Breed Spotlight – Whippets

Breed Spotlight – Whippets

Since I was younger I had always wanted to get a whippet, I loved how they looked and loved their personality.

And ever since I got my first whippet that was it, these would always been my dogs.

That being said whippets aren’t for everyone.

So how do you know if a whippet is for you?

Do you like skinny dogs?

  • If the answer to this is no then the whippet is not the dog for you. Whippets are a naturally skinny breed with a small frame that should not be allowed to become overweight (though this would be a difficult to feat to achieve). Average weight ranges from 20-40 lbs with males weighing more than females.

Do you want a guard dog?

  • If so the whippet is definitely not for you. If you are looking for a glorified couch potato/bed warmer then they might be the perfect dog for you. Whippets are gentle dogs and very affectionate, they prefer to be treated as members of the family and can become anxious with separation. The are very good with children. They also are not suited to outdoor living in our climate.

Are you embarrassed dressing your dog in that sweater?

  • If so then whippets are not for you in this climate, unless you are planning on moving south. Up here because of their little fat and lack of coat you do need to dress them appropriately for the temperatures which includes sweaters and jackets.

Do you want bragging rights at the dog park for fastest dog?

  • Whippets are great for that. At a top speed of 35 mph they are the fastest dog at their size and have the quickest acceleration of any breed. They are built for sprinting, not endurance however so they will tire out faster than your border collies. Whippets require on average 20 minutes of running a day in addition to routine walks. Whippets do have a very high prey drive and caution is needed when letting them off leash that they don’t run off.

Do you want an obedience trial champion?

  • If so, whippets are not for you. While whippets can be trained they are not one of the smarter dog breeds. They are however great for agility, lure coursing, and fly ball!

Does coat colour matter to you?

  • If so perfect! Colour is immaterial and come in virtually any colour. If not then even better, less to worry about when picking out a puppy.

Do you hate grooming your dog?

  • If you answered yes that’s great. Whippets have a very short coat that requires little maintenance. Beyond brushing their teeth and clipping their nails they are very easy to maintain. They are prone to dental disease and teeth should be brushed daily and like all dogs require nail trims on a routine basis.

I am biased however I think they are great dogs, they are great with my kids and are good with my cats as well. I know not everyone likes their appearance however they truly do make up with it in the their personalities.

Thanks for reading;

Dr. Stephanie Gunsinger DVM