Whippets were bred to hunt by sight, coursing game in open areas at high speeds. One can find numerous representations of small greyhound-like hounds in art dating back to Roman times but the first written English use of the word "whippet" with regard to a type of dog was in 1610.

In the United States, the whippet was recognized in 1888 by the American Kennel Club. Early specimens were taken from the race track by dog fanciers of the time and exported all over the world. The whippet's versatility as a hunting, racing, exhibition or companion dog soon made it one of the most popular of the sighthound breeds
Whippets are a medium-size dog averaging in weight from 25 to 40 lb (11–18 kg), with height (under the FCI standard) of 18.5 - 20 inches (47 - 51 cm) for males and 17.5–18.5 inches (44–47 cm) for females.
Whippets are generally quiet and gentle dogs, and may be content to spend much of the day resting.[1] Although especially attached to their owners, they are friendly to visitors.
Whippets have been called a "poor man's racehorse." As their heritage would suggest, whippets are outstanding running dogs and are top competitors in lure coursing, straight racing, and oval track racing.
Given proper exercise, nutrition, and veterinary care, most whippets live for 12 to 15 years.[3] They are generally healthy, and are not prone to the frequent ear infections, skin allergies, or digestive problems that can afflict other breeds.
 Whippet owner should take notice that Whippets are, just like other sighthounds, sensitive to a number of anesthetics. This may be due to their low concentration of body fat.

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