again today, (and again, no problems), One thing did catch Rassilon’s ear and eye in the home, the budgies. He stood about 3 feet from the cage, but his ears were up and he was having a good look. Then we went and visited patients in their rooms, even getting a request to visit one lady who was not marked on the list.
(It was good there today because I was asked about Rassilon’s racing history, so I was able to tell everyone that he never races and how I was lucky enough to get him from G.A.P.)
He pleased the resident by giving her a doggy kiss and letting her hug him (greyhounds aren’t the hugging type of dog and will normally pull away), then he even spoke. She loved it all and definitely wants to see him next week. Then, as I talked, Rassilon showed how relaxed he was visiting her (that makes the residents feel good too).
Actually, I don’t think Rassilon does stressed.
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I’ve had my exercise, I’ve had a hug and I’ve had your biscuit, now I can relax in the sun.