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Greyhounds at the Dona Ana Renaissance Artsfaire

Friday, November 09, 2012

Our non-profit, Greyhounds of Fairhaven, recently promoted the adoption of retired racing greyhounds at the Dona Ana Renaissance Artsfaire in Las Cruces, New Mexico. What, you may ask, does promoting greyhound adoption have to do with SparkPeople and getting fit/healthy? Let's see... unloading 8,000 pounds of gear, setting up camp, putting together real wooden furniture, walking the hounds around the fairgrounds... yeah, I burned some calories! Plus, it is a huge benefit to my mental health to spend several days surrounded by sweet, mellow greyhounds.

Here are some photos of our event.

These two are best friends. My little girl, Jade, on the left, and great big boy, Loki, on the right. They're a good example in the diversity of size in this breed. Jade weighs in around 57-58 pounds, and Loki is just a tad under 90 pounds.

Since our goal is to introduce the hounds to as many people as possible, I love this photo showing our busy booth (tent? encampment?):

We love that we're able to do the hunting demo at this faire, as they have a large grassy field for us to run the hounds. The following several photos are from the demo:

Darla, waiting to be released for her run.

Darla, jumping in her effort to catch the lure (bunny skins tied to a rope).

Darla, running after the lure.

She's not my girl, though I've at times wished she was! Darla is a beauty and a cutie all wrapped up in one. :D

This photo is my girl Jade, and me. She's waiting to be released for her turn to run.

I laugh when people lament about racing, "I hate the way they make those dogs run." You can't. You simply cannot make a greyhound run. This photo is Loki and Rio, whom we released simultaneously, hoping they might spur one another to run. No. They just stood there, took one or two steps and totally ignored the lure!

On to other parts of our event:

Gemma, in one of my absolute favorite photos of the event. I *LOVE* her cute smile!

Here's one of Gemma right-side-up. ;)

Our only non-retired racer. Guillermo is a Spanish Greyhound, aka Galgo. In Spain, greyhounds (galgos) are used for hunting, not racing. And yes, he is 100% greyhound. In Spain, around 1/3 of greyhounds have the fuzzy coat like his.

A close-up of Guillermo's cute face.

Nisha (short for Vonisha). People say, "Oh, she must be so old!" No, she's only four years old. Many greyhounds turn quite gray-faced at a young age. Not all do, though it is quite common.

This next photo of Nod just makes me laugh:

"Warning: Ears may appear larger than real life."

These are my two: Rio is the black in front, and Jade the black brindle.

As I mentioned early on, spending several days sur-hounded by these loving fur-babies is great mental health. I love getting the time to cuddle my two girls and Jade is incredibly, kissably soft!

Feeding time! We built a small pen for off-lead time. During transportation, the pen comes apart and goes into our trailer. Takes up a space 8 long, about 1.5 feet deep, and less than 4 feet high. All our gear is as authentic as possible. The wooden furniture stores flat and goes together quickly with large wooden pegs.
That is one of the reasons it is a workout getting set up, then tearing down. Hefting the real wooden furniture, wooden storage boxes and chests in and out of the trailer is definitely a workout!

All in, we had a marvelous trip. We had the opportunity to showcase the retired racing greyhounds to several thousand people, collected a fair amount of donations, and enjoyed ourselves!

Many thanks to my good friend, Matt Wilkens, who provided most of these photos. To see all the photos from our event (and from other events), you can visit our facebook page at:
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