Silken Windsprite

Silken Windsprite Breed description: Character & Co


Origin and history of the Silken Windsprite

The Silken Windsprite, sometimes also known as Longhaired Whippet, originates in the United States of America. First breedings of this new dog breed took place in the years 1955 - 1975 in the Whippet Kennel Windsprite of the US-American dog breeder Walter A. Wheeler Jr. The Longhaired Whippets were not recognised as an independent breed by the American Whippet Club (AWC), nor by the American Kennel Club, (AKC), the largest umbrella organisation of purebred dog breeders in the USA, but were classified as hybrids. Also on the part of the largest cynological umbrella organisation FCI a recognition as pedigree dog was refused. In 1986, Walter A. Wheeler Jr. founded the Longhaired Whippet Association (LWA) and published his own standard for Longhaired Whippets. Years later, in 2001, the International Longhaired Whippet Club (ILWC) was officially founded, whose standard differs only slightly from the former standard of the LWA. The first breeding in Germany took place in 2002 and at the same time the Silken Windsprite Club (SWC) was founded, which named the dog breed "Silken Windsprite". The "Verband für das Deutsche Hundewesen" (VDH) has nationally recognised the Silken Windsprite as a pedigree dog.

Banner: Shutterstock / Seregraff
Dog,Mammal,Vertebrate,Dog breed,Canidae,Longhaired whippet,Carnivore,Whippet,Silken windhound,Companion dog, blond longhaired whippet lying on a carpet, tilt ears, dog that is slim and serves as a racing dog, greyhound and dog racing are his passion Two greyhounds sitting in front of a lake, longhaired Whippet Silken Windsprite dogs and a shorthaired Whippet greyhound Silken Windsprite dog blonde with tilt ears sits on a white background, dog with medium length fur, greyhound, racing dog
Alternate Name Longhaired Whippet, Whippet
Origin USA
Life expectancy 12 - 15 years
Care requirements low-maintenance
Activity level average to high
FCI group not recognised
AKC group not recognised
KC group not recognised


  • fast sprinter
  • reacts strongly to movement stimuli
  • eager to learn
  • affectionate cuddler
  • doesn't bark a lot

Characteristic for this breed is their friendliness towards humans but also towards other dogs. The Silken Windsprite is a very peaceful dog with a friendly and balanced character, which hardly ever shows aggression. They can act a little bit distant towards strangers or maybe even show disinterest, but this should not be confused with fear. The Silken Windsprite is an obedient dog, suitable for everyday use and is easy to lead. Although very eager to move, it behaves rather quietly in the apartment. They like to sleep, preferably also in the bed of their human friend. Their true temperament only shows when they run free. On sufficiently large terrain they love to run around with other dogs or chase each one another. Let's see who can keep up the speed of up to 50 km/h.

Attitude and training

Since the blood of greyhounds also flows into the Silken Windsprite, they find great pleasure doing exercise and sports activities.

  • obedience sport or
  • Dogdancing with their humans is great fun for these dogs. All kinds of activities on
  • Agility courses, running on race tracks or or taking part in
  • Lure Coursing is fun for them.

The dogs have a distinct social character, are very people-oriented and need to be incorporated into a family. They also like to be kept in packs of two or more dogs, which also suits their social nature. Furthermore, they are extremely adaptable to family life and don't mind having a routine. On the contrary, they do not like constantly changing procedures and restlessness.


Breed-specific diseases

The Silken Windsprite is a robust and healthy dog. However, due to an earlier crossbreeding with Shelties (smaller breeding form of the Collies) interfering with the breeding line, the MDR1 defect occurs in the breed. This genetic defect causes a hypersensitivity to certain drugs and in the worst case can lead to the dog's death. Another known hereditary disease is Collie Eye Anomaly, an eye disease.

Care and nutrition

The coat of the Silken Windsprite needs only little grooming, brushing them once a week s sufficient. The nutrition is also quite simple. A healthy diet includes meat, carbohydrates and of course minerals and vitamins. You have the choice between fresh food, dry food or both. However, with high-quality dry food, the dog's daily requirement of minerals, vitamins, meat and vegetables can be well covered. It is important to note that the water requirement of dogs fed with dry food is higher than that of dogs fed with fresh food.

Things to know about buying a Silken Windsprite

If you want to buy a Silken Windsprite, it is best to contact the German Sighthound Breeding and Racing Association. There you will find serious breeders. But before buying a puppy, always check the breeding and keeping conditions, because already the insufficient socialisation of a puppy can influence it permanently and cause adaptation problems later on. Unfortunately the breed is not very common in Europe and there are only a few Silken Windsprite breeders. All in all, the Silken Windsprite breed in Germany has good prospects. As the breed is recognised and cared for on a national level by both the VDH and the DWZRV, serious breeders in Germany will increasingly breed dogs through the DWZRV / VDH.

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The dogs have a graceful, elegant appearance, but still give the impression of speed and power. The Silken Windsprite was formerly available in

  1. two sizes: normal (45-55 cm) and
  2. Miniature (according to ILWC standard under 47.0 cm).

The miniature edition is no longer bred. Nowadays, the ideal withers height for males is between 47-55 cm, for bitches between 44-53 cm. The weight of the dogs is 7-16 kg. The life expectancy is 14 years and older.

The athletically built dogs have the classic shape of a greyhound. Deep chest, slightly arched back, long neck and a very slender waist. The silky soft coat is of medium length. On the neck, the back of legs, on the tail and on the ears it is slightly longer. According to the standard, all coat colours and every pattern are permitted. Red or sand coloured dogs are most common. But there are also many silver-grey or black dogs.

Fur length medium
Fur flat coated
Ear shape Tilt-ear
Tail fanned out
Anatomy slim, sporty
Size ♀ 46 - 53 cm
Weight ♀ 9 - 11 kg
Size ♂ 48 - 56 cm
Weight ♂ 11 - 14 kg
Suitable For -


many many

Other medium dogs

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