About the shelter
Based in Belrose West, Sydney, the Greyhound Adoption Program Inc (GAP NSW) is a non-profit organisation incorporated with the NSW Department of Fair Trading. GAP NSW is completely independent financially and has been run by volunteers since 1998. It is a charity that relies on memberships and donations for funding. The group is dedicated to the welfare of Greyhounds and does not accept industry funds from Greyhound racing. GAP NSW is run by an eight-member strong management committee made up of individuals elected every year from the group’s membership base.
Dedicated members of the group and their supporters believe that contrary to its negative image, Greyhounds are clean, delightful dogs that enjoy nothing more than finding the most comfortable spot in the house and taking a snooze. Though mainly used as racing dogs, Greyhounds actually don’t require a lot of exercise and tend to have fewer inherited diseases compared to other breeds. GAP NSW believes that Greyhounds are suitable for a range of family situations and can be very gentle with children. Hounds that enter GAP NSW’s adoption program are temporarily placed in foster care for a minimum of three to four weeks. That way, the dog can be exposed to a variety of experiences inside and outside a home. Each dog’s progress is monitored carefully by its foster carer and its suitability for rehousing is assessed continuously within this period.
When a Greyhound has passed its evaluation period, the dog will then be desexed, microchipped, vaccinated, and tested for heartworm. After recovering from surgery, the hound will then be ready for adoption. All potential adopters will need to fill out an adoption application form which includes providing information regarding the potential adopter’s lifestyle, family, yard, fencing, and presence of other pets. Approved applications go on a waiting list for a Greyhound with some wait times taking as long as six months.
Though on the lookout for foster carers, GAP NSW’s foster care program requires that potential foster carers be experienced around dogs for a number of years and have good dog handling and training skills, as well as knowledge of canine behaviour as former race hounds need to be taught a number of essential things such as toilet training, household noises, being alone, and other house-related realities.
- GAP NSW’s primary purpose is to educate the public about the benefits of having Greyhounds as companion animals, as well as to find loving, permanent homes for as many hounds as possible.
- In addition, GAP NSW aims to promote and improve the public image of the Greyhound, working toward debunking current misconceptions about the breed, repealing muzzling laws across Australia, and encouraging improvements in Greyhound welfare standards.
How you can help
Love Greyhounds? Think of becoming a member! GAP NSW has three categories of membership: Full, Associate, and Corporate. All membership fees help in covering the organisation’s administrative costs and come with a copy of their quarterly journal “Homeward Bound” as well as discounts on merchandise.
The organisation holds and attends many promotional displays and fun events throughout the year as part of educating the public about the breed. Volunteers are more than welcome to assist in these events by attending events with their dogs or helping promote the cause through public education. GAP NSW holds an annual Picnic Day which serves as a reunion where adoptive families and their Greyhounds can get together, exchange stories and tips, rekindle old friendships, as well as make new friends.