whippet, greyhound or italian greyhound? which is the better pet?

(36 Posts)
juicychops Sun 27-Jun-10 18:50:12

im desperate for a dog although not yet 100% if its going to happen or not yet as im still doing research.

These are the three dogs i will choose from. the size isn't really an issue its mainly

good or not with kids
good or not with cats
expense to keep
overall rating as a pet

please could you give advice based on your own experiences thanks smile

I don't know much about Italian greyhounds, I have a greyhound and am thinking of getting a whippet.

As far as I can see there really isn't any difference in temprement between whippets and greyhounds, inc kiddy and cat compatability. Greyhounds generally aren't available as puppies as they are bred to race and won't be retired until its found out they're useless at racing. So it may be harder to find a cat friendly greyhound as they will have been trained to chase and won't be used to cats. Saying that I have 2 cats, rabbits, chickens and my ex racer doesn't show any interest. But there can be long waiting lists for a greyhound that is likely to be cat friendly. I was lucky and got one straight away, they thought she would be ok as she was a useless racer but she had to come to me for a "cat test visit" before we knew for sure.

Greyhounds are cheap to feed, £12 for a bag of food that lasts 6 weeks. I'd have thought that whippets would eat the same food, just a bit less of it.

The reason I'd get a whippet next time is size. Greyhounds are big, I have a camper van and when we have the bed pulled out there isn't much floor space for her. Also if we get to a stile when out on walks we have to turn back as I can't pick her up over it. She can't even get through kissing gates, well she refuses to try and is too big for me to pesuade. I'd be able to pick a whippet up.

FiveGoMadInDorset Sun 27-Jun-10 19:04:24

We grew up with whippets from birth until about 15 when the last one died. They were great very gentle, slept down my bed (well mine did) and great family dogs.

FiveGoMadInDorset Sun 27-Jun-10 19:05:21

Oh and we also had a cat, when I was a baby my mother used to find their whippet and the cat in my cot with me.

Want to type you a lovely long answer, but have a banging migrane, so will give you a low down instead.

IG - Wouldn't have with very young children, are quite fragile and don't tend to like much hurley burley, can be very hard to house break, tend to cost £££££.

Whippet - Great family pet, nice size, usually good with animals they are brought up with,l though just because they love and happily sleep with your own cats they may try to get any they see 'off territory', they can do 35mph so need excellent recall training, cheap to feed, need approx 1-2 hours walking a day (but can walk for much longer) some excercise must be free running, you will need a garden that is securely fenced to six foot minimum, very loving, very loyal, cannot be kept off the furniture.

Greyhound - As above but bigger, and a bit more lazy and laid back, still very loving with children but probably less inclined to play, as mentioned unlikely to get a puppy, so really looking at a rescue, you may have to wait for one that is cat friendy, but the do come up fairly often.

For any more advice can I direct you to The Whippet Forum for advice on all things sighthound related smile.

Actually that was quite a long answer, please ask if there was anything else, or ask/search on the forumsmile.

Sorry about the crap spelling etc poorly head.

itsybitsy08 Sun 27-Jun-10 20:32:26

What about a lurcher - we had a greyhound/irishwolfhound. So mellow but lots of fun too, loved running around with the kids and was best friends with my 2yo dd. He died at grand old age of 11 last year, Much missed!
You can also get whippet crosses and they are so so lovley and not as expensive to buy, also not as fragile iykwim?!

controlfreakery Sun 27-Jun-10 20:44:46

bedlington terrier wink

SugarMousePink Sun 27-Jun-10 22:29:35

I have a whippet and a greyhound (actually a greyhound/bedlington terrier) - both very similar in temperament. Very lazy, loyal, loving, affectionate and fabulous with kids. The only thing I would say is please, please, please consider adopting a greyhound - there are thousands out there needing homes and they are such great pets. My rescue sorted out vaccinations, microchipping and a dental exam which was all in the adoption cost (£150).

I don't know where you are in the country but my greyhound came from my nearest rescue place - they normally have greyhounds, whippets and lurchers in for re-homing all at a variety of ages. Link so that you can see what I mean www.tiagreyhounds.org.uk

I would honestly never have another breed of dog as they are such brilliant pets and they are addictive as well...we are currently looking at getting number three from Tia!

purpleduck Sun 27-Jun-10 22:36:55

We got our greyhound as a pup from the Dog's Trust.

purpleduck Sun 27-Jun-10 22:45:31

She's great btw, but only playful about once a day for about 10 mins grin

Vallhala Mon 28-Jun-10 11:18:25

What SugarMousePink said. Absolutely, completely and with knobs on.

[http://www.greytexploitations.com/ Greyt Exploitations] education and campaigns.

[http://www.greyhoundrescue.co.uk/ Greyhound Rescue UK]

Vallhala Mon 28-Jun-10 11:18:57

Oh sorry, soddin' Firefox playing up!

OrmRenewed Mon 28-Jun-10 11:19:52

DOn't know about Italian greyhounds but I would say a whippet. I love them all but I've heard some horrible stories about greyhounds and cats hmm

juicychops Mon 28-Jun-10 12:11:18

thanks everyone so much for your responses.

i think i will rule out the italian greyhound for now. i would prefer something bigger anyway. i would definately be rescuing a dog as would much raather do that than buy off a breeder.

i want one now!! but cant until i move into a bigger house next year with an enclosed garden - at the moment there is a walkthrough bit to the gardens either side. which gived me plenty of time to do more research. i have looked up insurance and its not as much as i thought it would be either.

what about greyhound whippet cross? there were quite a few of them on various websites for sale

CountryGirl2007 Mon 28-Jun-10 12:33:23

I would go for a greyhound or a lurcher. rescues are full of them both unfortunatly.

There are cat friendly ones available, they get on great with children and other dogs, they (greyhounds) also have the benefit of being very genetically sound so don't suffer from hereditary diseases like some other breeds, which could be considered good for costs as it may help to keep the vet bills down!

I personally don't think an italian greyhound or a whipped would be very suitable for children as they are very delicate, especially the IG's as well as being a bit timid, rough play may scare/injure them.

Debs75 Mon 28-Jun-10 12:38:50

I have always wanted a greyhound and a friend nearly got me a non-racer a few years back, a puppy would of been ridiculously expensive due to potential race winnings.

I think out of the 3 you mention a greyhound would be best but what about a lurcher, they are usually easier to find. Then again if you get a rescued/retired greyhound then you get huge brownie points

BorisTheBold Mon 28-Jun-10 12:47:29

I'd say whippet - I have four, along with two small children. Great with kids, sorry but I wouldn't agree that they are too delicate for small children, as long as they've got an "escape route" when it all gets too much they're fine.

Very lazy dogs, until you take them out! From experience I'd say that dogs are much more obediant than bitches.

Beware though - they're not keen on sleeping on the floor and will take over beds/couches etc.

Whippets arn't 'delicate' in the slightest, Iggies maybe yes, but not Whippets, for alot of owners they are still a working or racing dog!

Vallhala Mon 28-Jun-10 22:20:43

Oh, it may be worth having a look at/word with LurcherLink (online, given up with trying to post links!) too. Kaye, the owner, and her volunteers and members are very knowledgable and helpful and who knows, you may just find your dream dog on there.

Tortoise Mon 28-Jun-10 22:29:29

Had my greyhound for 2 yrs now. As others have said, great with children and other dogs, very lazy and take over the sofa. Mickey has laid claim to one sofa and always sleeps there! He hates cats and barks madly if he sees one (although i believe it is rare for a GH to bark!).
Not too bad with our rabbit and guinea as long as the hutch is shut. DD2 once opened the hutch when he was outside and he leapt in and grabbed the guinea pig. Luckily didn't actually pierce its skin and dropped it when i shouted!

He doesn't play much but does like chasing a ball if it is a squeaky one. He loves anything that squeaks and soft toys!

I got him from the Retired Greyhound trust Devon branch. Would love another one day but have also taken on a friend jack russell!

Tortoise Mon 28-Jun-10 22:30:45

Oh and be warned, their wind can clear a room in seconds! grin and they produce poo alot and in big piles!!

Vallhala Mon 28-Jun-10 22:41:29

Blimey Tortoise, yours is an odd Grey! He barks? Never heard a peep from the one I fostered, the friend's I dog-sat for or those at the rescue I help at.

AND your chap gets on with a little dog and doesn't consider him an odd looking cat?

Very odd!

Tortoise Mon 28-Jun-10 22:44:15

Yep he barks very loudly! Rare GH indeed lol. Luckily not often! Mainly at cats.
He get on ok with Patch (JR). I think he finds him a bit OTT and he has so much more energy than Mickey. He does like it that Patch licks in his ears grin.

SugarMousePink Wed 30-Jun-10 20:17:12

Maybe consider a pair as they like the company and another dog to play with...it's very sweet as they curl up on top of each other and go to sleep in a big heap!

Can't recommend them highly enough - TBH the whippet/lurcher/greyhound breeds are so similar (generally) in temperament that the only real difference is size! Good luck and I hope you rescue a lovely dog or two?!...

larahusky Wed 30-Jun-10 20:25:11

Italian Greyhounds as well as being delicate and expensive are very difficult/impossible to house train - they hate going outside to wee.

I have a whippet and have always had whippets and lurchers. Lovely dogs

juicychops Thu 01-Jul-10 11:16:28

i was talking to my dp about dogs the other day and he doesn't mind us getting dogs when we move but he would like to choose one of the dogs. I will get a greyhound/lurcher but he would like an alsatian. i love them too and that is fine with me but will these two breeds be ok together?

we'd get the alsatian from a puppy hopefully so the dogs would grow up being together.

do you think this would be ok for both dogs involved?

juicychops Thu 01-Jul-10 18:21:33


seashore Thu 01-Jul-10 18:27:24

We are Maybe getting a dog in Autumn, and from our research we figured a whippet would be best, they are meant to be great with children, and don't have smelly wet dog coat (I have hay fever) and also are not too bad at shedding, and once they get a good daily walk are meant to be good at relaxing.

purpleduck Thu 01-Jul-10 21:42:32

my greyhound barks like a crazy thing - seriously!!

SugarMousePink Thu 01-Jul-10 22:30:15

seashore whippets and greyhounds very similar - I have one of each and the only real difference is size. They are both great for shedding as hair is generally very fine and quite sparse (although individuals can vary!). Don't need alot of walking - 2x 15-20 min strolls per day is fine. They will run about like mad for a bit then settle down as they are generally very lazy dogs!

juicy shouldn't be a problem as greys are generally very friendly and laid back dogs who will get on with just about anything (even cats if you train them from a young enough age). Would suggest that the alsatian is as young as possible so that he/she can be trained. They won't ever catch your greyhound but they are heavier and stronger! My parents have a rottweiler who adores my two and we have never had any problems - in fact the only time we've had an issue was with a staffy, and unfortunately they aren't generally renowned for liking other dogs!

jillhastwoponies Fri 02-Jul-10 00:36:38

Italian greyhounds lovely but very delicate with snappy litle bones.

whippet a good size, nice dogs.

Whippets are wonderful - get a whippet!

Mine certainly doesn't need 2 hours exercise a day, though he is six now. In fact he is very reluctant to leave the house at all if it is cold/raining.

IMO it is impossible to keep whippets off furniture, and they can have velcro-like tendencies. Ours can never seem to snuggle quite close enough!

They don't smell or shed much hair and so are good pets for the fastidious.

Boris the Bold - 4 whippets?!? I am envy.

BorisTheBold Fri 02-Jul-10 21:47:20

I agree OFTF, impossible to get them outside if the weather isn't to their liking and we gave up on trying to keep them off the furniture long ago!

Yep - 4 (I must be mental) together with 3 dc and other on the way...(my new mantra "it'll be fine, it'll be fine etc.).

Mine are all pretty old though - 14, 12, 10 and 5. Alought the 12 year old still manages to jump the stair gates at the top and bottom of our staircase, and the top is the stairgate, plus a stair height. Still pretty sprightly for a bunch of old duffers grin

BorisTheBold Fri 02-Jul-10 22:06:50

There some pics of the dogs (in amongst the kids) on my profile if you need swayed anymore to get a whippet wink

Ronie Tue 17-Jul-12 00:37:31

I have never been a dog lover, my son has badgered for the last three years for a whippet (of all dogs), I eventually gave in, if only I'd known what a fantastic pet our dog would have been - wish I'd siad yes three years ago, it's a myth you have walk/run whippets and greyhounds for miles a day - just make sure you give them reasonable exercise every day - they sleep the rest of it and when she isn't asleep our little whippet is the most loving, bidable, affectionate dog anyone could ever with for. I'm a total whippet convert!!!

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