When I first started in greyhounds in 1985, the thing I needed most was a comprehensive resource to give me information about the breed. There were a few GCA pamphlets, an obedience book called “Play Training Your Dog” by Gail Burnham, a few children’s books, and later I found some antique coursing books. There were articles to be gleaned from various magazines as well, but I was always on the hunt for things to read. The Greyhound Club of America also noticed this paucity of new literature dedicated to the American greyhound and set about to rectify the problem. A publication committee was formed with Sue Lackey as its chair and included our own AKC President, Dennis Sprung. The club archivist, Laurel Drew supplied much historical information as well as writing the historical notes in the beginning of the book.
“Greyhounds in America”, Volume 1 was born in 1989 after two years of tireless work; collecting information on top kennels, top dogs, beautiful artwork, and knowledgeable handler and judge interviews GIA was written and compiled by Ms. Lackey with a goal of covering 200 years of the Greyhound’s presence in America. The first time greyhounds were used on the continent for hunting to the elegant Greyhound Club of America Specialties are discussed and shown pictorially. Advertising was solicited from the current greyhound owners and breeders to help underwrite the cost of the book so the more recent past is also represented. The book also covers important information on breed standards, breeding, maintaining stud dogs, the influence of English and Scandinavian kennels on American breeding programs, coursing and many other topics.
Many of the unique qualities and subtilies of this breed were explained to me through the pages of this book. Studying the photos and referring to the standard can illuminate many of the fine points. As Sue Lackey suggested in her preface, the breed has remained unchanged over the years thanks to the breeders that have stayed true to our standard and the function of these dogs. As one studies the photos of the past and the present, a greyhound looks like a greyhound. Some are better than others, but there is no breed in which this is not true!
The clarity of the hundreds of photos reprinted in the book make this book irreplaceable in my collection. This is a beautiful hard covered book with the logo of the Greyhound Club of America embossed on the cover and was first published with 500 copies. These books sold out quickly through 1989 and 1990 and as the years past, the few the club had in reserve were auctioned at Specialties. The book was reprinted and there continues to be a supply available through the club. This is a book that is a necessity for the Greyhound fancier, breeder, and judge.
“Greyhounds in America”, reprinted, is available through the GCA website at a very reasonable rate. If you do not own this book and you have an interest in this breed I suggest you take a look.