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    Hopkinton greyhound shelter saves other breeds, too

        By Laura Krantz/Daily News staff GateHouse News Service Posted Mar 17, 2013 @ 11:47 PM Last update Mar 18, 2013 @ 07:11 PM                                                                                          HOPKINTON —

    It can be hard to say no to a wagging tale and a slobbery mouth that just wants love.

    That's part of the reason Greyhound Friends, Inc., a non-profit on Saddle Hill Road, has begun accepting other breeds of homeless dogs, too.

    "Basically what we’re doing is saving dogs’ lives," Director Louise Coleman said Friday.

    For nearly 30 years the local organization has paid to transport greyhounds from the South and Midwest to Massachusetts. The facility spays or neuters dogs, gives them medical care and finds new owners.

    As greyhound racing has declined in the South, the organization in the past year began accepting other breeds, still mostly from the southern states.

    Many dogs come from economically depressed areas where owners lose jobs and homes and give their dogs to shelters, she explained. Dog pounds in the South, where far fewer animals are spayed or neutered, often turn into "kill shelters" when they get too full.

    But that's not the case at Greyhound Friends, Inc., which keeps no more than 30 dogs at a time. One dog there now is Duke, a 2-year-old shepherd mix who was lucky enough to get an extra walk in the yard Friday.

    "He’s got a big head but he’s got a big heart, too," said Jon Servello as he held Duke's leash. Servello has worked at Greyhound Friends less than a year ago and already owns one dog.

    Coleman said the shelter has taken in and sent out between 250 and 300 mixed breeds since it began accepting other breeds 18 months ago. They still focus primarily on greyhounds, moving about 300 through their facility every year, she said.

    Coleman said staff work carefully to match dogs, which each cost $250, with appropirate owners.

    "It’s like a constellation. You’re putting another member into the constellation," she said.


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    Re: Hopkinton greyhound shelter saves other breeds, too

    Greyhound Friends continues to receive greyhounds on a regular basis from Florida. All these greyhounds are wonderful and so deserve a chance for a loving, permanent home. Each has their own, individual personality - some serious and quiet, others playful and energetic. It's amazing to watch them settle in and show us what they're like.    Your donations help us transport and care for each shipment of greyhounds. Since most of our greyhounds come from Florida now, Greyhound Friends pays for their transport to Massachusetts. Once they arrive, they go into our isolation unit for the required 48 hours. At the end of their isolation term, we pay for a vet to exam them before we place them into our regular adoption kennel.  We also generally complete the dogs' vet care, handle the spay/neuter as well as dentals, etc.  These expenses incurred from bringing greyhounds in from Florida (and any other states) are additional to the 'normal' expenses of keeping our kennel running.   Donations can be made via the online store, via Paypal, or by mailing a check to 167 Saddle Hill Rd., Hopkinton, MA.   If you have questions about the transport/isolation procedures or about any part of our greyhound care, please feel free to email us at ghfriend @ greyhound.org or call and talk with Louise at 508-435-5969.   Everyone is welcome to visit the kennel and the greyhounds at any time! We're open every day from 9:00-5:00, but the best time to visit is mid-morning through mid-afternoon.   Thanks for thinking of us and our greyhounds.