For some, buying a greyhound at a Sale or Auction is nearly as exciting as winning a race.
The average price of a greyhound pup at 6 months of age is around $4,000 but that can vary from as little as $1,000 to in excess of $30,000 (the sales topper at the 2019 Gold Muzzle Puupy Sale was $32,000) .
Champions can come from any bloodline and although the old adage of 'breed from the best, to the best' can ensure you eliminate a number of pitfalls, it is still no guarantee of success.
Sales for 'Ready-to-Race' greyhounds provide more certainty as you know what you are buying but be prepared to pay a premium - no one will sell you a fast dog for a small price.
Buying a Pup at one of our Gold Muzzle Sales will enable you to have an affordable entry point into the industry and who knows, you may end up with a greyhound like Flying Ricciardo who was purchased at the 2019 Gold Muzzle Puppy Auction for just $7,500 and has already won more than $224,000 in prizemoney including the G1 Megastar.
Will my greyhound win Races?
The first thing to tell you about buying a greyhound puppy is that it is a bit like buying a ticket in Lotto.
If your numbers come up you could be a millionaire, and with the massive amount of money on offer in Australian greyhound racing, the same can be said if you're lucky enough to strike gold and end up with a champion chaser, or even one that can win a Group 1 event.
But just like Lotto, if your numbers don't come in, your prospective purchase may not have enough ability to win a race at any track, let alone at a venue such as Wentworth Park or Richmond.
As we say, that is the luck of the draw, but I can assure you of this...Greyhound racing is the most affordable racing code to be involved in as an owner - your initial purchase price and on-going costs are minimal when compared to other codes but the rewards can be huge.
I'm yet to meet anyone who can accurately forecast that a pup of any age before it is broken-in (taught to race) will win races, but by making informed decisions, you can maximise your chances of stepping into the winning circle.
It's virtually impossible to put a price on a dog because it does come down to buyer demand but one of the golden rules of buying a pup is simple...try to purchase the best-bred stock that you can afford.
Pups from well performed Sires out of Brood Bitches who have thrown winners in their previous litters will naturally cost more, but so too will pups from well-performed bitches who are yet to have any pups hit the racetrack.
Again, the breeding of a greyhound is no guarantee of success but it certainly doesn't do your chances any harm.
The best advice is to research the pup you are thinking of buying or seek advice from experts who really know what they are talking about and have no vested interest in the pup you are looking at.
A lot of experienced greyhound participants will tell you that it’s all in the Breeding and the Rearing, so buying from a reputable and knowledgeable professional is a good start to protecting your investment.
Mind you, I also know of some people who have some weird ways of selecting their pups like; the first one that runs up to them in a yard; the one that looks most like their mother (or father); the one that bites their ankle and so on...some of these ways have proven very successful in the past so who am I to question their methodology?
How much will it cost?
This too comes down to a few of the factors we listed above.
A well-bred pup at 3 months of age from a highly performed Sire out of a Brood bitch who has thrown City winners in her previous litters or was a top class chaser, could cost you anything up to $35,000.
At the same time, you could buy pups that may also be well bred but come from slightly inferior bloodlines for $2,000 - $7,000.
Do some groundwork by looking at a website such as Greyhound-Data to see what pups are for sale to get an idea as to how much you should pay and if you're not certain, go to a race track and speak with one of our leading trainers who will be more than willing to offer you their advice.
What are Rearing and Breaking-In Costs?
This is what it will cost you to have your pup reared at a specialist and registered Greyhound property before it is broken-in.
One of the best pieces of advice here is that you get what you pay for.
You want to give your pup every chance of success so spend a little bit more and make sure it is well looked after.
Go and have a look at property's which specialise in Rearing and see that the pups have big yards which will enable them to develop their lung capacity and also their galloping - make sure those yards are clean with little or no droppings on the ground which is a breeding haven for worms which can severely stunt your greyhounds growth (PS: Don't expect to see NO droppings in yards and NO flies around as we are talking about animals, but make sure the droppings haven't been there for days)
Expect to pay between $60 and $75 per week to have your Pup reared which should include a regular worming plan, good food, plenty of galloping and lots of TLC.
This is where your greyhound is taught to jump from the starting boxes and to chase the lure and it is generally done when a pup is between 13 and 17 months of age to enable it to handle the rigours of such a program.
There are a number of Breaking-In and Trial Track establishments registered with GWIC and your Rearing proprietor will also have a number of contacts they can suggest.
The breaking-in course will normally take 4 weeks and cost approx. $125 per week after which your pup would normally be expected to go for a spell of around 4 - 6 weeks to recover from the stresses of Breakin-In before it enters the kennels of a Trainer to begin its racing career.
Some trainers like to continue a pup’s education straight away but normally, it wouldn't go from the Breaking-In course straight to the race track.
Sometimes the 'penny doesn't drop' and some greyhounds may need to be re-educated but this is generally an exception rather than the rule.
There are a number of professional trainers registered with GWIC if your Rearer can't suggest or recommend one.
Most of our top trainers will only take 'City-Class' greyhounds and they will generally want to see your pup trial to accurately gauge their ability before taking it on.
The Trainer you ultimately get for your pup is largely determined by its ability.
The top City-Class greyhounds are normally prepared by our best professional Trainers; TAB and Country-Class greyhounds are sent to Trainers in regions where they will be given the best chance to win a race.
There are also a number of different Training arrangements which are made between yourself as an Owner and the Trainer and this is where the industry is a lot more affordable than in comparison to owning a Racehorse.
The 'industry-standard' agreement for once a greyhound has reached the stage where it is ready to race, is that the Owner pays no weekly Training fees but agrees to a 50:50 split of any prizemoney the greyhound wins.
Again, seek out a Trainer and ask them what the fees are and then make an informed decision as to where to send your prized possession.
Getting the right advice
If you are new to the industry, don’t attempt to buy a greyhound without getting professional advice.
At Gold Muzzle Sales & Syndications, we offer a no-obligation service to assist you in purchasing a greyhound, whether it is a pup or a greyhound which is already racing.
For more information, call us on 0450 27 11 72 or fill out the contact form below and we'll get back to you as soon as possible with all the information.
Good luck in your quest to race a winner because I can assure you one of the greatest feelings you can ever experience is seeing your own greyhound be first past the post.
The information above is offered as a guide only and Gold Muzzle Sales & Syndications accepts no responsibility - prospective purchasers are encouraged to undertake their own research into greyhounds they are interested in purchasing.
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