Friday, July 24, 2015

Tom's Anise Star

Today, I would like to share a little story with my friends...

On February 18. 2014 I was reflecting on my boy Tom.  It had been one year since he left me.  Out of the blue, I got a facebook message from a friend asking if I was home, she needed to talk to me.  When I answered the phone, she said she had a surprise for me.  This opportunity was for someone who she thought was special to her and asked if I was interested in naming a racing pup.  I fought back the tears and had this huge lump in my throat.  I said I would be honored.

So the waiting game began.  On July 4, 2014 I received an email with the subject line "naming the greyhounds...hope you are in town".    The content of the message was this "Black female..16 letter or spaces.  First choice,2nd and 3rd. If you use greyhound data check to insure the names have not been used in the last 10 years.Call me with any questions..need ASAP."  

I was frantic, how would I ever decide on a name?  And to come up with three choices.  Plus I would need to choose a call name.  I called on a few facebook friends to help me brainstorm on this project.  Most important in this decision, the name would somehow honor my Tom since I received the call on the anniversary of his passing. 

First thing that popped into my head, licorice.  Wow, how original was that?  Did a little research and came up with anise, which some manufacturers add to candy to give it a licorice-like flavor.  Second in my thinking was Tom's legacy.  Thirdly, I remembered how Tom loved his lady-dog friends.  So after much trial and error I came up with the following:

  1. Tom's Anise Star Call name Star
  2. Tom's Legacy Call name Lacey
  3. Tom's Shady Lady Call name Shala
About two months passed when I received the email wanting my address so I could receive a copy of the NGA sheet and that my first choice of name was chosen.  The NGA sheet was the next best thing to an actual photograph.  It showed her white spots and I at least had a visual in my head of what Star looked like.  Shortly after that, I checked greyhound data, and there she was!  

The next step to follow her racing career was to check out track info.  There I registered for an account so I could set up a virtual kennel.  I found the names of the other litter mates and placed their names in my virtual kennel.  Once you place a dog's name in your virtual kennel, you will receive e-mail notifications of upcoming races.  You will also receive an email telling you the results of the races.  

December 5, 2014 I received that email saying "The following greyhounds from your watchlist are entered in races: Tom's Anise Star, Naples, 12/05/2014, T, race 2, post #7."  Oh my gosh, her first official race.  I was nervous and excited.  I couldn't watch, how could I?  What if she stumbled?  Fell?  I have only seen one other race in my life and it was from the gift shop at Ebro.  After I find out the race is over and she finished, then I could watch the replay.  

Through the power of Facebook, I was able to connect with Vera Rasnake.  Her partner runs the Oxbow-Trow kennel which Star races for.  She sends me pictures and updates from time to time.  She also sent me a racing program from a race which she won.   
This tail is something else.  When you watch the replays, sometimes it's up there in the air like a rudder!
I am enjoying following this girl and her career.  It's been a learning experience figuring all this racing stuff out.  The one thing I have learned is that there are some awful nice folks in the racing industry.  They are responsible for bringing us the awesome pets we have when they retire to our couches.  

Today is Star's second birthday and she is racing in the 12th race at Flagler this afternoon.  I sent a special treat for her and I'm looking forward to getting a picture of the birthday girl.  Fast and safe sweetheart!


  1. What a great story!! I thought about you today, as I prepare to attend my first greyhound event in a while ... Greyt Escape in Wheeling, WV. It will be wonderful to be surrounded by needlenoses again. Give yours a hug from me.

  2. What a stunning looking girl. So black with a touch of white. Happy 2nd Bday!