Whippets are built for running on the ground. They absolutely love zoomies and a good run across a wide-open field. But, do whippets like water? And can whippets swim? The answers to those questions are not so simple because of various factors. Let’s dive in and find out. (Pun intended).
First Question: Do whippets like water?
Well, water is too general of a word. The kind of water is a factor.
Rain is pretty much despised by most whippets. They do not like going outside in the rain. Mine will stop and the door, turn around and look at me like I’m crazy. I know I’m not alone in that situation.
Some people get raincoats for their whippets. It helps keep them warm and dry.
The only exception I’ve personally witnessed was when it came to whippet racing. Their desire and happiness to race over-rode their hatred of rain. Whippets were running in the rain and splashing through puddles on the track.
Baths are another generally disliked water situation by whippets. Fortunately, they don’t have to be bathed often.
Unless they roll in smelly things, run through mud, or get sprayed by skunks. But that’s a whole different subject.
Puddles vary depending on the circumstances. Some whippets do not like their feet getting wet at all. I’ve seen whippets go around a puddle while on a walk.
And, of course, I’ve also seen whippets run through puddles while chasing or playing. Did you see the above photo? Mine will run through a muddy puddle to catch a toy. But the opposite when just walking around the yard.
So it appears that play and fun over-rides wet feet avoidance.
That brings us to big bodies of water such as pools, lakes and the ocean. And, oh my, does this ever bring some great answers with awesome pictures.
Here is what actual whippet owners said when I posed the question in a Facebook whippet group:
Lindsay: My whippet loves the water!
Diane: Cochiti held the world record for distance jumping off a dock.
Rebecca: These are my two Whippets with their first swimming attempts. The one paddling actually really likes water and is able to keep her head above water, but I wouldn’t call it swimming. The other one is really good in swimming, but not so fond of water. Both will go inside for cooling down. But it has to be quite warm outside.
Lisande: Some do….
Lisande: Some don’t…lol
Bailey: My Romeo can’t stand water, he tolerates baths and that’s about it. I have to put a raincoat on him and a snowsuit during wet weather or he refuses to even go to the bathroom.
Stephanie: Mine likes the shower water… always tries to get in when I am in the shower. No pics because that’s a private location!!! LOL
Julie: They’re good at surfing also!
Emily: Happy whippet in the pool!
Johnna: Loves the water
Ashley: Nitro does not like the pool.
Sherri: Grace can. She just prefers not to.
Amy: My Pearl is impossible to keep OUT of the pool in the summer. She swims by herself. She drops toys in JUST so she can go in for them. She loves the water!
Benjamin: Two of my five loved the water. Three not so much. But those two literally jumped in every time water was near regardless of the temp or depth
Heather: Bramble says, “Please. No.”
Meredith: Water “retriever” Harry
Laura: Yes they do if they get accustomed to it as puppies!
Janet: These two are gone. Miss you Bessire & Tessa but have another 2 that are crazy for the hose.
Lisa: Whippets being the ultimate athlete tend to excel at water sports. They hold a LOT of records for dock diving (including speed retrieve, distance jump and air retrieve) between NADD and DockDogs. So yeah, they kinda like the water and can swim like a fish.
Chelsea: Lol they can swim. But ours HATE water.
Amy: With our dogs WATER=MURDER!!! So ridiculous!
Christa: Ours think they will melt in the water.
Jen: My girl Beans was the first surfing whippet in the world and loves it. She just retired from competitions this past summer but still gets to surf in the nicer oceans plus paddleboard.
She showed interest at 4 months and surfed for 6 full years, including participating in the Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge (invite only) and winning the International SurfDog Championship in 2016.
She has always loved water.
Julie: They do or they do not. That is what I have found.
I totally agree with Julie. Whippets will either love playing and swimming in water or want to stay as far away from it as possible.
Carolyn shared this incredible photo of Fleur:
Melissa’s whippet running in from a swim:
So, do whippets like water? Let’s sum up:
- Bath: Usually not.
- Rain: Usually not.
- Puddle: Sometimes.
- Big water such as a pool, lake, or ocean? It depends on the whippet. Just like people, some like it and others do not.
Can whippets swim?
Yes, whippets can swim. Some do it naturally and others may need swim lessons. Be careful and safe when introducing your dog to swimming.
It’s always a good idea to put a proper life vest on a whippet when on a boat. While whippets can swim, they may not be able to swim a big distance to shore. Likewise, they can tire and not able to stay afloat for a long time.
Do whippets like to swim? When it comes to whippets enjoying swimming, it is up to each one. As you’ve seen from above, some love going for a swim and others simply don’t care for it at all.
But, obviously, Comet loves to go swimming and fetch balls in the pool:
Robin’s whippet loves fetching toys in the pool too:
What is your experience with whippets and water or swimming? Please comment below so we can all learn from each other.
Many sincere thanks to all the kind whippet owners for allowing me to share their quotes and pictures for this article. I am eternally grateful.
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We live by the lake so having a whippet that swims, especially in summer, would be very nice! We tried multiple times to introduce him to water; even putting him inside (with support). He can actually swim, but just wants to go back to shore. If we give him some ham AND put him into the water, he will swim to the ham, but other than that zero. Any suggestions?
Perhaps find someone who has a dog that loves to swim and have them join you when taking your whippet to the lake. It may spark more interest when he sees another dog or dogs having fun in the water.
Scout loves mucking around in the lake. She’s a natural swimmer but only paddles to get to something (usually me), not for the enjoyment of paddling. She loves zooming in and out, and does that hilarious slapping / splashing with her front legs like the video above from Becca 😂
She has a raincoat and is keen to go out in drizzle, but I’ve never tried heavier rain. Totally happy running around on wet grass and through puddles.
She sulks about bath time – ears down and back, gives me the old hound sadface \••/
But will stand and tolerate it. Mind you, she gets bathed in my shower which has a detachable head so her head doesn’t get splashed. Warm, gentle, and a special “conditioner” which helps her sensitive skin. She doesn’t know how spoilt she is 🙄
Zephyr, Milo, and Luke are not happy about bath time at all. They try to hide to get out of it. They totally give the sad face too.
Nice little article, next time let us all know you’re publishing and will help share
By the way the whip it on the surfboard fount yo shore is Lincoln, our dog.