It Ain’t Easy Being Cheesy!

What’s In A Name?

One aspect of fostering and adopting greyhounds and befriending so many folks that have greys, is sharing all of the colorful names we’ve all encountered in our time with the breed. Don’t get me wrong, I know first hand that people have been naming their pets unique and interesting names for years and that it’s not solely greyhounds that get the honor. A few memorable pet names from my upbringing included a sheepdog named Hubert, a black cocker spaniel named Char (short for charcoal) and more recently, my cousin’s cat whom he named “Poo-Poo”.

On our blog we’ve told stories about grey’s named Chubby, Mookie, Money, and our very own infamous Six Pack. And because I don’t want her to feel left out, it’s worth noting Callie’s racing name was Sultry Allure (I know, very ooh lala).  Apparently, during her transition from the track to the farm in Iowa, her paperwork was lost and we never knew her kennel name.  When she arrived at our home she was simply being called “Allie.” Since we didn’t think my lovely sister would appreciate us naming our first dog after her (you are welcome Allison), we decided on Callie.

Renaming your greyhound isn’t uncommon in greyhound circles. Often, people will shorten a racing name or modify the spelling to accommodate a personality trait or physical feature. I don’t have the heart to tell all of the beer lovers we encounter at Metazoa Meet and Greets that Six Pack is actually short for Abs Six Pack. So imagine my excitement when Erin told me that we would be receiving a female grey to foster, who was arriving on her second birthday, had what was described as a “funky” toe, and was named Cheetoe!

Cheeto, on the left, introducing herself to Gillian and Ziggy at the drop

Cheeto, with the red tag, meeting our Callie for the first time.











Because of the spelling of her name we assumed the toe issue was a long standing birth defect and not just a coincidence. We really don’t know exactly what happened. But to be honest, as humorous as the spelling of her name in reference to her funny paw is, I’m a huge fan of the decision to have her name shortened to Cheeto. Who doesn’t remember Chester Cheetah the sly, smooth talking Cheeto mascot? I’d say our Cheeto could give Chester a run for his money in a fictional race, but cheetahs are one of the few land animals faster than greyhounds.

Fight Or Flight

As strange as it may sound, there are a couple of parenting techniques that we’ve used when fostering both children and greyhounds – especially when it comes to the first couple of days of welcoming a foster child or grey. We try to ensure things like their comfort and safety, to begin building trust with them, and to limit the amount of stress the situation has brought.  And as loud and excitable as our household can be, I’d like to think we’ve done a pretty good job of providing a low stress environment for our fosters.

Can you remember the last time a situation you were in elicited a physical stress response? Ours may have been after the car crash last fall. It was called “Fight, Flight, Curse, and Smash” in that instant. Unfortunately, for Cheeto, hers was this past Saturday. Fortunately for Cheeto, because of some quick thinking Prison Greyhounds volunteers (including Erin) and Broad Ripple Animal Clinic, the sweet girl has been in the relaxation response ever since.

Relaxation Cheeto Style = a bed to see foster mom and dad and a squeaky!

From 108 To Feeling Greyt!

Before arriving at PetPeople to give baths to all of the New Dog Day arrivals, Cheeto didn’t seem very impressed with Indiana’s weather. She had shown signs of being a little cold and was reluctant to drink any water or go to the bathroom.

Cheeto was a little chilly at the drop, so we warmed her up in the car to make her more comfortable.

Shortly after having her nails trimmed she began intensely shaking and promptly sat down on the ground, a dangerous sign she may have a fever. Thankfully, the Prison Greyhounds volunteer who had just trimmed her nails is also a pet-thermometer-carrying vet technician. Her initial temperature of 103° was worrisome, so we moved her into one of the bath bays and began cooling her stomach and arm pits in an attempt to calm poor Cheeto.

After a second measurement of 104° indicated her fever was rising after being doused in cool water, we all decided that I should rush her to the closest vet that could treat her ASAP!

After the car ride to the vet, Cheeto wasn’t shaking anymore. But she was still visibly upset.

I scooped her up, carried her into Broad Ripple Animal Clinic, where after a 108° temperature reading, they placed several cooling packs on her, laid her in front of a fan, and dosed her with a sedative to calm her. At that point, Erin, Cheeto, and myself were all ready for a nap!

Eventually her temperature dropped and the veterinarian allowed us to pick her up that afternoon to recuperate at our home. There’s something about an animal that isn’t feeling well and is under medication that just makes a person even more compassionate to them.  Thankfully Six Pack and Callie agreed and didn’t bother her too much as she spent the rest of the weekend laying around the house.

Cheeto was pretty wiped out after the whole ordeal. But lots of love and affection helped put her at ease.

Feeling much better!

Nothing “Toe” Worry About

We had a scheduled visit to Dr. Carter’s office on that following Monday to have him take a look at Cheeto’s toe and to schedule her spay and dental.

Cheeto was so happy Dr. Carter didn’t need to perform surgery on her toe, she wanted to give him a kiss!

The appointment also gave us an opportunity to confirm what we had been hoping for two days. She was getting back to her normal self. Or at least as normal as a greyhound gets! We had a feeling that she was starting to feel better Sunday afternoon when her excitement over seeing Erin return from the Metazoa Meet and Greet was visible in her ear to ear smile. If you’ve never seen the greyhound smile, it can appear a little menacing, as our DCS case manager can vouch. Ms. Rebecca had stopped by on Tuesday for our annual DCS foster re-certification interview and home inspection. As we attempted to corral all of the dogs into Erin’s office, Cheeto broke free and ran full smile ahead to introduce herself to Ms. Rebecca. And don’t worry folks, she didn’t revoke our license for having a ravenous animal in our home after we explained the ferocious greyhound smile.

This smiling face greets me at the door everyday when I get home from work.




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