Tracing your Greyhound's Racing Lineage
Step One -- Determine their Track name
The first step is to locate and read the tattoos in his/her ears or get that information from the FastFriends paperwork you received when you adopted your greyhound. If the tattoos are very hard to read, it helps to shine a flashlight beam through the ear to illuminate the digits. If your greyhound was registered in the U.S., the left ear should contain a 5-digit litter registration number. The right ear will have 2 or 3 numbers and a letter. The first number (s) identifies the month they were whelped, and the last number is the year of birth. The letter is an identifier as to the order they were tattooed in the litter (not necessarily the birth order). For example, 78B would be July 2008 and “B” would be the second dog tattooed. 111G would be November 2011 and “G” would be the seventh dog tattooed. Please note that if your greyhound’s tattoos are hard to read, then FastFriends volunteers were also challenged in reading them, so there may be errors on the paperwork.
Once you have the tattoos, go to Greyhound-Data and search by “Tattoo”. Start by typing only the left ear number since much of the right ear information does not seem to be in the database. Here is where some detective work and luck is involved. If your greyhound is in this database by the litter number, then you will get a list of your dog and its littermates. Check through the list for a dog that matches your dog’s color and sex. Once you find the dog that seems like the right one, check the “Races” and see if it matches. One indication may be that it recently (in the last 3 or 4 months) raced at Caliente or in Arizona. We have noted that sometimes there is a long delay between the last race and our Retirement Day. In some cases the greyhound may have been in the pet kennel or may have been held back in the racing kennels, but not raced.
If you have followed the above steps and cannot find your greyhound, then the next step is to contact the National Greyhound Association (NGA) as they have the master greyhound racing database. You can e-mail them at firstname.lastname@example.org or call them at (785) 263-4660. Please note they are the national racing organization and they check their databases for adopters as a courtesy. Please use the service only after you have tried out your own detective skills.
Finally, sometimes the tattoos are just too hard to read or have been marked over and you simply cannot find their lost track name and history. When this happens it is unfortunate but remind yourself that you have a beautiful companion who adores you and it probably really does not matter what they were called in a prior life.
Step Two – Find them in the database
After you have located their track name, go to Greyhound-Data and use the “Dog-Search” feature. If all goes well, you can find their pedigree and race record. You may also be able to figure out what state your greyhound came from by researching the tracks that they raced. Also, check out the littermates and the parents, especially where the Dam came from.
Many racing records are also available from TrackInfo.com and enter your dog's racing name.
Step Three – Add you greyhound’s post retirement information and picture
Go to the database at Greyhound-Dataand use the “Login” feature to set up an account and password. When you create your account, you have to wait for them to send you an email. The email will have an account activation link. You will not be able to log in until you receive this email and activate your account. After the set up is complete, log in and search for your greyhound using the “Dog-Search” feature. Then go to “edit_this_dog” and add what comments you wish, such as his/her adoption name, location, temperament, etc. Also, you can add the right tattoo information. If you add your email address, for safety it does not display on the website, but will allow others to communicate with you, such as someone looking for littermates. Next, you can add pictures of your greyhound. Select “add picture” which is located above the track name, where the picture will be displayed. Follow the directions and add up to three if you desire. Once you've added the first picture, the "add picture" link disappears. To add more pictures, you have to double-click on the picture that is already there to return to the add picture function. Follow the directions and add up to three. If you add more than one picture, they will rotate within a few seconds. For an example of how this works, do a “Dog-Search” of Bacs Mc Babe or Koko Beware. Log off and you have a permanent record of your adopted greyhound on Greyhound-Data.com.
When you are working your way through the Database, you will notice some search hints and wild cards that are available to help you search. I have not repeated them here since they are written up in the database and they also seem to get enhanced from time to time. Also when you get a chance, read through the “About Us” section. It is interesting to see how international this database is. If you have questions about these directions or need more help, you can contact us.