Greyhounds have an easily identified appearance, but many people who are unfamiliar with the breed wrongfully assume that they are stern, cold, and serious. This could not be further from the truth for this surprisingly docile breed.
Are Greyhounds affectionate? This breed is known for a strong desire to be close, and many Greyhounds will do anything that they can to show this affection. This can be as simple as rubbing up on their owner or snuggling, but it can also evolve into clinginess.
The truth is that no two Greyhounds are the same, and two affectionate Greyhounds can show they care in different ways. This article explores how to recognize and cultivate affection in Greyhounds. Greyhounds can be a snuggly and sometimes clingy breed, and learning how to manage this behavior properly will lead to deeper bonds and attachments.
Are Greyhounds Affectionate?
Despite their reputation, Greyhounds are one of the most laid-back and friendly breeds you will come across. This creates a great baseline to build a relationship on, leading to an affectionate breed that wants nothing more than to be close to the ones that they love.
That being said, all Greyhounds have different personalities. While there is an innate desire to show affection, this can show itself in different ways. Not every Greyhound will operate on the same level, and there are a few explanations for their behavior.
There are also ways to help a Greyhound come out of its shell and show affection, but these steps should be modified to each dog’s past and personality.
How Greyhounds Show Affection
Greyhounds show affection similarly to other dogs, but there are a few behaviors that they are more likely to have.
Common ways that Greyhounds show affection includes:
- Licking (usually your hands)
- Leaning against you
- Touching you while they sleep
- Sleeping next to you or at your feet
Greyhounds are known to exhibit some catlike behaviors, and they might rub their entire body up to you in a similar manner. They are also known for gently grabbing at your hands or clothes. This is not a bite, but rather the Greyhound gently holding you in their mouth.
Why Are Greyhounds so Affectionate?
Greyhounds as a breed are known to be extremely sociable, and they have a natural tendency to crave affection and company.
Most Greyhounds available for adoption are either retired or racetrack dropouts, so they grew up in an environment of extensive handling. This can lead these dogs to want the same level of attention while leaving them searching for a deeper level of connection.
Greyhounds are a sensitive breed, and the slightest increase in tension can trigger a desire to connect. They are eager to please and will soak up any love you provide, so the breed is naturally predisposed to an affectionate nature.
Encouraging Affection in Greyhounds
The easiest way to encourage affection in Greyhounds is by working on the relationship. Taking the time to make sure a Greyhound is in a secure relationship will make sure proper groundwork is laid.
Keeping them happy is pretty easy. Making time for a Greyhound to play a bit outside and go on two short walks a day will exercise their brain and body.
Greyhounds do not need a ton of space inside, and they will feel a deeper connection if they are not kept separate from the living areas of the house.
Small care tasks like brushing or playing will go a long way, but every Greyhound has their own needs, likes, and dislikes to keep in mind.
Do Greyhounds Like to Snuggle?
Greyhounds are a bit too large to be lap dogs, but that does not seem to stop them. On top of constantly seeking out affection and connection, these sleek canines are some of the most likely to curl up next to you or even on top of you for a quick nap.
Snuggling benefits Greyhounds in a few ways, with bonding and warmth at the top of that list. Not every Greyhound likes to cuddle, so understanding individual nature will help keep an eye out for any indications of stress or illness.
Why Greyhounds Like to Snuggle
Apart from their affectionate nature, Greyhounds love to snuggle up close for some extra warmth.
This breed is not designed for colder weather. They have a very thin coat that does little to keep them warm. Greyhounds are also predisposed to a slighter frame, and they have little to protect them from the frigid air.
Snuggling up close with someone that they trust helps them preserve their warmth and borrow a bit extra. It is not uncommon to find a Greyhound nested in their owner’s blankets or trying to crawl into someone’s lap.
When is Snuggling a Concern?
Snuggling itself is not usually a sign that anyone should be concerned, but in conjunction with other symptoms, it should be addressed.
If a Greyhound is not usually the snuggling type and suddenly wants to cuddle all the time, it can be an indication that there is a major stressor in their life. This can be:
- General anxiety
- Trauma-related anxiety
Greyhounds are sensitive and may snuggle for deeper connection after changes like moving or adding onto a family. In the absence of these events, checking in with a vet is recommended in case there are health issues.
Are Greyhounds Clingy?
Greyhounds are considered one of the clingiest dog breeds, earning them a place in the velcro dogs’ hall of fame. This is considered a natural trait of the breed, but it can be magnified for any number of medical or behavioral reasons.
It is worth noting the difference between clinginess and separation anxiety. A Greyhound may have both behaviors, but the degrees of severity that separate them determine how the owner should interact with their dog.
There are also some humane ways to deter clinginess that starts to become an issue. The key is preserving the relationship while modifying the behavior.
Reasons for Greyhound Clinginess
Apart from their natural predisposition to clinginess, Greyhounds may have underlying medical conditions that cause them to rely on people more. These generally include:
- Loss of sight
- Loss of hearing
If the clinginess is unusual and accompanied by other symptoms then a wellness check is the next step. This can prevent any issues from evolving or give Greyhound owners peace of mind that their companion is just in their feelings.
Greyhounds can also be sensitive to stressors like thunder, fireworks, major moves, or new additions to the household. The upset can be enough to trigger clingy behaviors.
Clinginess vs. Separation Anxiety
Clinginess is a natural desire to want to be around the ones that they love. A Greyhound can be clingy without causing problems, and that is usually the case.
The issues arise when clinginess becomes an anxious attachment style.
Certain dogs will start to panic when the human that they cling to is not around or when they are left alone. This can lead to obsessive and destructive behavior, such as:
- Compulsive barking
- Pacing and panting
- Chewing up furniture or even parts of the home
Separation anxiety will always require appropriate intervention, while clinginess is at the discretion of the Greyhound’s owner.
How to Deter Clinginess
To decrease clinginess, start with ensuring appropriate physical activity. Greyhounds are not workout superstars, but they do enjoy 20-minute walks or a quick romp around the backyard.
Greyhounds are also smart and pick up on patterns of behavior, so clinginess may be triggered by any events that tend to get them attention. If this is the case, running through these triggers without treating or giving the Greyhound attention can desensitize them.
Greyhounds can benefit from having their own space in a home, and teaching them a command like “place” can let them know that they need to go hang out on their own. If this area is in an enticing location with toys and a place to lounge, the Greyhound should have no problem settling in.
Do Greyhounds Attach to One Person?
While Greyhounds are friendly to most people, they are a breed that bonds with one person. This person is usually the one that:
- Pays the most attention to them
- Trains them
- Feeds them
This is the person that they will snuggle up with first, and the bond is often inseparable. They will not be any less family-friendly, but it is usually obvious who their favorite is.