Jed's story.

Jed was the latest addition to our family of Greyhounds. He made the number up to 7 again after the loss of our lovely Oscar on 25th February 2002. We also had a small Jack Russell type mongrel so that made a nice family of 8 dogs.

Jed had been a winner in his early life. We knew that because when his "owner" asked us to come and collect Jed and take him into our animal sanctuary, he gave us Jed's racing and ID card. From this we could see that he had been born in Ireland on 19th July 1990. He raced in Cork and Dungannon and soon he had a series of wins, both at trials and actual races. As time passed he started to come in 4th and then 6th. Obviously that wasn't what he had been bred for and somehow Jed found himself in a small town in the North of England. We don't know what happened after that because there are no entries on his card at tracks in England. I suspect that he must have been racing on what's known as flapping tracks. These are not controlled by the National Greyhound Racing Club and conditions for the dogs can be very poor. If Jed was used on one of these tracks there would be no entries on his card.

The first time I met Jed was in 1995 when his owner in England rang the animal sanctuary where my wife and I are trustees and asked if we could take in a fawn male Greyhound. I went to pick Jed up and he gave me a big grin for which he soon earned his nickname of the laughing Greyhound. Whenever someone went up to his pen he used to curl his lip and simply smile at them, rubbing the side of his head on the wires so that they could tickle his chin. On reflection, I wish so much that we had taken him home right then instead of taking him into the sanctuary, but at that time we had 11 dogs here at home with us, 10 Greys and Lurchers and the small mongrel, I just wish we had made room for Jed as well.

I can't recall exact dates but after staying at the sanctuary for probably about a year, someone wanted to take Jed home. We do homechecks before a dog is allowed to be adopted and everything seemed fine at Jed's potential new home so off he went. The staff and trustees were very pleased because they all knew and loved Jed and were happy because he had at last got the home that he deserved.

One day, about 2 years later I was at the sanctuary and I saw a Greyhound that looked just like Jed. As soon as I approached his kennel he started to smile, I couldn't believe it, Jed was back. I made enquires but I am sorry to have to say that I can't remember anything about why he had been returned. To be truthful, I wasn't really interested, whatever the reason it wasn't worth listening to, I vaguely recollect that it was something about him weeing in the house. I do remember that I was totally and utterly disgusted and I began to have serious doubts about the validity of our homechecking policy.

Time passed. Every day people came looking for a pet dog, no one wanted Jed. He came out of his kennel and smiled at them, rubbing his face on the wires of his prison, they walked right past him, further down the row there was a prettier dog, maybe they would adopt that one. One day a man came and saw Jed. He knew instantly that Jed was the dog for him. The sanctuary arranged a homecheck and this time Marilyn and I did it ourselves. He was perfect for Jed. An enclosed garden where Jed could run around and he seemed to really want Jed and to take him home as soon as possible. Jed went to his perfect home and we were all so happy for him.

In 2001 Jed was back. They were moving to a smaller house, there was no room for him and besides, he had started weeing in the house. This time he was clearly unhappy, he began to lose weight and he became very lethargic. The vet did some tests but couldn't find anything clinically wrong. They moved him into the "old woofs" building. Jed was 11 years old now so he qualified for admittance. This is a building where the older dogs go and where they get an extra treat now and then. With all the attention he seemed to improve and regain weight, but he was clearly unhappy. Marilyn and I had just lost our Oscar and we realised at long last that Jed belonged with us. We took him home on 31st March 2002. He fitted in right away. No problems accepting all our other dogs, (even the Jack Russell), and everything was set for Jed to live happily ever after.

On 9th August 2002 Jed was clearly unwell. His urine was almost purely blood and he was very lethargic. The vet thought it might be an infection and gave him antibiotics and anti-inflammatories. On 12th August our beloved Jed died. He had been at the vet's surgery since the morning for blood tests and x-rays. At about 1pm the vet rang us, he had discovered lots of small tumours on Jed's liver. After a long discussion with the vet we knew we had to let Jed go whilst he was under the anaesthetic, if he woke up he would have only about a week to live and his quality of life would be non-existent.

There have been lots of mistakes along the way in Jed's life. I feel that he has been let down by us. Marilyn and I have vast experience in this field but this last guy fooled even us. By the way, in the five months that we were privileged to have Jed, he never once urinated in the house, not even at the end when he was very sick.

Please look at some of the pictures of Jed by clicking on the link below.

Jed's pictures. I'm going with you. Jed on the bed. Jed on the settee. Jed and Copper. Jed roaching. Jed the ambassador. Jed's birthday card.