While most people think of the Greyhound when thinking of fast dogs, there are other breeds that are also pretty quick. So whether you are looking for a running partner or an athletic companion dog, stay tuned for some of the fastest dog breeds in the world.
As with any new pet, don’t look at just one trait to determine if a breed is right for you. Do your research and honestly compare the dog's traits with your lifestyle to get the right dog for you and your family.
If you’ve never owned a dog before, the best place to start is by speaking with experts. Talk to a veterinarian, canine behavior specialist, professional dog trainer, groomer or any other doggy expert in your area. Explain what you’re looking for and ask for some breed recommendations.
Check out some books at your local library or do some research online. Search for dogs that tend to have the attributes that you are looking for. Do you want a dog that is good with children? Are you looking for a watch dog? Are you looking for an active breed or one of the slowest dog breeds?
Athletic ability and energy levels are a very important thing to consider. Hopefully, this list of the fastest dog breeds will help you in making a good choice about a dog that will be a good fit for your home.
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25 Fastest Dog Breeds On the Planet
Fastest Dog Breeds Up to 30 Pounds
Although quite a bit smaller, the Whippet (pictured above) is similar in appearance to a Greyhound. In fact, it is also known as the English Greyhound or the “Poor Man’s Greyhound”. At 35 miles per hour, they can almost run as fast as a standard sized Greyhound.
You can still see this dog in action on the race track in many areas. A hare coursing dog, these pups will chase, and probably kill, any small furry animal. Take that into consideration before bringing one home.
2. Jack Russell Terrier
With boundless energy and flexibility, this little dynamite does great in timed obstacle courses. The Jack Russell is curious and alert. They do better in a house where they are not left alone too long.
While this breed is a lot of fun, make sure you are up to the task before bringing one home. Pooches in this breed are always looking to prove their speed and attitude. They love to dig, bark, chase and chew.
3. Italian Greyhound
Another small speedster, the “Iggy” is classified in the Toy group. At 25 miles per hour, these pups make great pets for joggers, but they aren’t just for active people. While they do like playing around, they also like just chilling on the couch.
Not the easiest breed to train, especially in housetraining, you might need to keep pee pads at the ready. If you are looking for a small dog that is more than a lap dog, this may be the one for you.
Fastest Dog Breeds of 30 to 60 Pounds
Made for long days hunting, the Vizsla isn’t just fast, but it has endurance as well. This is a high energy canine that needs to be in an active family. Known as the “Velcro Vizsla”, they become very attached to their owners and don’t do well as an “outside dog”.
At around 40 miles per hour, this swift pooch can give a Greyhound a run for their money. Legend has it that one even beat a Greyhound in a race.
With a job guarding horses and carriages all day, the Dalmatian had to be quick and tireless. While they are loving with their family, like many other guarding breeds, they need to be trained with pack-leader training and well socialized.
Not only are they fast, but they have a ton of energy. They make great fur-babies for people who run, skate, hike or swim. If you have an active family, then this pup may be the perfect dog for you.
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An elegant breed, the Saluki is a sighthound that will retrieve, or kill, prey. Bred by Arabs, its nickname is “The Noble”, and they were considered to be a gift from Allah. These sensitive pooches are independent and need a consistent, but gentle, trainer.
Their love of running and chasing means you need a tall, sturdy fence and a good leash. They will chase kids, animals, and cars. In fact, many have met their death by the wheel of a vehicle.
7. Border Collie
One of the smartest and most popular breeds around, the Border Collie has a lot going for it. One thing is its speed and endurance. While they may not be the fastest, at 20 – 30 miles an hour, they can outrun most people.
This working breed is mainly used for herding. In fact, he tries to herd anything and anywhere. Recent news tells of “Rocky” who herded a bunch of sheep into someone’s kitchen.
8. Alaskan Husky
While not a registered breed, the Alaskan Husky is still well known for its ability to pull sleds. Since there is no official breed standard, they can have a wide variety of looks. The breed was created by mixing other Husky breeds.
The great speeds attainable by this breed have led it to rise to the top of sledding competitions. These furry family members love to cuddle. If bored, they are very destructive. If you own one of these, you need to keep it active.
A muscular breed, these dogs can look intimidating. Actually, nothing is farther from the truth. These canines are loving and playful. They get along with everyone they meet, but their muscles aren’t just for show.
Agile and quick, Boxers are great for playtime and in sports. With excitable and energetic traits, make sure you are up for the challenge before you bring one of these fastest dog breeds home.
10. Australian Shepherd
Although it has the name “Australian” in it, the breed we have today was actually developed entirely in the United States. A herding dog, they have the speed and the smarts to take them to the front of the pack…er, I mean herd.
These friendly canines need room to roam and tasks to perform to be truly happy. With excellent agility and stamina, they even make great competition animals for obstacle courses and racing courses.
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11. Siberian Husky
A traditional sled dog, these fur-babies have speed, endurance, strength, and agility. While wolf-like in appearance, they can come in a wide variety of colors. Don’t let the wolf appearance fool you, they are very friendly and make poor guard dogs.
These double-coated pups like to be busy with outdoor activities, so don’t own one if you live in tropical or sub-tropical locales. Keeping these furry animals in a hot place is cruel and inhumane.
What qualifies as a “Pitbull” is up for debate. What is not up for debate is the fact that it can reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour. The muscles on these pets can propel it forward in a flash. While these canines generally have a bad reputation, they can be generous, loving companions when trained right.
However, they prefer to be the alpha of the pack, and they usually do not like other dogs. Unless you can move 30 mph, you need to make sure this dog is secure.
13. Pharaoh Hound
Developed more than 5,000 years ago, this breed was for hunting gazelle in the African grasslands. They had to be fast. With a strong prey drive and high speeds, this dog must be kept secured at all times.
Once they get going, no amount of shouting will stop these fastest dog breeds. While an old breed, they still maintain original traits. The Pharaoh Hound is the only dog that “blushes”. They can also be trained to smile, and they love doing it.
14. Ibizan Hound
Another dog out of Egypt, the Ibizan hound is prized for its sprinting and jumping abilities. “Beezers” were created for hunting small game, including rabbits. They needed speed, agility, and determination.
Today, they put those traits to good use with active families, competitions, and even hunting – still. Pooches in this breed can easily jump 5 feet, so a tall, sturdy fence is a must.
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Fastest Dog Breeds Over 60 Pounds
At 45 miles per hour, this breed is a favorite for dog tracks. With agility and obedient manners, they compete in many dog shows and sports. Sweet natured and gentle, they do great as a family pet.
Make sure you have at least a six-foot fence. These fastest dog breeds aren’t just good runners, they are good jumpers, too. Greyhounds (pictured above) still retain a high prey drive, so you need to make sure they are always secured. Once they get going, you won’t be able to catch them.
16. German Shepherd
Intelligent and obedient, you will often see these dogs working for the police, search and rescue, or as a service dog. Their speed is one factor in why they are so popular.
Not only are they fast enough to run down a criminal, but they are also alert. For this reason, German Shepherd dogs are also popular guard dogs. While they are friendly, playful, and loving, they like having some “me” time as well.
A sighthound that hunts wolves, rabbits, birds, and more, must be fast. The Borzoi has top speeds around 35 – 40 miles per hour. While they are fast, they don’t have a ton of endurance.
These fur-babies prefer a quick game of fetch to an all-day hike in the woods. Also called the “Russian Wolfhound”, this regal breed was owned and bred by the aristocracy. Unfortunately, many were slaughtered during the Russian Revolution.
18. Doberman Pinscher
Made to be a guard dog and a companion dog, the Doberman can quickly get where it needs to be. At the first sign of trouble, these four-legged companions spring into action. While they may have a nasty reputation, this breed is gentle and loving unless trained to be otherwise.
These fastest dog breeds are quite sensitive and need human companionship to be happy and healthy. If left alone too often, these sleek animals can become aggressive and destructive.
A German breed, the “Gray Ghost” can speed by in a blur. Not only is this canine a sighthound, but it was bred with good scenting ability, agility, and intelligence. This makes it a great all-around hound for hunting, shows, and competitions.
A Weimaraner was even the “First Dog” when it lived with President Eisenhower in the White House. This breed needs to be well trained from puppyhood. They love to catch other animals and will be off before you can stop it.
20. Golden Retriever
Friendly and tolerant, these canines make great pets for families with small children. They run about 15 – 20 miles per hour, so while they can’t join the races, they are willing and able to play rousing games of Frisbee and catch.
These canines are intelligent and obedient. They make great hunting partners, beach bums, and babysitters. These characteristics have landed them on the list of top three most popular dogs for years.
21. Great Dane
These Mastiff type dogs are the biggest in the world. Most measure in at the size of a pony. Their long legs are more than just a pretty trait. While they may look clumsy and gangly, they can actually reach speeds up to 30 miles per hour.
Not from Denmark, they are actually known as the German Mastiff. The origin of the name is lost in time. Due to their size, these fastest dog breeds usually live less than 10 years.
22. Labrador Retriever
Good at hauling nets, fetching ropes, and retrieving fish for fisherman, this jack-of-all-trades also makes a great hunting dog and family companion. The most popular dog in America for several years, you would be hard-pressed to find any faults in these fur-babies.
While they do make this list of fastest dog breeds, their speed of 15–20 miles per hour isn’t breaking any records. Good thing they aren’t a favorite for race tracks!
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23. German Shorthaired Pointer
With a classic hound dog look, these four-legged friends are popular for hunting and companionship. The German Shorthaired Pointer loves to run and play. They are great for people who hike or jog. As a water dog, these pups also LOVE to swim.
Given their energy levels, they need at least an hour of exercise a day. Don’t forget – a tired dog is a happy dog. When bored or wound up, these dogs can be loud and destructive.
These handsome canines are a deterrent to thieves, and a common service dog. While they have a bad reputation, the Rottweiler’s popularity as police dogs, guide dogs, and family pets should show you that the determining factor of a dog’s personality is how it is raised and trained.
Yes, some people will breed for aggressive qualities. So, like with any breed, make sure your new furry family member comes from a reputable breeder.
25. Rhodesian Ridgeback
Also known as the “African Lion Hound”, dogs from this breed are tough. Their sleek appearance and confidence make them both bold and beautiful. At speeds up to 25 miles per hour, they cut a handsome sight of rippling muscles and raw power.
In their native role, they protected people and livestock from lions and other predators. They can be destructive, so make sure you have plenty diversions for this active dog.