Whippets and collies are quite similar breeds in some ways, but quite different in others. Both are fast, both have very strong chasing instincts, and both need lots of attention and exercise, but whippets are sighthounds also share some important differences which give the whollie (whippet/collie cross) some interesting characteristics of their own.
Border Collie / Whippet Mixes are roughly two feet tall, have a small frame, and can weigh up to 40lbs (18kg). Since collies and whippets are both fast and agile, intelligent, and highly trainable, these breeds make an excellent crossbreed. Collie whips are sometimes called ‘Whollies’, and can look more like a collie or a whippet depending on their genetics.
In this article, we’re going to look at the whollie breed and learn everything there is to know about them. We’ll cover their temperament, physical characteristics, what it takes to look after them, and how they compare to a regular collie or whippet.
What is a Whollie?
A whollie is a mixed-breed dog from a whippet and a collie. Whollies are also known as whippet/collie mixes, whippet/collie crosses, or collie-whips. Whollies can come from any type of collie, but most often come from border collies. Due to their high intelligence and loyalty, they are a popular choice of mixed-breed family pets for active families.
A Border Collie/Whippet mix (also called “collie whips”, whippet collies” or ”whollies”) typically has the colors of a Border Collie and the physique of a Whippet.
However, appearance often depends on the parents’ genes and it really is the luck of the draw as to what your ‘collie whip’ will look like.
Whippet/collie crosses weigh an average of 40 pounds and grow up to 2 feet in height. They have a short-haired coat and often have a curly tail!
Whippet/collie mixes have a very unique appearance and because of their slender physique, they are often mistaken for puppies even well into their senior years.
Do Whippet / Collie Mixes (Whollies) Make Good Pets?
Whippet/Collie Mixes make great pets! Whollies are great dogs for active families and outdoorsmen due to their love of the outdoors and also their friendly nature towards people. They get on great with kids and the whollie will happily be involved in all of the chaos of family life.
They need plenty of room to exercise (both physically and mentally), moderate grooming, and adequate socialization.
They’re also a good choice for people with mild allergies due to the limited shedding of their short-haired coats.
Due to their mixed genes, they suffer from minimal health concerns. First-time dog owners should be able to care for a whippet/collie crossbreed just fine as long as they can meet the dog’s basic requirements.
Benefits of adopting a collie cross-breed
Mixed breeds, such as the collie/whippet mix, are a great choice to consider when adopting a dog.
Collie Cross-Breeds tend to be at lower risk for genetic conditions in comparison to purebreds and most live longer with fewer health complications. Mutts are also safe from puppy mills, where unethical breeding and abuse take place. Even so, if you’re buying a dog instead of adopting, mixed breeds often cost less than pedigree breeds.
Lastly, mutts are one of a kind! The interesting part of owning a mutt is finding out more about its genetic history.
Some online services can even test your dog’s DNA and send back the results in the mail. Fun!
Whippet Border Collie Temperament
Whippet collie mixes (whollies) are among the best of the best when it comes to temperament and personality. They are welcoming towards strangers, very loving, great with children, energetic, eager to please, and enjoy bonding with their owners.
This makes them an excellent family dog. Whippet collies love the outdoors but they do have a high prey drive and a hunting instinct. This means they love a good chase! They should be fenced in a large yard or watched closely so they don’t run off in pursuit of a shell-shocked squirrel.
In short, whippet/collie crosses are great for outdoorsy individuals, energetic families, or hunters looking for a sighthound sidekick!
Whippet / Border Collie Mix Friendliness
The border collie/whippet mix is exceptionally friendly towards people that they know and trust. However, they can be a little nervous and unsure around strangers which can manifest itself in barking.
The ”collie whip” is also known as a velcro dog because they stick by your side and they just love lapping up your love.
If you thought going to the bathroom alone was sacred, think again. Whollies have no sense of personal boundaries and quite frankly, the closer, the better.
Whippet / Border Collie Exercise Requirements:
Both Border Collies and Whippets are high-energy animals. They love to run, play, and chase smaller
critters. Whippet/collie mixes must have time and space for exercise!
Providing at least two hours of off-leash exercise every day is essential to their happiness and well-being. If you are unable to commit this amount of time then your collie-whip may find other (often destructive) ways as an outlet for their energy.
As mentioned before, this breed pairs best with an active family, and young children could be this dog’s best friend!
Because Border Collies are known for their high intelligence, collie cross-breeds like whollies often inherit this trait and are also quite intelligent. They’ll enjoy games like fetch and agility training. Your whippet/collie cross will also benefit from play dates with other dogs! This breed’s energy is contagious and will make for some great memories.
Are Whippet / Collie Mixes Hypoallergenic?
Unfortunately, whippet/collie crosses are not hypoallergenic, however, a collie whippet cross sheds less than purebred collies so can be a good option as long as you’re willing to pop an antihistamine daily.
Border Collies are not hypoallergenic mainly due to their long coats and frequent shedding. Whippets might have a shorter coat, but they are not completely hypoallergenic either.
If you only suffer from mild allergies to dogs, a whippet/collie mix may not trigger as many reactions as other dogs. Some whippet-collie crossbreeds naturally take after their Whippet side and have shorter coats, which is a plus.
The best thing to do, however, is to groom your dog frequently to prevent shedding. A healthy coat equals a happy hound and also a happy human as less doggy dander will be present so everyone can breathe easy!
Are Whippet / Collie Mixes High or Low Maintenance?
Whippet/collie mixes (whollies) are not low maintenance, but not entirely high maintenance, either.
They need at least two hours of exercise per day to satisfy their energy requirements and also benefit from regular mental stimulation games to keep their minds occupied. Whippet/collie crossbreeds often have shorter coats that are easier to maintain than a purebreed collie.
As they age, they will need less exercise but it’s important to have a large outdoor space for playtime, whether it be your own yard or a nearby park.
As for grooming, whippet collie crosses will need more frequent grooming than their purebred whippet relatives, but less grooming than a purebred collie. Their coats are more similar to that of a Smooth Collie, meaning they tend to shed year-round.
Feeding should consist of either store-bought dog food or raw foods. Collie whippet crossbreeds benefit from scatter feeding, snuffle mats, or other mental stimulation that allows them to exercise their olfactory system.
Border Collie / Whippet Intelligence
Whippet/Collie crossbreeds are very intelligent due to their collie genes. Collies are smart, obedient, and excel in training. They love learning experiences and making their owners happy! Any mixed breed which includes collie genes is almost always likely to inherit that infamous collie intelligence.
The intelligence of the collie-whip has many benefits including when it comes to house training, but you’ll be able to teach your whippet collie some cool tricks as well. They are well-behaved, eager to please, and love being engaged in all types of learning.
This ensures that you two will have an unbreakable bond. Also, considering the breed’s hunting instincts, being able to respond to commands will keep him/her much safer while adventuring.
Pictures of Whippet/Collie Cross
Whippet collie crosses generally have the slender physique of a whippet but the coat of a collie. They pretty much look like a mini collie.
These dogs will have a smaller head than their purebred collie cousins. They have long, thin legs and they often sport a curly tail!
However, as always, a mixed breed is a mixed bag and you never really know what they will look like until they have fully developed.
Whippet / Border Collie Neediness
Border Collie / Whippet Mixes are generally very needy dogs. They really do need constant attention and like to be at the heart of the action! Say goodbye to alone time as whollies hate to be alone and much prefer to be snuggled up to their humans.
This level of neediness comes from their collie genes. Check out our ‘Collie Neediness‘ article for more information on how to live with a needy dog.
Where can I get a Whippet / Collie Mix?
Whippet collies are not as common as other mixed breeds, but there is a chance you’ll come across one in
need of a loving home either from a breeder or from a local shelter.
You might find them in the care of breeders, however, choose breeders carefully. While all puppies need homes, adult dogs in shelters are just as important. Consider adopting if you come across a whippet collie at your local animal shelter.
Remember that just because a dog looks like a mix between a Border Collie and Whippet, doesn’t always mean it is. Greyhounds are similar to Whippets and are also bred with Border Collies. Both are wonderful mixed breeds!
Whippet / Collie Health Concerns
The lifespan of a whippet-collie mixed breed is about 15 years – the same as a pug or a Yorkshire terrier. As with most
smaller dog breeds, their size contributes to their long life expectancy.
Whippet collies are susceptible to a range of health problems such as epilepsy and hip dysplasia. The risk of epilepsy comes from the dog’s Whippet side and is one of the most common problems for Whippets. They are also at risk for collie eye anomaly, a genetic eye condition that affects Border Collies.
Conclusion: Collie-Whippet Characteristics
Collie-whippet mixes are…
- Full of Energy
- Require lots of Exercise
- Require lots of Mental Stimulation
- Good with children and other pets
- Very strong chase instinct
- Highly Intelligent
- Not good for people with allergies
- Around two feet (60cm) tall
- Up to 40lbs (18kg) in weight
- Prone to Separation Anxiety
- Very easy to train
Collie/Whippet mixes really offer you the best of both worlds. You will get the friendly nature of the whippet combined with the unrivaled intellect of a collie.
This makes them excellent pets for active families or individuals. They like to get involved in everything and their love of playtime is immense.
The spirited nature of the ‘Collie Whip’ is infectious and their zest for life really will make you see the world in a more positive light.