Pedigree whippets are one of the most popular breeds in this country.
They’re known for their lean, muscular build; symmetrical head; and charming personality.
Whippets are considered to be a “type” rather than a breed. This means that they can vary widely in appearance – some whippets look like greyhounds (long, thin noses), whilst some look more like fox terriers (shorter noses and large, round eyes).
Whippets come in a variety of colours and markings. The most common whippet colour is white with black patches, but they can also be red and white, blue and white, or tan and white.
Many people feel confused when they hear the words pedigree whippet, so in this post, we’re going to clear that up.
Let’s get to it…
What Is A Pedigree Whippet?
First, we need to identify what a pedigree whippet actually is?
A pedigree whippet is a short-haired whippet that is registered with a kennel club such as the Kennel Club for breeders to use in dog shows.
In general, they are considered more “showy” than non-pedigree whippets – this means that they have been bred with the intention of being show dogs.
That being said, a pedigree whippet doesn’t need to be used as a show or working dog, it simply means that their ancestors may have done this in the past.
Also, just because a whippet is a pedigree, doesn’t mean it’s ultra-healthy as some believe.
It simply means that its mother and father were actually bred with each other – they were planned puppies – which means they were given extensive veterinary care before and after they were born.
The word pedigree is defined as “a record of a family’s ancestry, especially the detailed tracing of important members.”
This is critical when considering whether or not to buy a pedigree – you need to know what it takes for that specific breed to be eligible for breeding.
Pedigree whippets are wonderful dogs and are pure whippet, this means that they are the truest version of this breed, simply wonderful.
When you buy a pedigree, you know that it is purebred and the breeders did everything in their power to make sure these dogs were healthy and well-adjusted.
They are one of the best breeds for families and children (with proper socialisation) and they live an average of 13 years or more!
A Non-Pedigree Whippet Vs A Pedigree Whippet
A non-pedigree whippet is not much different from a pedigree whippet, the only real difference is that its parents were not bred with each other.
Pedigree breeders are required to go through extensive testing and licensing before they can even consider breeding their whippets, including genetic testing.
This means that they are more likely to have shown or done obedience, agility, racing, or some sort of performance.
They are also less likely to have health problems associated with poor breeding – something that is becoming increasingly common in pedigree dogs.
Pedigree Whippets can be better trained and socialised since they’re used to being around people more often than non-pedigree whippets.
This is a huge benefit for those looking for a family pet.
The amount of whippet mixes that are popular today is only increasing, and it’s becoming rarer and rarer to find a true pedigree whippet.
These days, most whippet mixes are sold to people who would otherwise be looking for a pedigree.
This is perhaps because of the reputation that they have as high-energy dogs (due to their heritage in racing and hunting).
Whippet mixes can come in all shapes and sizes, but it’s important to note that this doesn’t mean that they are automatically good for families.
There are large dogs that are bred as whippet mixes, which has the potential to cause problems if your children want to interact with them in typical kid ways.
How To Identify A Pedigree Whippet
When it comes to identifying pedigree whippet, it’s important to keep in mind that they are very closely related to greyhounds.
This means that their appearance will be similar, but there are some subtle differences.
A purebred whippet should have more of a slender frame than what you would see on a greyhound.
Their bodies should also be much longer and their legs shorter, they will look like a purebred whippet and generally be quite easy to identify.
Pedigree whippets should also be quite fast, so owners should expect them to reach up to speeds of 30 – 35 miles per hour when in good shape.
It can be quite hard to be one hundred percent when trying to identify a pedigree whippet, this is because there are many whippet mixes today that without a DNA test you cannot be certain.
However, there are DNA testing kits that can be bought online which can determine if your whippet is pedigree or not.
If you don’t want to go down this root, then conducting a visual assessment on the dog to compare it with other pedigree whippets is the best way to identify a pedigree.
Are Pedigree Whippets More Expensive Than Non-Pedigree?
Buying a pedigree whippet from a reputable breeder will cost more than buying a whippet that isn’t pedigree.
However, this doesn’t mean that buying a non-pedigree will save you money.
A whippet that is not pedigree will cost less than one that is because there are not many out there and demand greatly outweighs the supply.
Pedigree dogs are in high demand because of how healthy they are and also how beautiful they can be.
This means, when you purchase a non-pedigree whippet, it will not only take longer to find one in the same condition as a pedigree but you will also have to wait for body and health improvement without the help of proper food and nutrients.
What Are The Benefits Of Pedigree Whippets?
There are some benefits to owning a pedigree whippet that should be considered before bringing a whippet into your world.
Firstly, pedigree whippets are generally much healthier than any non-pedigree dogs, which I believe is the biggest benefit.
Many breeders will make sure their dogs are extremely healthy and free of genetic diseases.
This means your pedigrees could live up to 15 years old, or more! If you adopt an older dog, you will likely get discounts because non-pedigree dogs only live up to about 10 – 12 years old.
Secondly, pedigree whippets are much more likely to be able to be trained to a very high standard and compete as a show or working dog.
This means if you’re looking for a whippet to compete, considering a pedigree whippet will likely be your best option, however you should be prepared to pay a premium.
Another benefit of pedigree whippets is that they are generally much more attractive than non-pedigree whippets and they usually have a more pleasant temperament.
There is no other DNA or genetics in the dog’s body other than that of a whippet, meaning you likely won’t experience any behaviour problems which you may have with some whippet mixes.
It’s worth keeping in mind that pedigree whippets are hard to come by nowadays, and if you do find one you should ask for a DNA test and proof from the breeder.
This is important as trying to find a genuine pedigree whippet can often be difficult and many breeders use the terms ‘pedigree’ and ‘whippet’ interchangeably.
For example, a non-pedigree dog may have been bred with another type of small dog so it appears as though it is a purebred whippet – only to find out later on that it is not.
If you are considering purchasing a pedigree whippet, be sure to ask the breeder about their line-breeding practices and any other factors which may have influenced the temperament or physical appearance of their dogs.
It’s also important to find out what health problems the parents of your prospective puppy may have had so that you can be aware of what to watch out for in your own pet.
It’s expected that you will pay a higher price for a pedigree whippet due to the benefits listed above, but be wary of a breeder who is asking for an extortionate amount of money.
If they can’t even tell you about the characteristics or health problems associated with the animals in their care, then that should set off a red flag for you.
One last thing to keep in mind when purchasing pedigree whippets is that it’s good practice to always meet the parents of your prospective pup.
Seeing what health problems are common in the whippet breed will help you to determine whether or not it’s likely that your new pet may suffer with them too.
As a whole, pedigree whippets are wonderful dogs and are certainly different from regular whippets or whippet mixes.
Pedigree whippets are a lot more expensive to purchase, they’re harder to procure and you’ll have less freedom when it comes to choosing your own colour or pattern.
However, if you want a whippet that requires less maintenance and is unlikely to run off on you then a pedigree might be the right choice for you.
If in doubt about purchasing one, be sure to do your research. By reading this article you’re already on the right track!
Thanks for taking the time to read this article and I hope you’ve learned a thing or two about pedigree whippets.
Feel free to share it with other whippet lovers who may find it of value!
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Hello. I’m Luke- the founder of WhippetCentral. I’m somewhat of a whippet nut and have been for most of my life. In that time, I’ve owned and raised numerous whippets. Bonnie is my latest girl; she is currently eight years old and keeps me very busy! Understanding the need for whippet-specific content, I decided to create this blog to share what I have learned and to share my expertise regarding owning and raising whippets – the right way!