My two first Whippets, bless them!  
In the photo above you can see my first two Whippets "Jiffy" and "Bobby" who absolutely won our hearts from day one and sold us to the breed forever! They were half brothers and as you can see, devoted companions. After a year where Jiffy was our "only child" and missed having another dog to play with, we decided he should have a playmate who could run as fast as he. So we went back to our breeder and got Bobby and now we really saw some wild, hectic antics! Seeing Whippets playing at high speed is a sight no one should cheat themselves of! It takes your breath away! This is my page all about Whippets!
Vibes Toscanini and Vibes Rhapsody!
Two of my Whippets enjoying the sun.

A wall plaque with whippet and figure
A relief I have made in clay.
Whippets love to sunbathe!
The Whippet is an elegant smooth haired little dog whose ideal shoulder height (on the Continent under the FCI) is 44-47 cm for bitches and 47-51 cm for dogs. They come in all colours and also with various attractive markings and brindle. Their coats are soft and smooth and it's always a pleasure to stroke them - and they adore the odd word or touch from their owner! As tiny puppies they look very little like the beautiful and super-elegant adult dog they soon will grow up and become!

The breed is very old. There has always existed greyhound types in all sizes and one can see this in all kinds of art through the ages.

It is only in the last century that we have all decided to preserve the desired size for the Whippet breed and "discard" all who are too large or too small. Once, nobody cared about size, so long as the dog could successfully capture its prey! Their original prey was the rabbit, which was a welcome food supplement for many a poor and permanently hungry family. At the end of 1800 or so came the advent of dog racing (called rag-racing in those days, you'll find more of this on my following pages) and the Whippet enjoyed a sudden explosion of popularity, especially with the many very poor coal mining families in the North of England.
This was because a good dog could win in a few seconds more than its owner could earn in a whole week of hard work! The families loved their Whippets and let them live in the house where they got pampered with the best food and care their owner could afford. Many a child was sent to bed on a crust of bread, but the family's Whippet always got its piece of meat! Every Sunday was devoted to racing - which gave the owners plenty of fresh air and excitement in their otherwise very dull and hard working lives mostly underground!

(You can see three pictures from this "rag-racing" from the turn of the century on my next page which can be chosen from the bottom of this page.)

Italian Greyhound and Whippet playing.

Rhappy as adult with Tosca as a puppy
Whippet "Rhappy" with puppy "Toscanini"

Some of the coal miners bred terrier breeds into their whippets - because they wanted a wilder, tougher, more determined dog to race and grab the rag. These experiments were soon dropped as any loss of the special whippet form, means a loss of speed. However many whippets today still have some of the "terrier wildness" in their characters inherited from terrier ancestors way back in time.

Some Whippets can be very wild and playful when they are young and can try the patience of the owner with their bursts of energy. They need a new toy to play with nearly every day, but they are easy to please: just a piece of old rope or a wooden cooking spoon, grandfather's worn out slippers, a tennis ball, a deflated football or an old sock stuffed with other socks and they are happy for hours!
As they mature, they become calmer, tho' a burst of wild exercise each day is needed, also to keep them in top form.
They are small athletes and need exercise to keep their muscles trim - and their minds happy and well balanced. Little and often is good!
They are a breed that loves to run - so don't chose one if you can't let your dog run around for a short while on a daily basis.

In the olden days in England in the winter they were paraded about wearing smart colourful coats. With its handy little size and faithful loving ways, and so easy to train - it just wants to please! - it's no wonder that the Whippet has become the most popular sighthound breed today. Whippets are so easy to care for with their short fine coat and small feet that hardly bring any dirt into the house. For the same reason, they never smell "doggie" either! They just need the occasional brush down and a rub down with a damp cloth which keeps them healthy and shiny!
Whippets, like the other sighthounds, have no fat layer and therefore feel the cold in the winter, especially if forced to walk on the lead so they cannot keep warm by running around. Hence they need a coat or a raincoat (best is a variety of coats in different "warmth's"!) against the worst weather in the winter. They also hate to get wet.

My grandchild with our three whippets plus two of our friend's,
who were staying with us.

They like to run freely every day, but in general do not need so much exercise as people assume. They are sprinter types who get quickly tired after a good scamper around and are glad to be home again in the warm - preferably lying in one of the best armchairs or sunbathing in a spot of sunshine - and of course always near their owner whom they adore. They are easily trained - all they want is to please you! And easily learn to come when called, especially if tit-bits are given! They run around often at hair-raising speeds but they are also the fastest to come back to the owner again! They are very devoted. One must just remember that their love of the chase - and years of training and breeding only from the best, can lead them to run off if they see what they think is "prey".
As with all sighthounds, they use their eyes a great deal. But not to worry too much if they run off, as they soon get tired and by one's side again. They don't spend hours following a scent trail like other dogs can.
You must just be VERY careful as to WHERE to let them off to run freely. Choose only very safe places miles from roads and cars or wild animals they might be tempted to chase.
A happy scene after a race at KallerupbaneMy dogs and friend's dogs play in our garden 2008.

They are so light footed that several can run daily around the garden without harming lawns and flower beds - an advantage if the owner is a garden-lover!
They just live for their owners, are VERY devoted and need to be near them as much as possible where they are quite happy to lie quietly and keep an eye on things.

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A happy scene after a race at Kallerupbane
Here you see two of my Whippets after an enjoyable race at Kallerupbanen in Denmark, in 1998. They were 1st and 3rd!

Whippets asleep - they can't be too warm and love blankets to burrow under!

He has a bone he wants to bury in the garden!

CLICK HERE for a page about rag-racing
which also has three old and entertaining pictures from rag racing in the olden days!

See whippets run like crazy so they fly: