Whippet

Whippet

Size
Medium
Height
Males – 19 to 22 inches at the withers, Females – 18 to 21 inches at the withers
Weight
25 to 40 pounds
Coat
Short/Smooth
Color
Any
Energy
Medium
Activities
Agility, Conformation, Lure Coursing, Racing

The Whippet was developed in England, where he was used for racing and rabbit hunting. This elegant athlete is capable of speeds up to 35 mph. 

Temperament

Despite their intensity during sporting pursuits, Whippets are quiet and dignified at home. Amiable, friendly and gentle, these sweet and loving companions are quite content to join in a relaxing family evening, curling up on a sofa or warm bed. 

Whippets are sleek, natural athletes who do best with regular exercise. They enjoy a run in a fenced yard, but are equally happy as apartment dwellers, as long as their owners are willing to get them out for regular walks.

Characteristics

With his tucked waist, deep chest, long neck and lean muzzle, the Whippet embodies the streamlined physique of a Greyhound, only in miniature. Slim and surefooted, this member of the Hound group is a breed built for speed. 

Lifespan

12 to 15 years

Colors

The Whippet’s coat can be any of a wide array of solid colors or color combinations including white, black, blue fawn and red. Whippets can also be brindle patterned. 

Shedding

Whippets do shed occasionally, but their short, smooth coats don’t need more than a regular brushing and an occasional bath. 

Health

Whippets are healthy dogs, but for owners who are new to the breed, a Whippet at healthy weight might appear “skinny” compared to more full-bodied breeds. A healthy adult Whippet should have two to four visible vertebrae. 

Carrying extra weight is hard on a Whippet’s frame, so maintaining a healthy weight is especially important to his overall health. 

Best Dog Food for Whippet Dogs & Puppies

Whippets may benefit from a quality adult dog food. For Whippets who need help with weight management, consider a healthy weight formula

Whippet puppies should eat puppy food for their first year of life to aid in their growth and development.  

History

The Whippet is a creation with roots in Victorian England, where working-class coal miners in the north enjoyed dog racing and rabbit hunting but didn’t have the space or money to properly maintain larger coursing dogs, such as Greyhounds. 

Their solution was to breed a smaller, more economical version of the Greyhound. Enter the Whippet, the fastest breed of its size, capable of speeds of up to 35 mph. 

As the 20th century was arriving, textile workers from Lancashire were also arriving in New England, bringing their Whippets with them. These sleek, speedy dogs were instantly popular, and the sport of Whippet racing became a sensation.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) registered the Whippet in 1888. 

Facts

  • A Whippet called Ashley Whippet was the first flying disc dog. In 1974, the dog and his 19-year-old owner, Alex Stein, dashed onto the Dodger Stadium baseball field and began performing flying disc tosses for fans and a television audience, inciting a national flying disc craze.
  • The Whippet’s speed is due in part to his double suspension gallop, a gait unique to sighthound breeds. The term “double suspension” refers to the fact that the Whippet is completely airborne (with no paws touching the ground) twice during each swift stride!

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