If you’ve ever considered offering a home to a greyhound, but didn’t because you thought it would need a lot of exercise, it may be time to reconsider...
Norfolk Greyhound Rescue says that a hound just needs a couple of walks of about 20 minutes each day and a probably the chance to run off-lead three times a week or so. Their running (zoomies) sessions take just two to five minutes before they are ready for a snooze.
Hayley Pattrick, who runs the charity with her husband Richard, says: “Everyone has a misconception of what greyhounds are.
“When they see them, they see them on the track and they’re muzzled. Most people think they need loads of exercise. And they don’t. They are a five-minute run around the paddock and then they’re done – then they will sleep for the rest of the day!"

Norfolk Greyhound Rescue started about seven years ago. Its main aim is finding caring people to rehome Irish greyhounds – ex racers and also those that never made it to the track.
The charity, which is based broadly in and around Norwich and the north Norfolk coast, also works with other charities and helps lurchers too.
Hayley says: “It’s a tiny charity - myself and my husband Richard run it from our home in Norwich.
“We’re foster-based, so that means all the dogs that we bring over go into foster homes.”
There is also a kennel back-up for emergencies, when dogs need to be saved urgently, which is used occasionally.
Hayley explains that she and Richard have been involved in rescue for about 20 years now and used to volunteer at another charity before deciding to form their own.
“Our friends in Ireland came to us and said ‘Could you help this one?’ and we said ‘Ok’ and then it just sort of grew,” she says.
Hayley recalls how some 18-19 years ago she and Richard decided to get a dog.
“We knew we wanted to get a rescue… so we needed a dog that was quiet, good with kids and would be cat friendly at the time,” she says.
“Richard did a lot of research on the kind of dog that would suit a family and he came up with greyhounds.”

Great British Life: Greyhounds can prove so satisfying to look after.Greyhounds can prove so satisfying to look after. (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
The family then gave a home to a black greyhound called Ruby who lived until she was six years old.
“The rest is history really. We got a greyhound and then it evolved all those years ago,” Hayley says.
“Norfolk Greyhound Rescue is vastly different from any other rescue you’re going to come across. We ask you what you want from your dog and what you need from your dog and then we help you to find the right dog.
“Because our dogs are already in foster homes, you don’t go to a kennel facility and go: ‘I like the look of that one, can I try that one?’
She adds: “We can tell you if a dog can be left, if it’s good with other dogs, if it’s small dog friendly, if it’s cat friendly, if it’s been near children; where they sleep, if they’re food aggressive…
“All of the things that anyone needs to know, we can fine tune that.”
She adds: “A lot of people think they can’t live with small furry things, and that they’re not cat-friendly and that you can never let them off the lead.
“Every dog is individual. We re-home cat-friendlies - I think we rehomed six cat-friendlies last month, all greyhounds.”
She adds: “Greyhounds are lovely. They are so loving, affectionate, calm, gentle. They’re not jumpy-uppy, they’re not licky.
“They’re called 45 mile an hour couch potatoes, because that is what they are. They’re great dogs.”

Hayley tends to concentrate on helping the greyhounds, while Richard concentrates on lurchers. Yet, over the years, they have helped many other breeds from across England too.
“We have homed German Shepherds, Collie dogs, lots of Jack Russells,” Hayley says. “You name it, we’ve homed it.”
Norfolk Greyhound Rescue is self-funded and all financial donations are welcome. Everyone who helps the charity is a volunteer and every penny donated is used for the benefit of the hounds.
Hayley says: “Our vet bills this year (up to the beginning of August 2022) are touching the £45,000 mark so far.”
From January 2022 to the beginning of August 2022, Norfolk Greyhound Rescue had rehomed more than 160 dogs.
In 2021, the charity found 352 dogs their forever homes.
“None of us get paid,” Hayley adds. “We do this for the love of the dogs.”

Norfolk Greyhound Rescue holds various events to raise funds for the hounds. To find out more about the charity, rehoming or fostering a hound, or to make a donation visit the website: www.norfolkgreyhoundrescue.co.uk

Great British Life: Norfolk Greyhound Rescue features in the September 2022 issue of Let's Talk magazine.Norfolk Greyhound Rescue features in the September 2022 issue of Let's Talk magazine. (Image: Archant)