It has to be sighthounds – that was certain since my childhood.
We live with 6 dogs – mostly the hard to place ones: old, sick, or traumatized.
Pantoja – my first galga – my first "big" sighthound after whippet and Italian greyhound. At the age of 12, she was brought to us by an animal welfare organization from a neighboring town.
They spoke of a "dying place". Neglected, emaciated, with heart and lung symptoms, nails curling back to the pad, rotten teeth, and old untreated injuries – she stumbled into our lives. She could barely walk, and we cried and apologized as we carefully washed her.
Just a few days later, stiff-legged but full of joie de vivre, she romped through the garden with her pack and won everyone’s heart. Fears were alien to her.
Her joie de vivre, her loyalty, and all the memories of her enchant us to this day. She stayed by our sides for a whole 3 ½ years – and she will be missed forever.
The greatest gift the universe could give us.
From now on – never again without a galgo
My name is Christina Schottner and I live in Brussels with my two galgos.
I first read about the galgo around 2010, and I remember being in complete shock and disbelief when learning about the plight of this beautiful breed. I already had two dogs at the time but thought that one day I would adopt a galgo.
That one day finally arrived four years ago when we welcomed our girl Calabaza to the family. What a moving and humbling experience!
I still remember the first night when I went to check on her like an anxious new parent. I quietly sat down by her and she put her soft muzzle in my hand. My heart completely melted. I do feel that was the beginning of a lasting love story.
In February this year we welcomed our second galgo, Toto, a gentle giant.
Living with galgos is pure happiness. It's beauty, grace, affection and mischief in one package! I'm fascinated by their resilience and sensitivity, and by how they adapt and quickly become a member of the family. Cala and Toto bring me peace and they are a constant reminder to enjoy every moment.
My love for dogs from Spain started with supporting the Spanish bodeguero terrier Andaluz; I also own a mix. For sure, a second dog would also be a "bodi". But life happened differently.
I met my first galgo in 2021, when picking one up from transport to bring him to his foster home. This was the start! I began to fall in love with these gentle dogs.
Two months later, when I again picked up 2 galgos, I fell in love with Kenzo. When the transport carrier door was opened, he looked straight into my heart. He is quite tall (70 cm) and very energetic.
Since that day I'm completely lost, I'm addicted to galgos! In Germany we would say "I'm a galgoholic"!
Diego was found as a 2-month old puppy roaming the freeway all alone in Spain. He was saved by a local shelter and adopted by a local family. They unfortunately did not consider how much energy a galgo puppy has, nor how much work it takes to socialize a puppy who is growing up without siblings. So they ended locking him up in a cage, left alone once again.
Luckily the shelter did a follow-up home visit, and once again took him under their care. By this time, Diego had become a rowdy teenager who was difficult to handle. So unfortunately, even the experienced foster family looking after him had to give him up after only a week.
Once again, Diego was re-homed to another foster family in Madrid; they swore never to give him up until the perfect family was found for him.
That is where I came along. I travelled to Spain in 2020 during Christmas, and stayed 3 days with his wonderful foster family before travelling to Denmark with Diego. From day one, Diego followed me everywhere and slept in the bed with me. He suffered from extreme separation anxiety and had no sense of boundaries.
This is Miss Aiyla.
When we decided to adopt a galgo, I began to look at all the websites. We reacted to a few amazing galgos, but three times in a row we were too late, and our search continued. And one day, there she was … Aiyla.
My heart jumped and I knew this was our dog. The look in her eyes was so soft and sweet, almost angelic. Her overall look was so calm, and it has to be mentioned that she is beautiful.
I responded immediately, and this time, we got lucky. We went through the adoption process and received a date: July 21, 2018.
Aiyla is indeed angelic. She was a little cautious around people (not anymore); it took her months to lie next to me on the couch (now she owns it). Even today, she continues to transform. To summarize Aiyla's story: we started out by calling her our princess, and now we call her our clown or our stand-up comedienne. She's the perfect dog (as are they all).
Palomita, the Beautiful White Galga
Our journey began in her foster home in Germany. I remember her as a scared and skittish soul, who did not dare to meet my gaze. But I knew that we were meant to be.
The 9 hour car ride home to Sweden turned into a mutual journey of trust and respect. I held her paw in my hand the entire way, and step by step she released her fear.
It was as if we were building an invisible bridge of trust, far away from her previous life in Spain. Our bond grows stronger every day. Palomita learns how to play, love, and trust me. I watch her personality blossom – as if she was waiting for someone to see beyond her fears and realise how wonderful she is.