Any greyhound handicapper can tell you that every greyhound is weighed before every race. Their weight is even posted and you can watch them get weighed through a window, so that you know that it’s done with no funny stuff.
Obviously, anyone watching this would think, weight is a big deal. It’s something that can have a big effect on how you handicap the races, right? One of those factors that can predict whether a greyhound is ready to win.
Well, if that’s what you think, you might want to think again. There have been many studies done and all of them show that weight has very little effect on a greyhound’s performance, even if the dog is a weight loser. A weight loser is a greyhound that – probably because it’s so anxious to race – loses weight before every race. They have WL after their name in the program and usually are in the earlier races.
One indicator that race isn’t a factor in dog racing is the fact that fewer really heavy dogs dominate the field. If weight was a real factor, heavier dogs would be much more prominent on the program and especially in stakes races.
While there ARE some 80 pounders at the top grades, many more dogs are smaller. As a matter of fact, some of the best greyhounds have been on the small side. Some reasons for this might be that smaller greyhounds are more able to corner and can slip through a crowded pack better than larger dogs can.
Whether a dog is at its usual weight or a little more or less doesn’t seem to be a factor either, according to the records. Of course, if a dog has lost more than 2 pounds, it isn’t allowed to run, because this could be a sign that it’s ill. This is the real reason that greyhounds are weighed before every race, by the way.
While weight is always shown for every greyhound and while most bettors think that it’s something they should pay attention to, most good handicappers don’t take it into consideration. They know that there are other factors that have much more impact on winning at the dog track.