Lets face it- you want to know how your lurcher is going to behave. Is he or she likely to be a pain or a pleasure? May be I can throw a little light on some aspects of Lurcher behaviour.
Whilst I must confess that no two lurchers are the same.
They maybe half Greyhound but the other half, or in some cases two quarters, could be anything.
That being said they do share a lot of characteristics. So at the risk of doing these great dogs an injustice I will try and confirm or dispel some of their alleged characteristics.
Would the Lurcher Owner Please Stand Up
There I was sitting next to my wife in a large teaching room with fifteen total strangers.
The plastic seats were set out in rows to accommodate the soon to be providers of “for ever homes”.
We had all chosen a dog and filled in the paperwork.
Our house and garden had been approved by a Dogs Trust representative and all that stood between us and our new family member was a talk by the dog behaviour expert.
The “expert” introduced” himself and then , looking slowly round the room, he asked ” OK so who’s got the Lurcher.
For a few seconds I looker round and then the penny dropped.
It was me the Lurcher, then called Scrappy, was going to be mine.
I raised my hand and said “here”.
He looked across at me and smiled saying ” can you stay behind afterwards I need to have a word with you”.
The look on his face said it all, so your the ones with the problem, was written all over it.
My wife and I stayed behind when the others left and had a long lesson in Lurcher Behaviour and how to survive it.
When this was over he asked ” still want the Lurcher”?
Of course we did, we were sold on him but we did worry about what he would put us through.
I have tried to remember what Dave the lurcher behaviour expert warned us to expect and list our experience of these traits.
Lurcher Behaviour – Fact or Fiction
Let’s take a look at some of the characteristics that are associated with Lurchers and long dogs in general and see if we can’t explode some myths.
Lurchers are disobedient
This is simply untrue.
Lurchers will obey their instincts and do what they think is right. The knack in training your dog is to get it’s wishes to coincide with yours.
Getting your average Lurcher to do things that he doesn’t want to do will only lead to really bad behaviour, usually from you.
Your dog is intelligent and also has a liking for games.
What your dog thinks is a new game may well look like bad behaviour to you but just ignore it and when your lurcher sees that there’s no fun in it she’ll stop.
Lurchers are Killers
If you are a rabbit or some other small fury animal you may be right to think this.
I f you are human, then, you are perfectly safe.
There can be few dogs with a more affectionate disposition than a lurcher. Many find their way to adoption because they lack the killer instinct that sports breeders are looking for.
Lurcher are Theives
Guilty as charged.
This is part of natural Lurcher behaviour but it can be stopped.
I can remember getting my boy from the Dogs Trust and taking him home. Only an hour or so after settling in we saw him pass the glass door between the kitchen and the hall way carrying the uncooked pizza that was our evening meal.
But, fear not, with a bit of training this can be limited. Note I don ‘t say stopped.
Lurchers are Escapologists
If you ever want a device to check out how good your garden fencing is then a lurcher is just the job.
They will get out of anywhere, or conversely into anywhere, given half a chance.
This is why the dog re-homing charities insist on checking out your garden.
After all they don’t want even more stray dogs to home.
Lurchers are Fussy eaters
It is likely to take a while before you find out what your lurcher needs to eat.
Whilst you are finding out you will have to get used to picking up some of the most horrible poo ever passed by an animal.
The only thing that you can do is to change the Lurcher food if it’s causing problems.
It does take a while for your lurcher to get her stomach accustomed to new food so don’t give up too soon.
Lurchers are high Hyperactive
As a lurcher owner you will have to get used to long walks and much ball throwing.
However, once some of this energy is used up you are left with a placid restful dog.
She will happily lie in front of the fire for ages. Or better still climb up on your knee for a rest.
Don’t lose it with your Lurcher
If your Lurchers behaviour falls short of the mark, but your tongue before doing anything.
No matter what mix of dogs has gone to make up your pet, she will almost certainly be sensitive and intelligent.
Unlike some owners.
Lurchers are the most loving of animals and screaming at them or worse, raising a hand to them will break their heart.
Nothing they have done can ever justify severe treatment.
Your controlled, mild, chastisement is all that is needed.
I could go on, but, I’ll let you discover the rest. That is if you haven’t already.
Enjoy the hours of fun that comes from lurcher behaviour.
Correct it where necessary but don’t subdue the mischievous, playful and inventive behaviour.
This is a dog for those who possess patience and have a good sense of humour.