To leash or not to leash? Ah! That, is the question.There's no doubt that a Whippet can run fast. Faster than you for sure. Being a sighthound, these dogs with their high prey drive will see a bunny and the chase begins. And at over 30 miles per hour, be gone in a flash. But there's something sad about never letting your dog off the leash for a good stretch of the legs. So, back to the original question: Leash or not?The answer is not a simple one. As with any dog, can you be 100% sure that your dog will come to you immediately when you call it? This is known as recall. You have to train your dog to do this. Some dogs are quite trustworthy and better at this than others. You must have a good relationship and trust with your animal. You must also take into consideration the environment your dog is in. Are you close to a really busy road with no fence? Is there a lot of wildlife where you are? How about cats and other dogs? Use your common sense.My whippet is let off leash in a very large green belt within the confines of my neighborhood. There are no fences. He has excellent recall and good sense. He never steps off the grass. He loves to play ball and frisbee and fetches very well. However, I am on high alert when he is offleash. If I see people walking alone or with a dog, I will call him to me and leash him up. The overprotective mommie in my is always looking for that stimuli that might make him decide he needs to investigate the situation without me. LOL I keep a little squeaker in my pocket from a murdered stuffed animal and squeak that if he get a bit too far for my liking. When he comes back to me I have a little treat for him. So he's usually very close to me regardless. Those who have a retired greyhound get nervous about this particular topic. With greyhounds, many adoption groups make you sign a contract that you will never let your greyhound off leash - ever. It's understandible. These dogs were bred and trained to run as fast as they can after a lure. And whippets as well lure course and race. So again I say, know your dog. Know it's past and training. Use your common sense.If you do let your dog run offleash, be sure you have your ID tags up to date and your dog microchipped. Also, after a good run, check the pads of the paws and look for stickers or cuts. Don't forget between the toes. For more information and advice, don't forget to visit the Whippet Forums at WhippetTalk.com.
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