8 Fastest Dog Breeds & Their Speeds

Ever wonder which dog breeds can give you a run for your money—or perhaps even outpace a deer in a sprint? These canine speedsters are built for agility, boasting muscular bodies and a drive that propels them to impressive velocities. Knowing which breeds lead the pack in speed can be fascinating and useful.

Let’s explore the world of the fastest dog breeds, their incredible abilities, and the nature behind their need for speed. Here, we break down the top contenders known for their lightning-fast paws.

1. Greyhound

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Greyhounds are the undeniable champions of dog speed, reaching up to 45 miles per hour (ref). This breed is sleek and aerodynamic, with a heart larger than their body size, giving them a serious advantage in the speed department.

These dogs are not just about speed, though. Greyhounds are calm and friendly when they’re not on the track, making them great companions. They enjoy lounging as much as sprinting, embodying a laid-back lifestyle and high-octane athleticism.

2. Saluki

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The Saluki is another breed that offers some serious speed, reaching up to 42 miles per hour (ref). Originating from the Fertile Crescent, they were bred for hunting, using their incredible speed and endurance to chase down prey.

Beyond their speed, Salukis are known for their grace and dignity. They are often described as cat-like in their independence and grooming habits. They are loyal pets that form deep attachments to their families.

3. Afghan Hound

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With their dignified appearance, Afghan Hounds might not look like sprinters. However, appearances can be deceiving. These dogs can reach up to 40 miles per hour, combining their speed with an incredible sight to hunt down their prey (ref).

Afghan Hounds have an air of aristocracy, but don’t let their elegant looks fool you. They excel in various canine sports, including lure coursing, which showcases their speed and agility.

4. Vizsla

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Vizslas are not only fast, reaching up to 40 miles per hour, but they’re also incredibly versatile (ref). This breed is known for its ability to perform well in different dog sports, from agility to obedience.

Their lean bodies and boundless energy make Vizslas ideal for active families. They love being involved in activities and are eager to please their owners, making them a joy to train.

5. Whippet

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The Whippet, often called a “miniature Greyhound,” can dash up to 35 miles per hour (ref). Due to their impressive speed and keen sight, they were originally bred for racing and rabbit hunting.

Whippets are gentle and affectionate, making excellent family pets. They enjoy snuggling as much as they do running, offering their owners the best of both worlds.

6. Borzoi

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Borzois might carry themselves with an aristocratic grace, but when it’s time to run, they can unleash a top speed of around 35 to 40 miles per hour (ref). These dogs were bred for hunting and are highly skilled at chasing fast-moving prey.

Despite their athleticism, Borzois are known for their calm demeanor and are often found lounging in comfort when indoors. They are sensitive and intelligent, forming close bonds with their owners.

7. Dalmatian

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Dalmatians are perhaps best known for their distinctive spotted coats and historical role as carriage dogs. They can reach up to 30 miles per hour, a testament to their enduring stamina and muscular build.

These dogs are highly energetic and thrive on exercise and mental stimulation. Dalmatians are loyal companions who excel in various dog sports and activities, embodying the spirit of versatility.

8. Jack Russell Terrier

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While they may be small, Jack Russell Terriers are mighty, capable of reaching up to 25 miles per hour. They possess a boundless energy and a fearless nature, often described as little balls of lightning.

Jack Russells are as intelligent as they are fast. They excel in agility courses and other canine sports that challenge their minds and speed. Their zest for life makes them lovable companions for those who can keep up with their pace.

Remember, a speedy dog requires ample space and exercise to stay healthy and happy. Always have the right environment and lifestyle to cater to these energetic breeds.

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Davin is a jack-of-all-trades but has professional training and experience in various home and garden subjects. He leans on other experts when needed and edits and fact-checks all articles.