Home » Dog Breeds » Whippets » Are Whippets High Maintenance? (What To Expect + Tips)

Are Whippets High Maintenance? (What To Expect + Tips)

Pawscessories is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Maybe you’re considering getting a whippet or you’re just curious whether or not whippets are high maintenance dogs. 

You’ve probably heard about their loving, calm, and gentle nature but do these awesome character traits come at a price? 

Are Whippets High Maintenance:

Whippets are not high maintenance dogs. Whippets need very little compared to other breeds to make them happy and to keep them healthy. Whippets require very little grooming, moderate exercise, are easy to train, and can be fully self-sufficient without much effort or worry from their owners.

In this post you’ll discover:

  • How much maintenance a whippet requires & what to expect
  • Why whippets are not high maintenance dogs
  • 6 things that can make whippets become high maintenance (#1 & #5 are most common!)
  • And much more

Let’s dive in…

Are Whippets High Maintenance

Whippet Maintenance Level + What To Expect

Overall a whippet is a breed that is very low maintenance.

There are times whippets may become high maintenance dogs if improperly trained or cared for.

Whippets are adaptable, affectionate, kid-friendly, dog friendly, have good health, low shredding & drooling, are easy to train, and are very quiet (rarely barking).

Here is a few specific areas of maintenance you can expect to have with a whippet (and the level of attention they will need):

Whippets & Exercise – Average Maintenance

How much you need to exercise a whippet is pretty average despite their high energy when outdoors. 

They are very calm & sleepy inside and some owners misinterpret this as them being too sleepy for exercise.

This causes many to think they need less exercise since they are “sleepy” and don’t appear to need to burn any energy.

Whippets as calm as they are indoors need daily exercise just as every other dog.

To exercise them doesn’t require a ton of time but this is something that needs to happen at least once daily.

A good tip is to teach your whippet fetch. This came to burn their energy much quicker than walking (which takes about 60 minutes).

This makes exercising them easy. All you really need to do is throw a ball for them to chase for 30 minutes.

Indoor Play Time – Low Maintenance

Whippets are the ultimate couch potato. Indoors you can expect a whippet to be cuddly, and sleepy majority of the time.

If you are relaxing you will find whippets tend to follow suit.

Whippets tend to play off their owners, so if you want to play with them indoors they would be happy to play.

If you are excited and full of energy they will respond accordingly.

Speaking with whippet owners you will find many love their cuddly, sleepy nature. 

It makes coming home and relaxing that much better.

Grooming Whippets – Low Maintenance

One of the best parts of owning a whippet is their lack of shedding and how clean they are.

Whippets require very low maintenance when it comes to grooming.

They need their nails trimmed, teeth brushed, and the occasional bath. 

Compared to other dogs they are one of the easiest when it comes to grooming.

One of the things many whippet owners say is that their whippet will typically avoid getting dirty unless racing.

This means they not only stay clean and require less bathing but they keep your house cleaner than other dogs!

Which leads me to the next point.

Related Reading: 8 Reasons Why Your Whippet Is Shedding So Much + 4 Tips

Cleaning Up After Whippets – Low Maintenance

You’ll find owning a whippet does not add much additional cleaning.

For the most part whippets don’t bring much dirt into homes and tend to stay pretty clean.

Overall this means less time spent cleaning up after them.

Some whippets can be destructive and cause problems if they lack daily activity or develop anxieties.

Aside from that, they keep things pretty clean if you compare them to some other breeds.

Budget For A Whippet- Average Maintenance

The time and money needed to keep your whippet healthy and happy is average.

Since they require little grooming you won’t be spending any money for that aside from a few products here and there.

The biggest fees will be vet bills and food.

Whippets have gentle skin that if cut, can tear easily which can add to vet bills.

In addition, they are prone to food allergies that can increase the price of food when needing special food for their sensitive stomach.

The last thing to consider in the budget to upkeep their health and happiness is accessories to keep them warm.

Whippets have low body fat and thin fur so they may require a jacket or jumper to keep them warm in cold environments.

Training A Whippet – Average Maintenance

This is one area where it really depends. Some whippets are extremely smart and can be easily trained.

Others can be stubborn and difficult. As young teenagers and puppies they can be difficult to control.

They have slightly above average intelligence but below average eagerness to please. This puts them right in the middle for ease of training.

However, obedience and recall training can sometimes be difficult with whippets. 

Some whippets are smart enough to decide if they want to listen or not, depending if they think listening to you suits them.

Overall training will take the most time and dedication for the first year but once they have some basic training, less time will be required here.

Whippet Health Issues – Low Maintenance

Healthcare issues are usually pretty low for the whippet breed.

They actually have a lifespan of 12-15 years, which goes to show how healthy they actually are.

Whippets have fewer genetic health conditions compared to many other breeds.

All dogs have a chance to get sick so this is always something to consider.

6 Things That Can Make Whippets High Maintenance

1) Sensitive Stomachs & Food Allergies

Whippets can sometimes have sensitivities to food.

This can make getting them to eat a big frustration. It can take time to test many different foods to find the right one.

In some cases you may need to get the more expensive dog food specific for sensitive stomachs.

Common ingredients in dog foods that can cause an allergic reaction are:

  • Beef
  • Dairy
  • Wheat
  • Chicken
  • Egg
  • Lamb

2) Some Whippets Are Stubborn

If you have ever tried training a stubborn dog you know how frustrating it can be.

They don’t listen and it doesn’t matter what you do. It takes time, a LOT of patience, and consistency.

A stubborn whippet can be difficult to train and hard to make obedient.

If they don’t feel like listening its probably because they don’t think listening benefits them enough.

The key here is having something irresistible to them. 

This can be something like a favorite toy, special treats, playtime outside, etc.

You can get any dog to listen if you have something they really want.

Related Reading: Are Whippets Easy To Train? The Truth + Mistakes & Tips

3) Whippets Can Be Prone To Injury

Just as a whippet’s personality is very soft and gentle, their skin takes on a similar trait.

A whippets skin is gentle and soft, so it can be easily cut and torn open. This makes even little cuts problematic.

Some whippets are just prone to accidents which add to the level of care they require.

4) Get Cold Easily

If you’ve read anything about a whippet you’ll know they get cold very easily.

Some more than others and may even require added protection outside and even inside.

So, if you like to keep the temperature cool in your home, you may need to dress up your whippet, or make sure they have a blanket.

5) Can Develop Separation Anxiety

This is probably one thing that whippets tend to develop more than other dogs.

They love their owners so much that they develop separation anxiety when their owners leave.

This can cause them to whine, or be destructive when you are gone.

This is why a whippet needs early socialization to build confidence and independence.

The last thing you want is a needy, clingy whippet that you can never leave without having repercussions.

A good tip if you leave the house often is to get them a companion to keep them company, this can solve the problem.

Whippets thrive on companionship.

Related Reading: Is Separation Anxiety Common In Whippets? The Truth + Tips

6) Common Whippet Health Issues

Although whippets don’t typically have a whole lot of medical problems aside from allergies, there are some conditions to consider.

A whippet with any medical problem may increase the amount of time needed for their needs to be met.

Here is a list (in order) of 20 of the most common to least common health conditions, taken from a group of whippet owners:

  1. Heart Murmur
  2. Cryptorchidic/Cryptorchidism
  3. Epilepsy
  4. Pancreatitis
  5. Steroid Responsive Meningitis-Arteritis (SRMA)
  6. Irregular Mitral Valve
  7. Hypothyroidism
  8. Corns
  9. Bully Whippet Syndrome
  10. Immune-Mediated Hemolytic Anemia (IMHA)
  11. Inflammatory Bowell Disease (IBD)
  12. Dilated Cardiomyopathy
  13. Overbite
  14. PRA Cataract
  15. Lymphoma
  16. Cushing Syndrome
  17. Neck Hernia
  18. Vestibular Syndrome
  19. Paralysis
  20. Immune-Mediated Polyarthritis

Other posts you might find interesting:

Can Whippets Live & Sleep Outside? 6 Dangers + 5 Tips

5 Reasons Whippets Make Great Apartment Dogs + 7 Tips

5 Ways Whippets Can Live With Cats Peacefully + 5 Risks