Greyhound freezes all the time!

Sitting for a sweet retired racing greyhound in London with my husband. This dog will 1) NOT LEAVE THE HOUSE unless both my husband and I accompany him and 2) FREEZES every few minutes once he’s out and will not move. We give him a little shove from behind, as suggested by the owners, but it rarely works. We just have to wait until he’s ready to go. He’s even stopped in the middle of a busy road! Any advice? Thanks!

@Suellen , why does the owner think this happens? Have you asked them. The dog might be afraid of something --you as the new sitter, though not if he does this with his owners, the leash or harness - maybe it’s painful? Does the dog have some kind of injury causing him pain, e.g. on his foot or leg, or arthritis, maybe he’s too hot or too cold? Are there other animals nearby that he may be afraid of when he stops? Is there a place he can run free? Maybe he’ll do that? If you solve this problem, will you let us know?

I’m not sure that we can offer advice. Shouldn’t the owners be the first ones to consult?

Ok, I have to go with the obvious joke here.
Did you try getting a stuffed rabbit and walking in front of the dog?

Sounds like he’s scared of the outside world, so don’t push him but ask the owners for tips. My suggestion would be to walk him on the lead to the end of the front garden and back into the house, and do it several times. Then walk him on the lead to the first lamp post and back into the house and do that several times, and then the next lamp post etc.

It sounds like he needs his confidence building, literally step by tiny step. It takes time, be patient, and let him feel confident about the first step before moving on to the next.

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The owners admit he’s stubborn, and have themselves had to tip him off his bed and push him out, but I think perhaps he’s a bit more stubborn than usual with us as, although he’s calm and sweet, we are unfamiliar smells and sounds to him. I just wondered if the collective experience of THS sitters had any new takes on this grehound behaviour! Sit is now over, in any case.


Given the owners’ acknowledgment of the dog’s stubbornness, it might just be a part of his personality. Sometimes, certain breeds can be a bit more resistant to change. Your suggestion of seeking input from THS sitters with similar experiences is a good idea, as collective wisdom can often bring valuable insights.

I sat a dog that refused to walk — had an anxiety disorder and was on medication. Super sweet. Her human said I could try to take her out, but she’d probably not want to go. Nice neighborhood for walking and I tried, but she froze on the steps and started trembling when she heard and saw another dog. I didn’t want to force a dog in distress, so just let her do her business in the backyard. She also was perfectly happy romping there, barking at and treeing the occasional squirrel or such.

I figure if a dog doesn’t want to walk, I won’t force it, as long as it has somewhere to do its business and it seems otherwise happy and well.

Separately, I’ve had friends with rescue greyhounds (from dog racing), and they were very lazy. Liked to lounge around a lot.

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Agree @Maggie8K, greyhounds and Salukis are often like taking care of giant cats when at home :rofl: