The 45 mph Couch Potato

They’re known as 45 mph coach potatoes, but there are a few other interesting aspects to the fabulous Greyhound that you might not know:

**Recent research has shown that Greyhounds don’t metabolize drugs as other dogs do;

**They (and other sighthounds except Irish Wolfhounds) typically have high blood pressure;

**Greyhounds have a very large left ventricle (cardiac chamber that pumps blood to the body) needed to pump highly viscous blood though the contracting muscles during exercise;

**Low T4 concentrations are present in young, pre-training Greyhounds, and they persist into adulthood, independently of whether they race or not;

**Greyhounds have unique blood types, and between 50 and 70% of Greyhounds are “universal” blood donors (negative for DEA 1.1, 1.2, and 7), compared to <20% for most other breeds; When using only the typing card for DEA 1.1, 87% of Greyhounds would qualify as blood donors, compared to <40% for other dog breeds;

**The results of venous or arterial blood gas analysis and cooximetry in Greyhounds yields results outside the reference range for dogs;

**Serum calcium (both total and ionized) and magnesium are lower in Greyhounds than in non-Greyhounds;

**In Greyhounds, the serum creatinine (marker of kidney function) concentrations are high (1-2.2 mg/dL), and the total serum protein (5-6 gm/dL) and globulin (1.8-2.5 gm/dL) concentrations are lower than in other dogs;

And you thought they were just fast and gorgeous.

“Big Boy” by Sandra Flood

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