The Whippet is a lean, graceful sighthound breed resembling a small Greyhound. Originally bred to race in 19th century England, today’s Whippet hasn’t lost its chasing instinct but is a quiet, sweet-natured companion dog. Another name sometimes used for this breed is Snapdog.

The muscular and athletic Whippet weighs 12 to 14 kg and stands 44 to 52 cm tall, reaching running speeds of up to 56 km/h.

The Whippet has a short, fine coat and comes in a large variety of solid or mixed colours, including black, white, blue, red and fawn, sometimes with brindle or white markings. Use soft brushes and gentle shampoos to protect your Whippet’s fine coat and sensitive skin.

Whippets are very clean dogs and their hypoallergenic coat makes them a suitable breed for people with allergies.

These are gentle, affectionate dogs that are ideal human companions. While patient and adaptable, Whippets do not like to be handled roughly and may like to stay away from toddlers. Some Whippets can be highly strung, requiring understanding owners. They get on well with other animals.

The Whippet will happily live a lazy indoor life, playing with soft toys for hours, and does not need much exercise. However, this is still a sighthound that can decide to chase any moving object. This dog can make very high jumps if tempted, so if you have a yard, make your fences 1.8 m high.

A generally healthy breed, its sensitive skin and stomach and long limbs makes the Whippet susceptible to skin reactions and lacerations, stomach upsets and bone fractures.

Whippets are known to reach an age of about 15 years.

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Liz Walden

Liz has a passion for all things cat and dog, and was one of the first in Australia to bring Pet Insurance to the market. She has headed up Petsecure marketing for the past 10 years, and is committed to promoting and supporting the amazing work done by rescue groups around Australia, and those who work to promote a better life for all animals

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