As anticipated in my December Metro article ("Ten reasons it’s a wonderful life in Wolseley"), a retired racing greyhound has joined the neighbourhood to live with my husband and me.
I fell for greys back in September when writing an article for The Metro about Wolseley’s fleet-footed canine cousins, the retired racers Millie and Romy.
The new boy in town is Styxx, short for his professional name, Firestyxx.
His racing records and lineage, though, can’t be researched, as with National Greyhound Association athletes. This is because Styxx ran in an American jurisdiction where dog racing isn’t regulated.
In September, his owner dumped him at a Detroit animal shelter declaring: "he’s too old."
Too old, perhaps, to continue making that shady character more money than his keep. At an estimated six years old, Styxx gave his keeper a full career. He’s still healthy, with strong pearly teeth. And a zeal for life. And, for some reason, an abiding love for people.
Styxx was transferred from the original shelter to Detroit’s Serenity Animal Hospital, which has its own sophisticated pet rescue service. There it was documented that "...he appears to have been a dog that lived outside most of the time, but is house-trained."
It was also observed: "Because of his rescue being last minute, he had to ride shotgun in my passenger seat and was fine with my co-pilot Mattie — a shih tzu/poodle. He is very interested in cats, so I would have to label him cat-curious."
From Detroit, Styxx took an arduous route to Canada (it’s so much easier to just cross the bridge at Windsor). He went to an Ohio dog rescue where, as is usual for retired greyhounds, he was neutered. (Responsible, yes, but stressful while in transit!)
It’s now October. Enter Winnipeg-based Hi-Speed Hounds Greyhound Rescue & Adoption Inc. The local non-profit organization brought Styxx, and two friends from Ohio, through Pembina, to Manitoba.
Until we welcomed Styxx to Wolseley on Dec. 13, he was loved and introduced to home life — stairs, hardwood floors, windows and mirrors — by the Lambert family of Island Lakes. They foster for Hi-Speed Hounds. The family includes a cat, Pekinese, husky and greyhound.
Already we know Styxx exemplifies the sweet sensitivity, intelligence and grace of the best of dogs.
As for the many people who made the effort to bring him home to us (shady character excluded), they, too, embody the very best.
Gail Perry is a community correspondent for Wolseley.