Category Archives: dog art

Is This the Dog for Me? – Greyhound

'Friends in Need' Painting by Gabriele -

'Friends in Need' Painting by Gabriele -

Check out the link on this site or your local rescue group for adopting a greyhound.

Greyhounds were amongst the most highest-favored of all dogs; Pharaohs and other Egyptian, Asian and African leaders had images of their dogs engraved into their tombs dating as far back as 4000BC. However, DNA analysis done in 2004 put it close to herding dogs, implying that although greyhounds have been around for millennia, the modern breed sprang from a wider genetic base more recently. Greyhounds were first used for hunting antelopes, wolves and deer and after the decline of large game for coursing smaller animals. Later track racing took over which again proved them to be the fastest dogs on earth with speeds around 40 miles. Only the cheetah is faster in the animal world. The ‘grey’ does not refer to color but, according to some sources, comes from Old English, meaning ‘fine’. Others say it is contracted form of ‘degree hound’ as it was once allowed to be possessed only by people with degrees. And others say that it derives from Greece.

The greyhound has a graceful, strong muscled, deep-chested, narrow-waisted, streamlined body. While running its long tail acts as a keel and the ears can fold toward the neck. Males can measure between up to 30”, weighing up to 70 lbs.
The greyhound has his eyes well positioned at the sides of his head giving him a far wider field of view than other dogs (270 degrees versus 180 degrees.) They are sight hounds and can spot movement up to half a mile away.

Greyhounds are calm and social indoors and are often referred to as couch potatoes. Although greyhounds are possibly the most athletic of all domestic dogs they do not necessarily need a lot of exercise. Two 20 minute walks a day will usually suffice.  A high fenced garden is advised as they are great jumpers. Greyhounds are fairly easy to train and can learn almost all commands. However, they must never be allowed off leash in public places, as it is in their natures to chase anything that moves and may choose to totally ignore you if they have their eyes set on a prey.

They are affectionate with their families although can be aloof with strangers. They normally get on well with other dogs in the household but cat owners should exercise caution although many are said to tolerate or even take to cats or small dogs. Because of their nature as sprinters, greyhounds have relatively low endurance and their conditioning need to be slowly build up if you’d like to take him jogging.

Greyhounds rarely bark. The joke goes that greyhounds are good watchdogs: they watch thieves carry your stuff away. They are relatively small eaters and will therefore not cost a lot to feed. Grooming is very easy, a good brush once a week is enough. They don’t have much body odor but like most short haired dogs do shed a little.

Greyhounds will live on average for 10 to 12 years. However, some ex-racers only live to 7 possibly due to the use of steroids during their racing careers.
Because of the greyhound’s explosive physical abilities, they are prone to leg injuries. They are also known to be sensitive to drugs, especially sedatives. Adopted greyhounds will need regular dental care as their teeth are generally badly neglected. Nails must be kept short and the ears kept clean. Skin irritations of the tail and esophageal malformations are possible breed ailments.

Related Designer Mixes:
Whippet: Cross of fox terrier and greyhound

Other greyhound breeds:
Spanish greyhound (Spain)
Rampur greyhound (India)
Saluki (Arabia)
Sloughi (Africa)

'Quite A Day' Painting by Gabriele -

'Quite A Day' Painting by Gabriele -




‘Tough Love’ Painting by Gabriele –

Rescue the San Francisco Chronicle

Although I love gadgets, I can’t imagine reading a newspaper on a screen.

There is just something about the feel and the smell of a newspaper. The visit to the coffee shop; the anticipation of a cup with your daily read. Getting out of the solitude of the art studio. The sharp snap when straightening out a page; the rustling of paper going back and forth between front page and the rest of an article, while using the break to scan your surroundings for familiar faces. The taking in of photos and headlines, deciding which article to read first. The glance over the top to check out a newcomer. The funnies, the in-depth stories, the coupons, the daily gossip, the political satire…..

Besides, with no more newspaper, what to do when …uh…house training your puppy, packing up dishes, protecting your floor from spills while you paint?
And what will happen to all those products from recycled paper? Search Google and you find thousands of pages using old newspaper: home insulation, scrap booking, basket weaving, art projects, hand bags, pencils, even USB sticks from recycled newspaper, you name it.

And what about your dog?  His daily routine of  fetching the paper from the wet grass in the front yard?  His anticipation of ‘Good Dog” and a pat on the head. The morning ritual.

We need you San Francisco Chronicle

'Sadie rescues the Chronicle'  Painting by

'Sadie rescues the Chronicle' Painting by

Picasso and his dog Lump

In my insatiable quest for anything about dogs and art I came upon a curious little book at one of my favorite independent bookstore in Half Moon Bay, Coastside Books. Coastside Books just downsized a bit but still going strong!

The book is about Picasso and his Dachshund Lump, pronounced Loomp, a German name for little rascal. It is full of wonderful black and white photographs of Picasso’s and Jacqueline’s private live in 1957 at the artist’s Villa La Californie near Cannes and some of Picasso’s paintings from that time. The little wiener previously belonged to photographer David Douglas Duncan who is also the author of this book. When Lump accompanied Duncan to a photo shoot to Picasso’s home he decided he had found paradise on earth and decided to move in with Picasso.

Duncan writes: ‘Picasso’s welcome of Lump into his family happened so fast Jacqueline was stunned- speechless. There had always been dogs around Picasso’s studio and seen in some of his paintings, but never in his arms- where Lump was now at home.’
Duncan reminisces about the underlying causes for Lump’s attachment to Picasso; Duncan’s rather nomadic lifestyle and his other dog – a giant, jealous Afghan hound who had tyrannized Lump and made their life in Rome difficult.

As anybody who has had dachshunds knows, they will never accept a role of second class dog and they sure know a good thing when they see it. And what’s classier than being Picasso’s top dog and being immortalized by countless of his paintings.

Picasso and Lump

Picasso and Lump

Pablo, Jacqueline & Lump

Pablo, Jacqueline & Lump

Watercolor dogs

I’m really getting into watercolor. I’m still doing most of my pet portrait paintings and my large scale dog and cat paintings in acrylic, but watercolor has a different feel to it and it is nice to switch between mediums.
Watercolor is softer and I’m really having fun with light and shadows.
Below is another painting from the Alameda SPCA reunion.

Alameda SPCA

Painting by

Less people more dogs

Of course even before the end of the watercolor class I’ve gone back to the dogs. Not that I don’t like painting people, I do, but none of my furry clients ever complained I make them look too old.

The painting below is inspired by the Alameda SPCA reunion a couple of weeks ago. A lot of classy dogs showed up from cute little mutts to purebred Jack Russels, French Bulldogs and Labradors. They all got along well and excitedly exchanged stories about their new owners. Since all looked happy, I assume the stories were good.

After the party

Painting by

Dog Icons

Since word got out that I collect anything to do with dogs in printed form, friends bring me interesting works from all over the globe. Recently I got a little book from China (in Chinese) showing creative and fun dog icons. I can’t make out who’s behind the book but it looks like they are from a nationwide competition in China. The website listed in the book is but of course the site is in Chinese too. It looks like fun. If anybody can figure out what it is, I’d be interested to hear.
Here are a few examples of book pages:

Chinese image designing contest

Chinese image designing contest