Labrador Retriever crossbreeds are becoming more and more popular among dog lovers the world over. They were once considered the product of random encounters. Today these “designer” Labrador mixes are the result of the planned crossing of a Lab and a purebred dog.
The Greyhounds and Labradors are wonderful, even though quite different dogs. So, what happens if you mix these two breeds? The Greyhound and Labrador mix is often called the “Greyador”. They are also called Greyhound Labs or Lurchers. It is a great mixed breed dog for admirers of the Labradogood-natured personality and Greyhound’s elegant looks. The idea of a Greyhound Lab mix sounds a little comical at first, but it is actually an interesting hybrid dog.
You may have seen some great pictures of Greyhound Labrador mix dogs on websites, Instagram, etc. Many owners love to share photos of their dogs. Dog lovers are intrigued by the graceful and friendly Greyhound Lab mix. The Greyhound Labrador mix is becoming popular day by day because of its outstanding qualities.
Origin and History of Greyhound Dogs
The Greyhound is an ancient breed dog that is part of the Sighthound breed group. It was developed centuries ago to help hunters in spotting small game animals, like rabbits, and then to chase them down at a high speed.
Exactly when and how they became distinct from other sighthound breeds is still not certain. But they were already long-established by the time registries for breeds became fashionable in the nineteenth century.
The body of the Greyhound is aerodynamic and built for speed. Its long, slim head, deep chest, and narrow waist are like those of a long-distance runner. It is still often used in the controversial sport of dog raising.
The typical personality of a Greyhound is sweet and gentle. It has a bit of an independent streak and a very high drive for its prey. A calm and quiet dog, they are wonderful canine companions. The Greyhound breed was officially accepted in 1885 by the American Kennel Club. In fact, they were among the first cohort of 14 breeds which were recognized by the American Kennel Club when it was formed in 1884.
Origin and History of Labrador Dogs
The Labrador has been ranked number one in popularity in the U.S. among dog owners for the past 26 years. It is believed to have originated from Newfoundland a province of Canada. Originally called the St.John’s dog from its place of origin which happens to be the main city in Newfoundland.
Labrador was first bred to be a working dog for coastal fishermen. It is a retriever dog and belongs to the sporting group of dog breeds. The Lab’s affinity to water and obedient temperament made it a suitable retriever of waterfowls brought down by hunters.
Traveling noblemen brought Labrador’s ancestors to Britain where they continued to refine this breed. The American Kennel Club officially recognized this breed in 1917.
The Labrador’s energetic, friendly and outgoing nature makes it very popular for families as well as active singles. It is not only a popular family pet but also a sought-after search and rescue dog. The Labrador is also used as a service dog for people with disabilities and a great therapy support animal as well.
Origin and History of Greyhound Labrador Mixed Dogs
The history of the Greyhound Labrador mix is not well documented. Probably litters of Greyhound Labrador mix may have cropped up by accident or on purpose since the very beginnings of the parent breeds.
It is important to remember that like all crossbreed dogs, the Greyador can have any aspect of either of its parent breed. The Greyhound and Labrador traits can combine virtually in any mix in a Greyador.
The Greyhound and Labrador mix can actually look and act very differently from one another. It all depends on the traits they inherit from their parents.
Appearance and Size of Greyhound Labrador Mix
When we hear the word Greyador we all probably have the same image in our minds of a stretched out, skinny Labrador. Many fans of the Greyhound Labrador mix wish to get a dog that combines the Labrador’s sturdiness with the Greyhound’s refinement. But there is no such guarantee on the appearance of the Greyador. This is because mixed breeds inherit the physical characteristics of either of their parent breeds.
Some Greyhound Labrador mixes look more like Labradors and some like Greyhounds. The best way to predict is to look at the two parent dogs. Make sure you are happy with any combination of their characteristics.
Often seen with the face of the Greyhound, this mix will have long ears that reach up to the jawline. The eyes will be dark and have an inquisitive look showing his working background. It has a typical long neck and the body, though slender, will have muscle and form. The teeth of the Greyhound Labrador mix will be well defined with a strong jaw. The tail will be narrow or wide but will be often carried high and will become straight when he is excited.
The coat will vary depending on the genetic dominance. Sometimes their coats are solid. It will be short, although the density can vary from dog to dog. The main colors of Greyadors are black, brown, white, tan, fawn, red, silver, blue, and brindle. Sometimes their coats are a blend of colors. While browsing pictures of these mixed breed puppies you will notice a lot of black dogs. This is because black Greyador is especially popular. Greyadors shed a lot and are not a good choice for allergy sufferers. They will need regular brushing daily.
The size of this mixed breed can vary depending on the dominance of the genes. Size ranges for the Greyador could be broad which is typical for mixed breed dogs. The Greyhound Labrador mix dog’s height can vary from 21 – 27 inches. A fully grown Greyador male could weigh between 60-80 pounds and females 55-75 pounds.
Greyhound Labrador Mix Temperament
Just like their appearance, the temperament of all mixed-breed dogs can come in any combination of the traits of its parent breed. Every dog is an individual. Training and socialization play a big role than breeding, in giving you the kind of dog you want.
Greyhounds tend to be somewhat quiet, sensitive, and silent. Labradors have a reputation for being active and friendly. The Greyhound Labrador mix could have the appealing combination of the Labrador’s enthusiasm tempered by the calmness of the Greyhound. At home, Greyadors are most likely to be placid and gentle companions. They are a sweet, loving, and gentle dog.
One important personality trait to be aware of in Greyadors is their strong prey drive. Always keep in mind that your dog’s Greyhound ancestors have that intense prey drive when introducing them into a house with other pets.
Sometimes your pet’s Greyhound blood may also make it a little more sensitive when around boisterous young children. Hence be sure to supervise your dog when they are with children. But generally, you can expect a friendly and non-aggressive dog if proper training is given from an early age.
Other qualities like how outgoing they are, whether they like to play, fetch, etc will all depend on which parent breed’s trait they have taken after. When you bring home a Greyhound Labrador mix puppy, you will not find out until they are mostly grown up.
Greyhound Labrador Mix Training and Exercise
The Labrador and Greyhound are intelligent and athletic dogs. Both these dogs have histories as sporting and working dogs. Their mixed puppies will hence, need plenty of exercises each day, including the time to run off the leash.
The risk of a strong prey instinct that this mixed dog inherits from its Greyhound parent is high. So, you will need to find a safe enclosed area for its exercises. As this crossbreed is a hunting dog it tends to follow its instinct and act upon its immediate impulse, like chasing a squirrel in the park. However, this can be duly overcome by giving it a good training regimen from an early age. Training will offer a small amount of exercise as well as some much needed mental stimulation. If your Greyador inherits its Greyhound’s short attention span then training may be challenging. Try to spend time modifying training techniques depending on which parent the puppy has taken after the most.
Being an intelligent dog, training the Greyador will not be difficult as long as you lead them carefully through the commands. Make sure you do not yell or be very strict with them. Remember to use positive reinforcements and treat rewards.
Since both its parents Greyhound and Labrador are prone to weight gain, it is necessary to follow regular exercises when training your Greyador. Exercise is a great help to keep the Greyhound Labrador mix in good shape. A walk down the park or a good playtime in the yard will work great. About sixty minutes of activity will be sufficient. They generally need short intense exercise burst. Also, they would be happy to rest in between these exercises. Just be careful and check your dog’s temperature often to monitor if he is overheating.
Greyhound Labrador mixes like to be busy and will enjoy playing games with his owners. They will most likely love swimming in a lake or river. Greyhounds are lightning-fast dogs. Some Labradors are pretty quick themselves. Hence your Greyador will not be a slow dog. But it is not possible to predict in advance how quickly they will be able to run.
Some Greyadors will be natural-born sprinters but there can be a lot of variation between siblings. They just love to sprint and are the happiest when they get regular chances to run as fast as they can. It is thus safest if you have a large, enclosed space to exercise them. But be sure that you do not over-exercise your dog when they are a puppy to protect their joints.
Greyhound Labrador Mix Socialization
The natural instincts of the Greyhound Labrador mix make it important to socialize its puppy early. From the time you bring your puppy home until the age of sixteen weeks, it is better to introduce them to as many new things as possible.
Anything that your dog may interact with as an adult lets them learn to socialize. This includes people, places, animals, etc. For the puppies, there should be particular emphasis on learning to socialize with small pets and young children.
Socialization from the puppy age reduces aggression and fearfulness in adult dogs of any breed
Greyhound Labrador Mix Health and Care
Mixed breed dogs, on average, live for two years longer than purebred dogs. This is partly because mixed breed dogs are less likely to develop recessive genetic diseases. A healthy Greyador can look forward to a life span of anywhere between 9-13 years.
One of the toughest jobs in caring for any dog is maintaining their oral health. Brush your dog’s teeth a minimum of three times a week. These dogs are highly prone to tartar build-up. Hence everyday brushing is better. Ask your vet how to brush your dog’s teeth properly.
Check their ears for debris and pests every day and clean them as recommended by your vet. Trim their nails before they get too long. They should not be clicking against the floor. If you find your dog dragging their bottom or scooting then they may need to get their anal glands expressed.
Mixed breeds can inherit illness from their parents. Also, some breeds have health issues because of their size, conformation, or pedigree. Veterinary care, exercise, and diet contribute to a Greyador’s health. They may be exposed to health problems of Greyhounds and Labradors but the Greyhound Labrador mix are fortunate that both the parent dogs are relatively healthy breeds.
Some of the common health issues which a Greyhound Labrador mix can develop are :
- Hip and Elbow Dysplasia
- Progressive Renal Atrophy
- Exercise-induced collapse
- Muscle weakness
- Cardiac problems
- Centronuclear Myopathy
- Gastrointestinal Complications
Although nothing is definite Greyador may still develop some health problems at some point in their lifetime. When selecting a breeder ask about the parent dog’s health. Some health issues can be genetically assessed or screened. To make sure that your Greyhound Labrador mix is healthy ensure regular check-ups and testing.
Food Requirements of Greyhound Labrador Mix Dogs
The Greyhound Labrador mix is a relatively medium-sized dog. It can consume about three cups of food per day. It will respond well to food designed for small and large breeds alike.
Look for dry foods that are rich in Omega 3 Fatty Acids, Glucosamine, and meat for strong bones and muscles. This is to prevent complications from suffering from Hip Dysplasia. Your mixed breed tends to overeat. Hence it has a risk of becoming obese which could lead to health issues.
You need to monitor carefully your pet’s calorie intake while feeding him high-quality meat and protein. It is better to practice feeding your dog small, frequent meals instead of one large meal to prevent bloating in the stomach. Try the best dry dog food brands available that will be gentle on your dog’s tummy.
It is better to administer treats and scheduled feeding patterns intertwined with free-feeding at least once a week. The focus of your feeding pattern is to make sure that you do not overfeed your puppy and that is why free-feeding must be followed.
Consult the vet to assess the nutritional needs of your Greyador according to their weight, size, and age. Puppies must be fed only the best puppy food brands and older dogs will benefit from senior dry dog food. The correct amount of mix of vitamins and minerals for your dog must also be consulted with the veterinarian.
Pros and Cons of having a Greyhound Labrador Mix Dog
The Greyhound Labrador mix dog is a great pet for anyone interested in an affectionate, loyal companion. Before you fall in love with this crossbreed puppy make sure you know all about it. Their sweet and tolerant behavior would make it an excellent family member. But just like all dogs the Greyadors also have their positive and negative sides some of which are listed below:
- Every puppy is unique
- Usually have a wonderfully gentle, friendly temperament. Unlike most of the ill-tempered predators, the Greyhound Labrador cross is able to recognize friends and strangers who are close to the family.
- They are active dogs as they come from a family of predators and hunters. That is why this crossbreed makes for a genuinely enthusiastic dog.
- They love fun activities and sprinting across. Because of this, the owner is also invited to a good workout and exercise for healthier living.
- Greyadors are sweet and gentle towards their family, especially in times you most expect them to be. They will make you feel loved just as it feels your love.
- This crossbreed is utterly caring, compassionate, and clingy.
- They are very easy to train.
- They have a relatively long average life expectancy.
- Difficult to predict appearance and temperament
- They have an unpredictable impulse since the independent side of its Greyhound parent manifests in the puppy to wander about. Careful vigilance and observation are necessary while strolling in the park or doing outdoor activities.
- Strong prey drive
- Above-average shedder – They tend to shed frequently which they have inherited from their shedder Labrador parent. Their hair may get stuck in basic house furniture such as sofa, carpet, and rugs. Regular cleaning and vacuuming should be done every week.
- They are prone to inherited diseases just like most crossbreeds. The Greyhound Labrador mix has proved to be more susceptible than others.
- It is difficult to find this mixed breed in rescue or shelter homes and by reputable breeders.
The popularity of the Greyhound Labrador mix is due to its friendliness and intelligence. Dog owners should know at least the basic of tending and taking care of pups. They should be able to recognize that crossbreeds inherit the good and bad from both its dog parents.
Crossbreeds could inherit health problems from their purebred parents. So proper measures should be taken to ensure that your puppy has been checked and proper medication has been given. Before you bring home your puppy ensure that all his medical records are proper.
Greyador is an excellent option for a family dog. They are fun to be with and are friendly and affectionate. All you need is a big fenced yard to let him play. So if you are ready for a Greyhound Labrador mix then first search online for a reputed breeder. See that all the documentation is intact before you adopt them.
Puppies are precious and have a lot of energy in them! And if the pup is a mix of a Labrador then there is no looking back. You will need a lot of patience but then at the end of the day, you will definitely enjoy his company!