|Our other Greyhound pages:||Greg's Redwing was bred and raced by our friend, Don
Middaugh. He had a respectable career as a long distance
racer. He came into our lives on September 9, 1998, not
long before he turned 4 years old. Another of our dogs,
LB, had recovered from an injury and was going back to
Tri-State to try racing again, so on September 9, 1998
when we took LB back, we picked up Redwing who had just
been shipped up from Florida. Nothing like having a new
dog to focus on to help keep your mind of missing another
of your kids! Redwing was supposed
to be a foster. Yep, I bet you've heard that before! He
was our sixth Greyhound, and our second fostering failure.
But we added a big, sweet, intelligent hound to the
family. That's failure?
Redwing mixed well with the rest of the dogs when we brought him home. All, that is, except CJ. Ceej and LB are littermates and best buddies. We had left that morning with LB and came back in the evening with Redwing instead. CJ sniffed him, then snorted as if to say "Who are you and what have you done with my brother?" For a week or so he would have nothing to do with him. But they finally became friends.
The big red brindle boy didn't look like much back then. He was quiet and a little bit shy, and just looked sort of droopy and sad. But he bonded quickly and deeply with my husband, John. Looking back, I think he missed his old home and friends at the race track. He didn't respond much to me at all, and had little to do with our other hounds. But he adored his foster Dad. Whenever John would leave the house, Redwing would go to the window to look for him, and howl the most pitiful howl that sounded as if he were calling "Daddeeeeee!" Nevertheless, I worked at finding a good home for Redwing, and after a few weeks some good friends expressed an interest in adopting him. All I had to do was arrange transportation to them, several states away. No problem. When I told John that Redwing was spoken for, he very quietly put his arms around him and informed me that "this dog isn't going anywhere." So the big red dog stayed where he was and became Tony the Tiger-Striped Greyhound.
It took Tony about a year to relax with us. I often called him Sad Sack because he always had such a droopy look on his face. Then suddenly he came to life! And oh, what a clown we found lurking under that stripy hide! Now he's completely shameless! He sings, he talks, he plays, he counter surfs, he hogs the couch, bed and recliner, and most of all, he loves freely and completely. Tony's sudden "blossoming" roughly coincided with two events in the life of our family. First, we moved. Maybe Tony likes the new house or town better? Shortly after that we finally got around to having him neutered. Could that have been it??? We have no idea. All we know is that Tony threw off his shell and became the happy, goofy guy we have now.
Tony is unusually intelligent, figuring out stairs on the first try and learning the house rules in just a couple of days. By his fourth meal here, he knew exactly where his own food bowl would be placed and would go there to wait for it. By the end of the week, he had watched some of our other dogs bowing on command to get treats, and started doing it on his own. Now he's a bowing fool! Of course his intelligence has gotten him in trouble a time or two, like when he figured out how to open the closet door to get to the dog food bag.
Tony LOVES his creature comforts! His favorite spot is in my bed with his head on my pillow. But any cushy piece of furniture will do, even if he has to share it. The only thing that upsets him is when there's no room left for him. Then he'll complain rather vocally until somebody moves over.
From all these pictures it probably looks like Tony doesn't do anything but snooze. And he does spend an awful lot of time doing exactly that. But he's up and around enough to keep us laughing and make sure we're well loved.