Road to Retirement

ImageAfter a greyhound is finished racing, its owner will decide to enter him/her into an adoption program. We get dogs both from Colorado and from out-of-state. If the dogs are in Colorado CGA's Procurement Team arranges to meet with kennels when they have new dogs available to come into CGA.
Procurement Team Visit
A number of things happen when the Procurement Team meets Colorado dogs. The kennel staff will let them know of any injuries or issues, personality traits, etc. The dogs' tattoos are checked, and a picture is taken of each dog, to use when they are put up on the website as Available Dogs.

Because CGA dogs are fostered with families, it is critical that we find out how each dog will do with cats before they are assigned a foster home.
The Art of Cat Testing
ImageWhen we "cat test" a dog, the dog is brought out, by him/herself, wearing a muzzle and a lead. The cat is in a harness and on a lead, as well. The Procurement team watches the interactions between the dog and cat, doing their best to determine if the greyhound is cat friendly or not.

CGA's official Cat Testing Cat, Broadway, with over 12 years of experience, and well over 3,000 dogs met, helps make that job a lot easier. He allows the dogs to sniff him and get an idea of what he is, (for many he is the first cat they've seen close-up). Some dogs will lose interest at this point. Others are interested in playing with him, and for these dogs, Broadway will "correct" their advances, and in many of these cases, the greyhound will decide that he/she does not want to play anymore, and will lose interest. These dogs have been "trained" by Broadway to respect him, and are considered cat friendly.

There are greyhounds, however, that are simply never going to be safe with cats, and behave aggressively as soon as they see Broadway, and become more aggressive with attempts to correct them. Even in these cases, with the dog muzzled and being held by the lead, and a number of people there to intervene, neither the cat or the greyhound are in any danger. We are happy to say that through all his meetings with greyhounds, Broadway has not been harmed in any way.

Thanks to Broadway's nature and the ability of the Procurement Team to read behaviors, we are able to accurately cat test more than 95% of the time. For those dogs who behave differently when they get into foster homes, the fosters have been trained to spot the dogs that may likely cause harm to cats before anything bad happens. The dog is moved to a foster with no cats, and will be adopted to a home with no cats.

ImageBroadway is the Buckley family cat, his "mom", Kathie, chauffeurs him and is the person on the other end of his lead. He has developed quite a reputation among the greyhound kennels, and continues to refine his skills. He truly seems to enjoy his work and understand what his "job" is. When he gets home he gets an extra serving of his favorite canned food, and that's enough for him. He has a wonderful relationship with "his" dogs at home, and spends his days just like any housecat.

Thanks to Broadway and his willingness to travel and do his "job", we help fulfill our mission of finding the right homes for CGA's retired racing greyhounds.

The current members of the Procurement Team are:
  • Rori Mattson - Main contact with the kennels, arranges cat testing times, maintains a database of available dogs, and evaluates temperament of the dogs.
  • Rene Rieser - Maintains photographic database of dogs, takes pictures of every dog tested, posts pictures to the website, and evaluates temperament of the dogs.
  • Kathie Buckley - Broadway's Mom, evaluates both the dog's reaction to the cat, and cat's reaction to the dog to help determine if the dog is cat friendly or not.
  • Vaughn Mattson - Handles dogs and helps protect Broadway.
Entering the Adoption Program
For Colorado dogs, once there is an available spot in our foster program, the hound is picked up from the kennel and transported to the foster home. Soon they will visit the local veterinary hospital, where the dog is spayed/neutered and has its teeth cleaned.  After the surgery, it returns to its foster home and is considered available for adoption, ready to start retired life. 

Click here to learn more about our fostering program.
 

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