Whippet vs Saluki: Which Is Better?

In this post we’re going to look at the whippet vs saluki to determine which one is a better fit for yourself.

Whippets may be better for first-time dog owners because they are typically slightly more intelligent than Salukis. Not only that, but they also require less exercise and maintenance.

On the other hand, whippets will need more attention and socialisation with their owner, which can be good for someone who loves spending time with their dog every day, but not as favourable for someone with a busy schedule or a big family.

Some whippets can also be more playful but have a higher tendency to chase animals. As for the similarities in their personality, both dogs are affectionate and gentle, making them a great companion for children and adults alike.

Both breeds have some similar characteristics, both in appearance and temperament, with lean-looking bodies and an agile build ideal for running.

For an owner looking to adopt a sighthound as a pet, the choice may be a confusing one to make.

The Whippet and Saluki alike have a few things in common, but there are also a number of differences that distinguish them apart.

It is important to know what these differences are to be able to pick a dog which will better suit you and your lifestyle.

Continue reading to find out a few main differences between the two, as well as how their appearance, health, care, and intelligence levels may vary so that you will be able to choose which breed is best for you.

Whippet Vs Saluki Appearance And Temperament

The most apparent and easy to spot differences between the appearance of these two breeds is the size, weight, and coat.

When it comes to height, the medium sized Whippet stands at around 18 to 22 inches at the shoulder.

The Saluki is slightly taller, reaching the height of 22 to 28 in the shoulder. Overall, the Saluki is much larger in size than the Whippet.

Whippets also weigh slightly less than the bigger Saluki. Whereas a Whippet will weigh in at around 20 to 40 pounds, a Saluki will weigh around 35 to 65 pounds, making for a heavier dog.

There are also coat differences between these two breeds of dogs. Whippets have short fur of an equal length throughout their entire body which is of the same firm texture.

On the other hand, the Saluki has short silky fur everywhere on their body apart from their ears, tails, and the back of their legs, where the hair is visibly longer.

These dogs share some similar coat markings, colours, and patterns, but the Saluki never comes in a brindle pattern like the Whippet.

However, there are some colour patterns that a Saluki can come in but not the Whippet, such as tri-colour, black, and tan, or grizzle.

One significant contrast between the appearance of the Whippet and the Saluki is that they have different ears. Salukis have long, feathered ears, but Whippets have rather small rose-shaped ears.

As for the temperament, these dogs share some similar traits. Both dogs are affectionate, have a love for exercise, are capable of living with other pets, are good with children, and are generally quiet.

Whippets and Salukis also often tend to be stubborn. This makes them tricky to train when compared to some other breeds, so they need an owner who is patient and can dedicate enough time while training either of these dogs.

However, Salukis tend to be slightly more stubborn than the Whippet, so if choosing a dog that may be easier to train, often the Whippet can be a better choice.

Another major difference between Whippets are Salukis is that Whippets are friendly with strangers, unlike the Saluki, which can act reserved and rather aloof toward those they don’t know or aren’t familiar with.

Whippet Vs Saluki Health And Lifespan

What about the health differences between the Whippet vs Saluki? Both the Whippet and Saluki are generally healthy dogs but can be predisposed to a number of health problems.

Whippets can be affected by health issues such as arthritis, heart or kidney problems, epilepsy, Addison’s disease, and a few others.

On the other hand, Salukis are prone to certain heart conditions such as mitral valve disease, heart cancer, seizures, as well as bacterial or viral infections.

As a result of their smaller size, Whippets may live slightly longer than Salukis.

While Salukis have an average lifespan of 12 to 14 years, Whippets live from 12 to 15 years or even longer.

Whippet Vs Saluki Care And Intelligence

When it comes to caring for either of these two dogs, there are a few slight differences between their needs.

Even though both dogs love to exercise, Salukis need a bit more physical activity than the Whippet, so an owner looking to get one of these dogs will need to be prepared for their higher levels of energy.

Whippets generally need a good 45 minutes to an hour of exercise each day, whereas the Saluki requires around 1 – 2 hours.

On the other hand, Whippets tend to be a little more playful than the majority of Salukis, but this is not always true, because in the end it all usually comes down to the individual’s personality.

One difference worthy to note in the care of the two dogs is that Salukis tends to be more independent than Whippets.

This means that the Saluki needs less attention or care on a day-to-day basis, as they are fine on their own and can look after themselves for longer periods of time.

As for intelligence, Whippets and Salukis are averagely intelligent dogs. They learn rather quickly, but their training requires patience and consistency. Their stubbornness may make it trickier to train them than other breeds.

Whippets are sometimes more quick-witted than the Saluki, and may therefore learn at a faster rate than Salukis.

The Main Differences Between The Whippet & The Saluki

Some of the main differences between the Whippet and the Saluki are their general appearance and activity levels.

Salukis are bigger in size, weigh slightly more, and are a little taller.

Their fur is longer on some areas of the body, unlike the Whippet, whose coat is the same throughout the entirety of their body.

In spite of their shorter fur, Whippets tend to shed more than Salukis. Whippets also have a coat that is firm in texture, whereas the Saluki has a coat that is silkier.

Salukis have a very high energy level, while a Whippet has medium to high energy levels. For that reason, Salukis require more physical activity than the Whippet on a daily basis.

Though both have similar intelligence levels, some Whippets can be brighter than the Saluki and tend to grasp things quickly.

On the other hand, they need much more attention and looking after than the independent Saluki.

Which Breed Is Best For You

If you prefer a dog that is independent and can look after itself, a Saluki may be a better option for you.

However, if you need a dog that is active but does not need an extensive amount of exercise, a Whippet may be best for you.

As for choosing a dog with an affectionate and gentle nature, both dogs share this trait.

On the other hand, Whippets often tend to be more playful and outgoing. Both dogs do great with children and other pets, but Whippets are more prone to chasing small prey animals.

Before choosing either of these dogs, you need to have a considerable amount of patience, as both the Whippet and Saluki can show stubbornness while training.

Other Considerations

In spite of there being some significant differences between the two breeds, it needs to be noted that each individual is different in itself.

Whilst Salukis are more energetic than Whippets, it is possible for an individual to be more composed and to prefer resting than a high amount of exercise.

Also, one Saluki can be needier than the other, so this largely depends on the individual dog.

It is important to know your dog and their temperament which is unique to them to be able to properly care for and tend to their individual needs.

Final Thoughts

So, which is the best for you to choose? This all depends on what you are looking for in a dog.

Being sighthounds, the Whippet and Saluki have some similarities in their temperament, nature, and appearance.

The Whippet and Saluki need an owner who is fine with spending as long as they need to in training and one who is able to fit in adequate time every day to exercise either of these dogs.

However, if you decide to buy a puppy Saluki, you must remember that these dogs need more physical activity, and daily jogs and long walks will be a necessity, even if it is rainy, windy, or snowy.

A Whippet does fine with 45 minutes to an hour of exercise, so they make for better apartment dogs, whereas a Saluki will need more space or even a yard.

Hopefully this post has given you a better insight into both of these dogs, and now you know the difference between the whippet vs saluki.

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