Discovering Your Greyhound’s Heritage
For a greyhound to race in the United States, it must be registered with the National Greyhound Association (NGA). When a greyhound is an older puppy,it is tattooed on the inside of both ears. The right ear tattoo represents the birth month and year. The letter following the date represents the tattoo order of the dog. This does not represent the order in which the greyhound was born, contrary to popular belief. For example, to determine the tattoo, 70A means the greyhound was born in July of 2000 and the “A” represents that he was the first dog of that litter to be tattooed. The left ear is the litter registration number. This registration number has been critical in identifying lost greyhounds. Logan, the greyhound in my first book, was identified as the greyhound we were looking for by confirming his registration number. His collar had been removed through his transit from being lost and found. It was the registration number that positively identified him.
To find your greyhound’s lineage and racing history, you can access the U.S. website, www.greyhound-data.com. This website allows you to enter the right and left tattoo numbers to find your greyhound’s history. You can also locate your greyhound’s lineage by knowing his racing name. The details provide his pedigree and who his parents, grandparents and great grandparents were. You can also see his siblings. There is a link to the racing history of your greyhound and to that of his ancestors.
Logan’s heritage (the character in Logan’s Secret) goes back to 1780 on this mother’s side. From the records online, it appears that his ancestors moved from the UK to Ireland to Australia, back to the UK, then on to the US. That is quite a history for a dog! One of my greyhounds, Dale, was discovered to be of Irish decent, which may explain his extraordinary size – 95 lbs. I found that one of my other greyhounds raced in Mexico, while others raced in various parts of the United States before coming to Texas to be adopted. Racing greyhounds have been around the country more than some of their human owners, so they are true travelers!
If your greyhound’s right ear tattoo is difficult to read, you can contact the NGA in Abilene, Kansas at 785-263-4660 to help unravel the mystery of your greyhound. I did this for one of my greyhounds and was met with a very kind representative to help me. The uniqueness of your greyhound’s color, sex, birth tattoo and possible registration number combinations help to unravel the mystery. Once you obtain the positive identity, you can then go to www.greyhound-data.com to find out more about your greyhound’s history. This is a fun exercise for you and your children to share. Our upcoming book, Logan’s Legacy, helps children to learn more about their greyhound’s heritage and teaches children how to discover their own heritage.