1. GROOMING REQUIREMENTS: Whippets have very short coats that have a single layer only (no undercoat) so very little grooming is needed -- a quick wipe with a cloth, a light brushing and only an occasional bath, regular toenail trims, ear and teeth cleaning is about all that is required.
I want a dog that has lots of hair.
Oh good, I was hoping for a breed that doesn't shed.
A short coat that needs little grooming is my idea of the perfect dog coat.
2. HOUSETRAINING: Most Whippets are as clean as cats. If as puppies they were raised in a clean environment (where either Mom or their breeder immediately removed waste from their beds and play areas) they may need very little actual house training. Some Whippets don't like to go out in bad weather and may be stubborn about house training when it is raining. If you do not have fencing, you must be ready to walk your Whippet -- on a leash at all times -- during rainstorms, at night, before bed, in your pajamas, at dawn, several times a day, etc.
I'm willing to walk my Whippet as often as necessary, to help him or her maintain clean house training habits.
I've always just let my dogs go out by themselves to do their business.
Sounds like the best breed for me; I cannot tolerate ANY dog messes!
3. WATCHDOG / PROTECTIVE ABILITIES: In general Whippets are not "barky" dogs. If and when they do bark, it's for a reason. Whippets most likely will not bark and growl when someone approaches your front door, and they will generally protect themselves from an intruder by hiding or running away from the stranger (or by hiding behind you and expecting YOU do the protecting).
Oh, I'm sure I can teach MY Whippet to bark and growl...
My interest in Whippets has nothing to do with having a dog as a watchdog or for protection.
Good, I want a quiet dog that makes no noise at all.
4. INTELLIGENCE / TRAINABILITY / INDEPENDENCE: Whippets are intelligent, although not necessarily in ways you might like. Many learn to open gates, garbage containers, etc. They are independent thinkers and they like to make their own decisions. Many have done well in obedience, but it takes an innovative trainer as they learn fast and quickly become bored. They must enjoy their training: force or negative training techniques will cause a Whippet to "tune you out".
Whippets are probably not going to fetch the stick you throw, yet they can become amazing Frisbee catchers, leaping two or three times their height into the air to catch a flying disc mid-flight. Some Whippets become avid swimmers but most prefer to simply wade in the warmer waters by the shore or better yet, to watch from the sunny, dry beach and chase seagulls.
I've heard that a combination of positive and negative training works wonders; I'll have MY Whippet retrieving sticks for me in no time!
Wow, a dog that thinks for itself! Sounds like an interesting training challenge.
I want a dog that will do it all: fetch, swim, catch Frisbees and be an obedience champion.
5. TEMPERAMENT: Whippet temperaments range from sensitive to very outgoing, with most falling in the middle range of sensible, sweet, happy and affectionate (but not demanding or slobbery). Some Whippets occasionally lick, but most enjoy poking their nose at you instead. They are at their best lying on the couch with you (or on you) and love body contact. Some Whippets become one-person dogs, tolerating other people in their lives but clearly preferring and trusting the companionship of one special person.
Whippets can be good with other animals if they are raised around those animals. Because Whippets were bred to chase and catch game, any small animal that runs may trigger this response. They are usually fine with other dog breeds their size or slightly larger, though they may be at least initially fearful around giant breeds.
I want no dogs on the furniture in my home.
Gee, I hope the Whippet will be good to my rabbit, my cat, my guinea pig, my pet snake, my cockatoo, and my turtle... all of which live uncaged in my home...
Sensibly sweet is just what I'm looking for in a dog.
6. UNIQUE BEHAVIORS: Whippet good-natured play usually means jumping up against their "playmate" and "poking" with their front paws, or with their noses. A 30-lb Whippet's friendly poke can accidentally cause bruises, or could knock over an unsuspecting visitor.
They like to sleep with other Whippets or with other humans, with their bodies wedged tightly against their fellow sleepers. Many Whippets will bury themselves completely under bedding and sleep that way quite happily, despite the fact that their owners fear they'll suffocate (they don't).
Whippets can be avid "counter-surfers." Meats set out on a kitchen counter to defrost become an open invitation for most Whippets to help themselves.
Outdoors, most Whippets are also hunters. They will run after anything that is fuzzy, furry, or feathered that moves, and will sometimes catch and kill (and eat) their targets.
EEUW! They'll eat WHAT?!?
I want no dogs on the furniture in my home; that includes the bed.
A pack-sleeping, paw-poking, counter-surfing fuzz-hunter, huh? Sounds like a great "best friend" to me!