is a breed of dog, specifically a member of the sight hound
family. They are active and playful and are physically similar to a small
greyhound. Their popularity has led to the reuse of the Whippet name on a large
number of things, from cars to cookies.
It's a dog's life - Whippets
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Whippets are a medium-size dog averaging in weight from 25 to 40 lb (11–18
kg), with height (under the FCI standard) of 18.5 inches (47 cm) for dogs and
17.5 inches (44 cm) for bitches. Whippets tend to be somewhat larger in the
United States with show, coursing and some race Whippets required to be within
the AKC standard of 18.5 to 22.5 inches (48–56 cm) for dogs, and 17.5 to 21.5
inches (46–53 cm) for bitches. Because colour is considered immaterial in judging
whippets, they come in a wide variety of colours and marking patterns, everything
from solid black to solid white, with red, fawn, brindle, blue, or cream. All
manner of spots and blazes and patches are seen, sometimes all in the same
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Whippets are generally quiet and gentle dogs, content to spend much of the
day sleeping. They are not generally aggressive towards other animals, and
although especially attached to their owners, they are friendly to visitors.
They are not prone to snapping, so they are good with young children. Because of
their friendly nature they have often been known to be used in aged care
facilities. They may or may not bark when strangers arrive, and are not suited
to be guard dogs due to their trusting and unsuspicious nature. They do however
tend to attack cats that stray onto their territory. Outside, particularly when
they are racing or lure coursing, they demonstrate their superb athletic skills
and will pursue their “quarry” (even when it is an artificial lure) with the
heart of a lion.
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Q. I have a Whippet Named Samison and is
10yrs old now. My question is should I get another one
for a companion for him or not?
Interestingly, some whippets are to subject to "excessive greeting disorder".
This unique greeting ritual is characterized by wild displays of exuberance -
bounding, jumping, howling, barking, etc. - when their owners return from long
absences of 10 minutes or more. This can be a problem with very young children
in the house as they may easily be knocked over.
Unlike some other breeds, the males are as easy to housebreak, and no more
aggressive, than females. Both sexes make excellent pets. Males are sometimes
considered to be slightly more loyal and to enjoy repetitive play. Females can
be a little more complex and strong-willed, but are equally devoted to their
owners. Males tend to be one to two inches taller, and three to six pounds
heavier, than females.
Whippets are not well adapted for living in a kennel or as outside dogs.
Their coats do not provide the insulation to withstand prolonged periods of
exposure to the cold. Their natural attachment to people makes them happiest
when kept as house pets. They are most at home in the company of their owners, in
their lap or lying next to them on the lounge. Whippets are quiet and thus well
suited to apartment life, although they do need regular exercise. The chance to
run free in open spaces should be made available to the whippet. Care, however,
should be taken with whippets on the street as it is difficult to instil any
sort of traffic sense into them.
Whippets, as their heritage would suggest (they have been called a "poor
man's racehorse"), are outstanding running dogs and are top competitors in lure
coursing, straight racing, and oval track racing. Typically in these events, a
temporary track and lure system is set up. The lure is usually a white plastic
trash bag, sometimes in conjunction with a "squawker" to simulate a sort of prey
sound or with a small piece of animal pelt. With the advent of new methods in
motivational obedience training being used, whippets are becoming successful
obedience dogs. Many enjoy fly ball and agility.
The elegance and ease of grooming of the whippet have made it a somewhat
popular show dog. It has, however, never quite gained the popularity of such dog
show stalwarts as the poodle. The whippet is a sight hound with a medium to
strong prey drive. A whippet can never be let off lead in an open area. He or
she needs a fenced yard. Experienced whippet owners are pleased that they have
not become popular like other breeds.
Given proper nutrition, exercise, and veterinary care, most whippets live for
12 to 15 years. They are generally
healthy, and are not prone to the frequent ear infections, skin allergies, or
digestive problems that can afflict other breeds. Genetic eye defects, though
quite rare, have been noted in the breed. Because of this the American Whippet
Club recommends that all breeders test for this defect in their breeding stock.
Hip dysplasia is unknown in whippets. Undescended testicles are common in the
breed. Whippets, like most sighthounds, are sensitive to barbiturate
The heart of a whippet is large and slow beating, often being arrhythmic or
even intermittent when the animal is at rest. This sometimes causes concern to
the owner, or to the vet not experienced with the breed. Whippets will, however,
demonstrate a regular heartbeat during exercise. In a health survey conducted by
The Kennel Club (UK) cardiac problems were shown to be the second leading cause
of mortality in Whippets.
It is not clear, however, whether this is at all related to the breed's somewhat
unusual heart function.
A 2007 study identified a
myostatin mutation particular to whippets that is significantly associated with
their athletic performance. Whippets with a single copy of this mutation are
generally very fast; those with two copies have disproportionately large
musculature and are known as "bully whippets".
Whippets were bred to hunt by sight, coursing game in open areas at high
speeds. One can find numerous representations of small greyhound-like hounds in
art dating back to Roman times but the first written English use of the word
"whippet" with regard to a type of dog was in 1610. There is a picture by Jean
Baptiste Oudry (1686–1755) of "Misse", one of two English whippets presented to
Louis XV, in the Washington National Gallery and another, with her companion, "Turlu",
by the same artist in the Musée National de Fontainebleau. However, some French
sources, notably the Ministry of Culture, use the word "levrette" to describe
Misse and Turlu. Levrette translates as "female greyhound". In the nineteenth
century, whippet racing was a national sport in England, more popular than
It is only beginning with this period that the existence of the
whippet as a distinct breed can be stated with certainty. The age of the modern
whippet dawned in 1890 when the English Kennel Club granted the breed official
recognition, thus making the whippet eligible for competition in dog shows, and
commencing the recording of their pedigrees. Early specimens were taken from the
race track by dog fanciers of the time and exported all over the world. The
whippet's versatility as a hunting, racing, exhibition or companion dog soon
made it the most popular of the sight hound breeds.
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My two whippets love going to the park and racing
each other, then they become totally lazy at home
they like being spoilt
Whippets running at full speed