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Week of August 17, 2015

Dear ,

Those retractable leashes look so tempting - more freedom to explore and sniff on walks! But retractable leashes are dangerous and should never be used on or around a greyhound. Indeed, all the dangers of retractable leashes are magnified with greyhounds because of their delicate skin and potential for high speed. For example, take a look at the picture of the poor cow dog. His eyes and tail say a lot. Look closer and you'll see his concern:  His buddy tangled him in a retractable leash. Cow Dog escaped injury, but you can easily imagine a different outcome if Cow Dog lost his patience or panicked. The cord might cause serious burns, abrasions or cuts to his legs as he struggled to get free. Keep these additional dangers in mind when considering retractable leashes:   
  1. Retractable leashes, which can extend up to 25 feet, are too long because they permit dogs to walk at a distance out of their walker's control. Once there is slack in the line, the dog walker has no leash control at all. At 25 feet away, a dog can gulp down something unhealthy without the human even seeing the delectable, let alone steering the dog clear.  A dog can also move
    Margo in a Thunder Leash.
    sideways off a sidewalk and right into traffic. Additionally, interactions with other dogs can escalate into aggression before the walker can catch up to intervene.  
  2. The thin cords of a retractable leashes tend to break more easily than a standard leash. The long cord might then snap back, hitting nearby humans and causing potentially serious injury to eyes, faces or hands. Pictures of these kinds of injuries are too graphic to share here.  But you can find them by googling images for "injuries caused by retractable leashes."
  3. Grasping a retractable leash cord with your hand to try to gain control can result in serious burns, cuts, and even finger amputation. Regular leashes are less likely to cut because they are softer, thicker and easier to grasp. 
  4. Greyhounds easily reach top speed in the length of a retractable leash. Easily. When a hound reaches the end of the extension at high speed, both the dog and the walker are going to feel it.  The walker might be pulled to the ground and across the pavement, experiencing injury. The dog may escape. With a short leash, a dog walker can keep a greyhound from getting those few strides needed to reach full speed.
  5. Likewise, a greyhound (or any other dog) reaching the end of a 25 foot extension at high speed might suffer severe neck injuries, including lacerated tracheas and spinal damage. Again, horrific images are available thanks to Google. 
  6. Retractable leashes allow dogs the ability to pull to the end of the extension. This ability teaches dogs to pull because it is rewarding.  Any proper leash training will be undone. Pulling to the end of the extension can also appear to other dogs as aggression requiring a response.
  7. Retractable leash handles are often bulky and lack an appropriate lanyard. Consequently, a fast moving dog can easily pull the handle out of its walker's hands, resulting in a runaway dog. A runaway dog is bad enough, but if this happens, the dog will be chased by the handle bumping along the ground and making terrifying noises as it zips back up the line.  Dogs are likely to run away faster and may be hit by the handle when the line fully retracts.  The dog may suffer severe physical injuries (struck by a car) and develop permanent phobias of retractable leashes. 
    Houston in a Thunder Leash.
  8. The mechanical parts of the retractable leashes grow old and break over time. They can unexpectedly fail to extend or retract when needed. The button that stops the spool can also break allowing full extension at the worst possible moment.
  9. As Cow Dog demonstrates, the retractable leashes easily wind around obstacles such as other dogs, bicyclists, pedestrians, children, trash cans, trees, or fences. If the retractable leash cord is pulled tightly, it can damage anything in its coil. And the typical dog response when tangled is, of course, to pull harder. A walker may have to disconnect the dog and risk a runaway to prevent injury to a tangled dog or human.  Additionally, trapped or tangled dogs can become aggressive to their humans and other dogs because they are frightened.  A dog that cannot move away because it is tangled might be severely and repeatedly bitten.
  10. Retractable leashes are inconsiderate to everyone else, people and dogs alike, who want to maintain reasonable personal space. A walker needs to be close enough to the dog to ensure that its approaches are desired and safe.

Imagination is really the only limit to the potential horrors of retractable leashes. Please let others in the dog community know of the dangers by sharing this article with them.  You'll see a "Forward to a Friend" button at the end of the newsletter or you can share it from GALT's Tumblr blog.  If you are thinking about replacing a leash, please consider the Thunder Leash used by GALT volunteers to walk our hounds.  It's available in the Greyt Store


Each week, space permitting, we hope to bring you our pick of the great hound photos shared on GALT's social media.  This week we have selected these amazing double decker dogs demonstrating the alignment possible with "greyhound position systems," also known as GPS.  Do your hounds align in similar positions when they sleep?  Send us a picture at
Puzzled when someone asks what you want for a Wedding, Birthday or Anniversary gift because you really don't "need" anything? How about asking for donations to the Greyhound Adoption League of Texas, Inc.? We've just had another couple "register" with us for their Wedding!  To set up your very own Happy Event Registry, contact

Click here to see this new feature.   


No problem!  For $10 you can buy a chance for a $1,000 Visa Gift Card in a Golf Ball Drop that will kick off the tournament!  Numbered golf balls will be dropped out of a helicopter onto a hole on the golf course. If the closest ball to the hole has your number, you win! Need not be present to win.  Purchase golf balls here for $10 each. 

Greyt Non-Event: September 7 ~ 12:00 am - September 8, 12:00am  ~ Anywhere/Everywhere
No volunteer shifts to fill, no having to wish you were there, and no driving in the end-of-summer heat! This event is all about what greyhounds do best - being couch potatoes extraordinaire! Your $25 ticket gets you the following: a guilt-free day of relaxation and an event shirt. Sign up today!

North Texas Giving Day: September 17 ~ 6:00 am - Midnight ~ Online
This is an online giving event that provides folks in North Texas the opportunity to come together to raise money for local nonprofits. Every gift made on September 17th helps our chances of winning prizes ranging from $500 to $10,000!


Strut Your Mutt: September 19 ~ 8:00 am - Noon ~ Mueller Lake Park, Austin/Online

You can strut anywhere and don't need a dog!  The GALT representatives will be stepping out this year in Austin on September 19th in the Best Friends Strut Your Mutt. Please support (or join) our team here

GREYT Golf Tournament: Sept. 22nd ~ 8:30 am ~ Canyon Creek Country Club, Richardson 
Join GALT for a fun day of golf to benefit the hounds! The format includes a shotgun start and 4 player scramble. Cost is $125 for an individual/$500 for a team of four. The entry fee includes: Breakfast & Lunch, Goodie Bag, Range Balls, Greens Fee, Cart Fee, Team Photos, Raffle Prizes and Contests. Prizes will be awarded for 1st and 2nd Place; Longest Drive; Closest to the Pin and for a Hole-in-One - a BMW! Register today

Beer Tasting Contest: October 17 ~ 6:30 - 9:30 pm ~ Club Room, Dallas 
Food at 6:30 pm, first pour is at 7:00 pm. $30/ticket. Raffle tickets are $10 a ticket or 6 tickets for $50. Live auction!

GALT Greyt Dallas Cowboys Ticket Raffle: November 22 ~ 4:00 pm ~ Need not be present
Win 6 tickets to the Thanksgiving Day, November 26th, Cowboys against the Carolina Panthers Game for just $20 per ticket! Only 250 tickets printed!  Winner will be notified and posted on our website.  Get your details and tickets here.


If you have been considering fostering, or know someone who is considering fostering, now would be a great time to jump in! If you can help, please contact Jennifer Vilches at


Peanut, 2-yr-old stray
Merci, 2-mo-old stray
Saturday, August 22, 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Petco Grapevine
1250 William D. Tate Ave. Grapevine, TX  
Saturday, August 22, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Petco Carrollton
2722 N. Josey Lane, Carrollton, TX 
In attendance:  Reba, Shelton, Marian


Bison, aka Zam Bison, July 14, 2004 - August 15, 2015, GALT #611
Beloved and cherished by Roxanne and Russell Jones and family

Annie, fka Raggedy Ann, aka Oh So Raggedy, April 15, 2004 - August 19, 2015, GALT #1524
Beloved and Cherished by Sarah and Will Coulter

If your hound has crossed the Rainbow Bridge, please let us know by sending a note to

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If you have moved or need to update your contact information since you adopted your GALT greyhound, please email
Greyhound Adoption League of Texas, Inc.
3400 Carlisle St #310, Dallas, Texas 75204