Find out all about the Bedlington Whippet (Bedlington Terrier x Whippet) in today’s guide.
It's just one of the many varieties of Lurcher in the world. We discuss their personality traits, health problems, exercise needs, and a whole lot more!
Attributes at a Glance
Bedlington Whippet: Pros & Cons
Here are the most basic positive and negative traits of the Bedlington Whippet. It's hard to summarise a dog in a few points but we've tried our best!
Bedlington Whippet: Overview
The Bedlington Whippet is a Lurcher. The Lurcher is a particular crossbreed that is composed of a dog from the sighthound family mixed with a working dog.
This means there are many varieties of Lurcher. The Bedlington Terrier is specifically the result of the cross-breeding between the Bedlington Terrier and the Whippet.
When you combine the speed and agility of a sighthound like a greyhound or whippet with the intelligence and persistence of a working dog you end up with quite the companion.
This is what makes the Bedlington Terrier popular with both hunters and families across the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Due to this dog’s confusing background, they haven’t received any recognition as a breed. Yet they still have a deep history dating back hundreds of years.
Another well-known trait is their theft of food! Anything left unattended or within this pooches reach, will be savaged!
The Bedlington Terrier is shaped like a Whippet, just fluffier and with very different needs. When cross-bred you end up with the sighthound and agility skills of a Whippet and the hard-working, hunter mentality of the Bedlington Terrier.
Rehoming a Lurcher is always an option so do check your local shelters. If you are more interested in Bedlington Whippet puppies you should try and locate a reputable breeder.
Ensure they have the necessary health certificates and be sure to meet the parents. Try and see what sort of personalities the parents have to get an indication of what their pups may be like.
Bedlington Whippet: History
The Lurcher has a history dating back to the late 14th century. Back then, sighthounds were limited to aristocracy only. Due to this, sighthounds were bred with working dogs to get around the restrictions that were put in place.
In the 1600s many European travelers, including the Romany gypsies were looking to create a silent hunter. This led to the creation of the Lurcher. They would hunt deer, rabbits, hare, and other game, without drawing attention.
A Bedlington Terrier is often described as a lamb look alike. They were named after a mining town in England, Northumberland, and were originally known as ‘Gypsy Dogs’. Dating right back to 1752, the Romany travelers would use these dogs to hunt game.
The Whippet is a sighthound that descended from Greyhounds and originated in the UK. The first use of the breed name Whippet dates back to 1610. They were known as ‘snap dogs’ for how quickly they would approach prey. In the 19th century Whippets then progressed into racing dogs.
There were two types of Whippet, one with short fur and one with a slightly longer and rougher looking coat. This rough coat was due to the cross-breeding with the Bedlington Terrier.
The Bedlington Whippet cross was highly popular in Northumberland and Durham. They are now more commonly known as the more general name of Lurcher.
Related: A cross between a Jack Russell and a Poodle, find out why the Jackapoo is gaining popularity!
Bedlington Whippet: Personality
Bedlington Whippet Cross Temperament:
This dog has always been one of the most popular in the UK and Ireland. Despite not being recognized as an official breed.
They make excellent hunting dogs and are also calm enough to be a family companion. They won’t annoy your ears with the forever sound of barking and are highly sociable.
The Bedlington Whippet personality is quiet and calm by nature. Indoors they make the perfect dog and will always be near your side.
These pooches may have been bred for work, but their ability to adapt into a loving companion is what makes them so well-loved.
Beddy Whippets love their sleep and will need around 12-14 hours. They don’t like being left alone, but you could leave them for around 4 hours as long as their exercise needs are met.
Are Bedlington Whippets Good With Strangers?
A Bedlington Whippet Lurcher is generally a sociable breed. They like human contact and enjoy interaction outdoors. Yet some Beddy Whippets may feel shy or wary of strangers if they haven’t been socialized as a puppy.
Are Bedlington Whippets Good With Children?
Yes, this dog has the ability to become a great family companion! They’re playful and will definitely get involved in some ball games out in the garden.
As they tend to be rather boisterous, especially when puppies, it is best for them to be around children aged 6+. A Beddy Whippet could accidentally knock over toddlers so do keep an eye out for this.
Are Bedlington Whippets Ok With Other Dogs?
This breed is very social and loves to interact with other dogs. However, some very small dogs may trigger their hunting instinct so do be aware. This can easily be trained out of them with regular socialization.
Beddy Whippets can be sole hunters but can also work in packs, which explains their high social needs. Unfortunately, house sharing with cats and other smaller household pets, probably wouldn’t be a great idea for this dog.
Bedlington Whippet: Exercise
A Bedlington Lurcher needs at least 2 hours of exercise each day. They suit more rural areas where they have the space to run free. As puppies, they can be hyperactive, but some Bedlington Whippets do turn into coach potatoes as adults!
These pooches don’t like being left alone and can get into some destructive behaviour when they get bored. You won’t be able to prevent their need to run. So if you can, take them to a large space out in the open.
Beddy Whippets are better suited to rural areas where they can access bigger spaces of land. If you do own a Lurcher in the city, you should only let them exercise off-leash in an enclosed area.
They do have a high prey drive so no matter how strong their recall is, they may go straight for the kill! This is why a Bedlington Whippet’s training is so important. Extendable leads are recommended for this breed type.
Bedlington Whippet: Health
The following health conditions have been related to the Bedlington Whippet Lurcher:
Bedlington Whippet: Intelligence & Training
A Bedlington Whippet is independent and intelligent. This is portrayed in their ability to change job roles, from hunter to family pet.
Socialization must start as early as possible. This breed can become timid if they haven’t been introduced to strangers, other dogs, and new places.
They won’t be aggressive by nature but could become fearful if they lack social skills.
Bedlington Whippet understands commands much quicker than other breeds. Your most important and hardest task will be establishing recall.
No matter how well your dog understands this command, all it takes is the sight of prey and they will be off!
This is a sensitive breed that won’t react well to harsh training techniques or scolding. Food treats would be the best way to get your pooch to listen.
Even though they are known to be thieves of any food within their reach. This breed is one of the easiest to train, yet some impulses may override your dog’s obedience, such as prey and food.
Related: Find out what makes the Pyrenean Mastiff different from other Mastiff breeds.
Bedlington Whippet: Grooming
Bedlington Whippets have rougher more coarse fur compared to other Lurcher crosses. The Bedlington Terrier has a mix of soft and harsh fur whereas the Whippet has a short coat. This gives the Beddy Whippet a fluffier look, yet not as furry as other greyhound mixes.
If you completely shave off the Bedlington Terriers fur, underneath, their body shape resembles the Whippet. This is why many choose not to trim this dog.
A comb would be a better fit for this coat when trying to remove tangles. Other brushes to include would be a strong bristle brush or a widely spaced metal pin brush.
Depending on your pooches fur you may also which to occasionally trim it down. Some sharp scissors or an electric shaver will work fine.
You should aim to wash your Beddy Whippet every 4-6 weeks. At this time you should also clear the entrance to the ear canal from any excess fur and trim around the paw pad. Aim to cut or file your dog’s nails every two months.
Photo of a Lurcher, by Marilyn Peddle, licensed under CC BY 2.0