Developed in northern England about a century ago to replace the Fox Terrier in hunting hare. Cross between various Terriers, the Italian Greyhound and Greyhound. Used in competitions staged by miners the name derived from ‘whip up’ or whip it’ with the breed enjoying renewed popularity.
Small to medium size, lean, muscular, athletic dog with an aerodynamically designed body.
Grooming and Physical Needs
- Grooming Needs: Minimal for coat; no doggy odour; nails need regular trimming.
- Coat Type: Fine, short, soft coat.
- Moulting: Little shedding.
- Exercise Needs: The breed is not demanding and enjoy a daily walk or jogging with owners (once fully mature) but are happy to forego it if it’s too cold, too hot or too wet.
- Average Life Span: 15 years.
- Family: Ideal for young, old and for families. Due to their fine coats and low body fat, they are best allowed access to the house and need to be provided with a warm coat in colder weather.
- Temperament: Happy, playful, not aggressive to other dogs or people.
- Trainability: Intelligent and adaptable dog that responds well to positive training methods; the owner must be patient and gentle.
- Sociability (Other Pets): Good with other dogs and pets but as a Sighthound, they should be carefully socialised with cats and other small pets to moderate their natural prey drive.
- Barking: Low tendency.
Can be trained for agility, flyball, obedience, canine freestyle (dancing) in addition to their racing, working and companionship roles.
They are best described as the wicked clowns of the dog world, if you want a dog that will make you laugh, then a Whippet is right for you. Whippets can jump high so good fencing is a must.