Galgo vs Greyhound: Key Differences

When it comes to dog breeds known for their incredible speed and agility, Galgos and Greyhounds are often at the top of the list. These elegant and athletic dogs have captivated the hearts of many dog lovers worldwide. This comprehensive article will delve into the similarities and differences between Galgos vs Greyhounds, shedding light on their physical characteristics, temperament, history, and more.

History and Cultural Significance

Understanding the history and cultural significance of the Galgos and Greyhounds can provide valuable insights into their origins and roles throughout the centuries.


Galgos have a rich history dating back thousands of years. They are believed to have originated in ancient Egypt and were later brought to Spain by the Moors. Over the centuries, Galgos became highly valued over the centuries for their exceptional hunting skills, particularly in coursing.

They were used to chase down hares and other small game, displaying their remarkable speed, agility, and determination. Today, Galgos are beloved companions and are often adopted as rescue dogs after their hunting careers end.


Greyhounds have an equally fascinating history that spans thousands of years. Ancient civilizations, including the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, revered Greyhounds and often associated them with royalty and nobility. These graceful dogs were treasured for their beauty, speed, and loyalty.

In more recent centuries, Greyhounds became popular in the racing industry, showcasing their incredible speed on tracks worldwide. Today, Greyhound racing has declined in many countries, but the breed continues to enchant people as loving pets and companions.

Physical Characteristics

Regarding physical appearance, Galgos and Greyhounds share many similarities, yet some distinct differences set them apart.

Size and Proportions

Galgos and Greyhounds are considered large dog breeds, known for their impressive height and sleek bodies. However, there are subtle differences in their size and proportions.


On average, Galgos stand between 23 to 28 inches (58 to 71 cm) at the shoulder and weigh 55 to 75 pounds (25 to 34 kg). They have a slim, athletic build, deep chest, and long, slender legs.

brindle galgo
A brindle Galgo


Greyhounds are slightly taller and heavier compared to Galgos. They typically measure between 27 to 30 inches (68 to 76 cm) at the shoulder and weigh between 60 to 70 pounds (27 to 32 kg). Greyhounds have a similar physique to Galgos, with a deep chest, long legs, and a slim body.

Coat and Colors

Both breeds have short, smooth coats that require minimal grooming. However, there are differences in their coat textures and color variations.


Galgos have a variety of coat colors, including fawn, black, brindle, red, and white. Their coat is typically denser and coarser than Greyhounds, providing better protection against the elements.


Greyhounds come in a wide range of coat colors aswell , such as black, fawn, blue, and brindle. Their coat is often softer and thinner than Galgos, making them more susceptible to colder temperatures.

Head and Facial Features

Regarding their facial features, Galgos and Greyhounds have some subtle distinctions.


Galgos typically have a longer, narrower head with a slightly arched skull. Their ears are usually folded back, and they have almond-shaped, expressive eyes that radiate warmth and intelligence.


Greyhounds also have long, narrow heads, but they may appear more streamlined and slender compared to Galgos. Their ears are usually held back, and their eyes are large and expressive, giving them a delicate and regal appearance.

Now that we’ve explored the physical characteristics of Galgos and Greyhounds let’s move on to their temperament and behavior.

black greyhound head
A black Greyhound

Temperament and Behavior

While Galgos and Greyhounds share some common traits, they also have distinct temperaments that can influence their suitability as pets.


Galgos are known for their gentle and reserved nature. They are typically calm and docile dogs, deeply loyal to their owners. Galgos tend to be independent thinkers and may require patient training.

However, once a bond is formed, they are incredibly affectionate and thrive on human companionship. Due to their hunting background, Galgos may have a strong prey drive, so providing them with proper socialization and a secure environment is essential.


Greyhounds, on the other hand, are renowned for their affectionate and friendly nature. They are often described as “couch potatoes” because they love relaxation and lounging around.

Greyhounds form strong bonds with their families and are incredibly gentle with children. Thanks to their pack-oriented mindset, they generally get along well with other dogs. Greyhounds are sensitive souls that thrive in a calm and loving environment.

Training and Exercise Needs

Galgos and Greyhounds are intelligent and trainable, although their exercise requirements may differ slightly.


Regarding training, both breeds respond well to positive reinforcement techniques and consistency. However, here are some of the key differences:


Galgos, with their independent and intelligent nature, can be a bit challenging to train. They tend to have a strong prey drive and may chase small animals if they need to be properly trained and socialized.

Positive reinforcement techniques, such as rewards-based training, work best with Galgos. Providing mental stimulation and physical exercise to prevent boredom and destructive behaviors is important.

A Galgo Outdoors


Greyhounds are generally easier to train compared to Galgos. They are quick learners and respond well to positive reinforcement and gentle guidance. As sensitive dogs, they thrive on praise and positive interactions.

Although Greyhounds have a strong prey drive, their biddable nature makes them more manageable during training sessions. Regular exercise, including daily walks and occasional sprints, keeps them physically fit and mentally stimulated.


Galgos and Greyhounds are highly active breeds that require regular exercise to stay happy and healthy. However, there are some differences in their exercise needs.


Galgos have a higher energy level and may require more exercise than Greyhounds. They excel in lure coursing, agility, and long walks or runs. Providing ample mental and physical stimulation is essential to prevent boredom and destructive behavior.


While Greyhounds are still energetic dogs, they are often content with moderate exercise. Daily walks, regular play sessions, and occasional sprints in a secure area are usually sufficient to meet their needs.

It’s important to note that Greyhounds have a strong prey drive, so it’s crucial to keep them in a securely fenced area or on a leash during outdoor activities.

Health Considerations

When considering any dog breed, being aware of potential health issues is important. Galgos and Greyhounds are relatively healthy breeds, but they may be prone to certain conditions.


Galgos are known for their hardiness and resilience. They have a lower incidence of genetic health problems than other breeds. However, like all dogs, Galgos may be susceptible to certain conditions, such as hip dysplasia, bloat, and heart disease. Regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, and an active lifestyle can help maintain the overall health and well-being of a Galgo.


Greyhounds are generally a healthy breed, but they have a few health considerations to remember. They are prone to certain conditions, including bloat, dental issues, and osteosarcoma (bone cancer).

Greyhounds also have thin skin, which can be more susceptible to cuts and scrapes. Regular dental care, routine veterinary visits, and a balanced diet can help mitigate these potential health concerns.

brown greyhound on grass


In conclusion, Galgos and Greyhounds are remarkable breeds with unique qualities. While they share many common physical attributes and gentle temperaments, subtle differences set them apart. Galgos exhibit a more reserved nature and stronger prey drive, while Greyhounds are sociable and known for their relaxed demeanor.

Whether you choose a Galgo or a Greyhound as your furry companion, both breeds offer loyalty, grace, and the potential for a lifelong bond. So, embrace the beauty of Galgo vs Greyhound and embark on an extraordinary journey with these magnificent dogs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Are Galgos and Greyhounds the same breed?

No, Galgos and Greyhounds are not the same breed. While they share many similarities in physical appearance and temperament, they have distinct genetic backgrounds and slight differences in their characteristics.

Can Galgos and Greyhounds live together peacefully?

Yes, Galgos and Greyhounds can live together peacefully, especially if they are introduced and socialized early. It’s important to monitor their interactions initially and provide separate spaces and resources to prevent potential conflicts.

Do Galgos and Greyhounds make good family pets?

Yes, both Galgos and Greyhounds can make excellent family pets. They are generally gentle, affectionate, and loyal companions. However, it’s essential to consider their exercise needs and potential prey drive when introducing them to households with small children or other pets.

Can Galgos and Greyhounds be trained off-leash?

While some Galgos and Greyhounds may have excellent recall and can be trained to be off-leash, it’s important to remember their strong prey drive. Keeping them on a leash or in a securely fenced area is generally recommended to ensure their safety and prevent them from chasing after small animals.

Can Galgos and Greyhounds be kept in apartments?

While Galgos and Greyhounds are generally adaptable to various living environments, providing them with sufficient exercise and mental stimulation is important, especially if they are kept in apartments. Daily walks and access to a secure outdoor space are essential to meet their needs.

Victoria Richards

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