Last Updated on November 11, 2023 by Linda Richard
Many mixed dogs have similar parent breeds. Some, however, are more fascinating than that. Meet the whippet lab mix – a multifaceted crossbreed. This curious mix is the result of crossing a purebred yellow Labrador Retriever with a purebred Whippet sighthound.
Whippets are a smaller and less common cousin of the famous Greyhound. However, they do have a very similar physique and temperament to their larger brethren. What does this mean for the yellow lab whippet mix or “Whipador”, however? Does this cross of two very different breeds work well as a family pet? Let’s go over the specifics below.
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What Does The Whippet Lab Mix Look Like?
If you see a Whipador on the street you may mistake it for an extra lean yellow lab. Or, if the dog resembles its sighthound parent more, it can look like a well-fed sighthound with a wider head.
In most cases, however, adult Whipadors will usually be about 18.5 to 24 inches tall at the shoulder (47 to 61 cm). Weight-wise they can go anywhere between 25 and 80 pounds (11 to 36 kg) depending on which parent they look like more. Still, it’s very unlikely that a Whipador will ever be as heavy as a Labrador unless you’re actively overfeeding it.
As for their coats, yellow lab whippet mix dogs will either be yellow as their lab parent or will resemble the whippet parent’s colors. These include black, white, brindle, blue, cream, red, and fawn. The coat itself will be double layered and will shed considerably during the two peak seasons in the spring and autumn. Adequate brushing and grooming are obviously required.
The exact structure and shape of the Whipador’s head and body will vary depending on which parent the pup looks more like. Whipadors can be as lean and athletic as a whippet or strong and “filled in” as a lab. They can also be anywhere in between.
Can A Whippet Be Crossed With A Black Or Brown Lab?
Indeed they can, although yellow labs seem to be the most popular option. Crosses with black and brown labs will have the exact same characteristics but will usually have a darker coat color.
How Much Exercise Does A Whipador Need?
As both whippets and labs are very energetic breeds, so is the Whipador. If you’ve decided to get such a dog you’d better be ready for a lot of time in the dog park and frequent hiking trips on the weekends. These dogs need at least a couple of hours in the dog yard a day, preferably more, and divided into at least two separate walks.
Your Whipador should always be on a leash as it will have a very strong prey drive and want to chase everything that moves. Ideally, you’ll have a fully-fenced dog park nearby to unleash your Whipador in once a day. Having a big and fenced yard is also strongly recommended so the dog can run there for a few hours every day.
Hypothetically, this mix can be raised in an apartment but you should spend even more time in the dog park and jogging in the streets to give your Whipador enough exercise.
Whippet Lab Mix Personality and Temperament
The more fascinating aspect of this crossbreed is its temperament. Retrievers and sighthounds are very different and so their cross combines quite a few opposite personality types. As a result, predicting the exact personality of a Whipador pup can be tricky as it will fall somewhere on the spectrum between its two parent breeds.
A Whipador will either be social and outgoing like a lab or aloof but polite with strangers like a whippet. It will also either get along with cats and other non-canine pets like a lab or its strong prey drive will make living with cats impossible.
In most cases, however, a Whipador should be very social and loving toward its human family and it should get along with other dogs. Proper socialization is always required but that’s true for all dog breeds.
Also, you should keep separation anxiety in mind. Both whippets and labs can suffer from separation anxiety if they are left home alone for too long when you’re at work. This problem can include anxiety, stress, disobedience, destructive behavior, and depression.
To avoid it, you should make sure that your Whipador always has company. So, when you’re at work your dog should be with another family member, a dog walker or dog sitter, at a playdate with another dog owner, or you should get a second dog so the two can keep each other company.
Health Characteristics Of The Whippet Lab Mix
Mixed breeds can often have mixed health. That’s because they can either inherit all the common health problems of their two-parent breeds or they can inherit only their best health aspects.
Fortunately for the Whipador, both its parents are very healthy overall. The few things you’ll need to watch out for include:
- Color Dilution Alopecia
- Hemangiosarcoma (skin cancer)
- Autoimmune thyroiditis
- Anesthesia complications
- Hip and Elbow dysplasia
When the dog is healthy and well taken care of, the average whippet lab mix lifespan is between 12 and 15 years. With a bit of luck, it can be even longer than that.
Pros and Cons Of The Whippet Lab Mix Dog
Thus, it is important to weigh well all the Pros and Cons Of The Whippet Lab Mix Dog before making a decision.
Is The Whippet Lab Mix Right For You?
There’s one main factor that determines whether the Whipador is the right pet for you – how much time are you willing to spend jogging and playing outside with your pet? If the answer is north of two hours, you can have a lot of fun with this breed. If not, you’d better look for your future pet elsewhere. These active and playful retriever/hounds can be fantastic, loving, and playful pets as long as you meet their exercise requirements.