There is an adage that much loved pets leave their paw prints on our hearts. While that is certainly true, some SHUG volunteers and adopters take it one step further. They want their love for their Sighthounds permanently etched in their skin in a range of unique tattoos stunning in their intricacy and beauty.
The tattoo that Jill, from Virginia, has on her upper arm honors her first Greyhound, Emerson. She says he was her “heart dog” and her tattoo mirrors a favorite photo of him. She adopted the ex-racer when he was 9 and he lived with her for six years before passing away. “I got the tattoo of his portrait so I would always have him by my side, even when the inevitable happened,” she said.
Maegan, also of Virginia, has a tattoo that is a portrait of her Greyhound, Lillie, who she rescued in England. She calls Lillie a “Victorian princess,” who was always prim, proper – and bossy. Maegan adopted Lillie at a difficult time, when her husband was deployed to Kuwait and she was living in England for the first time. Why did she get a tattoo of her? “I always want her to be a part of me,” she said.
Missy’s tattoo is an actual paw print of her Italian Greyhound, Razon Cane. Missy, who lives in Virginia, knew the little iggie was dying of liver failure, so she put her dog's paw in ink and then on paper. After she passed, Missy took the print to her tattoo artist and had the image tattooed on her right arm, where Razon Cane had slept every night. “I feel she is still with me,” she said.
While some of the tattoos are mostly private, in areas that are more usually covered, some really wanted tats out there for everyone to see. Wendi, of New Jersey, wanted her love of Greyhounds to be visible (well, except when she's wearing boots). After looking at different tattoos for years she finally had this fabulous flowing image of a running Greyhound down her ankle and around the top of her foot designed just for her. Cue the shorts and sandals this summer!
Susan, from Maryland, has no fear of the tattoo artist's needle. She has a variety of tattoos of many designs. But she wanted one that clearly demonstrated to others her love of Greyhounds and how much they've meant to her. Not only can Susan see the tattoo by simply looking down at her arm, it is easily seen by others. Eventually, Susan intends to have a running Greyhound with wings put on her other wrist to honor all her dogs who have passed on.
Jorja, who lives in Michigan, has a simple and stylish tattoo of ex-racer Preakness Prince, who she calls “Bix Sexy.” He was Jorja’s first Greyhound. The tattoo is intended to reflect her passion for the breed and the overall rescue efforts for all Sighthounds. Eventually, she plans to add the ID numbers of her two other Greyhounds.
Sue, from Iowa, also has a simple, stylish, black ink tattoo that celebrates her “love affair with Sighthounds.” She found the Art Deco styled design after searching through the Internet for an image she really liked.
If you're still not convinced that art and ink and Sighthounds go together, consider this tattoo. It was inspired by the works of Louis Icart, a well-known early 20th century artist. Susan, from Louisiana, had this stunning tattoo designed for her. It features the images of her first three Greyhounds – all of whom have passed on.
We do understand that tattoos may not be for everyone, but these stunning works of art are skin-deep beauty with messages of love and devotion that we heartily support. Maybe they'll inspire you!