Our role

The state and territory member Societies provide services to animals in need through their shelters and inspectorates. In the national office, RSPCA Australia works to influence animal welfare policy, practice and legislation across the country
Go to Our role

Key issues

The RSPCA advocates for the welfare of animals across a number of industries, issues and platforms. Help from our supporters is important to progress change. Working together is key.
Go to Key issues
take action live sheep export alternate
Priority issue
We are closer than ever to finally…
Live sheep export

Support us

Whether you're an individual or a business, there are multiple ways you can support the RSPCA
Go to Support us
An animal in the RSPCA care being cared for by an RSPCA vet
Donate now to support your local RSPCA and make a difference to animal welfare across Australia


The RSPCA is an independent, community-based charity providing animal care and protection services across the country.
Go to About
about us national statistics
Read our National Statistics
Compiled on a national basis by RSPCA…
Annual statistics


By choosing adoption, you’ll not only have the chance to make a friend for life, but you’ll be giving an animal a second chance and helping support the RSPCA.
Go to Adopt
adopt a pet logo
Visit the Adopt A Pet website
Make a difference to a pet’s life today.
Search Adoptapet

Greyhounds as pets: Three things about greyhounds that might surprise you

Generic Avatar
  • RSPCA Australia
  • Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Cruelty and overbreeding in the greyhound industry have been in the spotlight lately. This increased attention means we’ve seen lots of awful things, but one of the positive outcomes has been that more and more people are opening their hearts and their homes to give greyhounds a second chance at life as a much-loved pet.

But before you adopt one of these lovely dogs, it’s important to know that they do have specific needs. Ex-racing greyhounds in particular need lots of care and patience, as it’s likely that they will not have been well socialised.

To help willing owners and greyhounds in need find their perfect match, the RSPCA has put together an adoption book filled with expert advice on welcoming your greyhound into the family.

If you’re thinking of adopting a greyhound - or if you’ve just brought your new greyhound home - this book has everything you’ll need to build a great relationship with your canine companion.

Much of this advice and information may seem like common sense, but here are three facts about greyhounds that you might not know:

The compulsory muzzling is not because they’re aggressive

In many parts of Australia, it’s compulsory for greyhounds to wear a muzzle when they’re out in public. This has created a perception that greyhounds are an aggressive breed, when in fact, most greyhounds are quite gentle.

Mandatory muzzling was introduced back in the 1920s to stop greyhounds from injuring themselves on the race track.  In many states and territories, these outdated laws are under review, and the RSPCA supports the complete removal of compulsory muzzling requirements for pet greyhounds out in public.

In the meantime, there are assessment programs which can grant your greyhound an exemption from public muzzling. Visit http://www.greenhounds.com.au/ for an example of the program in NSW and seek advice from your council about any local initiatives.

It might take them awhile to get used to living with you

For greyhounds that have never lived with a family, adjusting to everyday life will take time. Things we take for granted, like the sound of the TV or phones ringing, may be new and strange for your dog. They may also be unfamiliar with common home features like stairs, mats, rugs and glass doors, and will need close supervision as they learn to navigate them.

They can be fond of hoarding

We all have our quirks!

Some greyhounds love to collect things – from soft toys to cushions and even shoes.  Their collections can be quite impressive but they don’t usually chew or damage their treasures.  It’s not known exactly why greyhounds do this, but it could be a comfort or coping strategy. Make sure you keep anything precious or potentially harmful out of reach!

For tips on caring for greyhounds, check out the RSPCA Greyhound Adoption book.

subscribe box

Stay informed on big issues and how you can help improve animal welfare across Australia.

Subscribe today and we’ll keep you updated on all the latest campaigns, events and news.