Just about any dog can run fast when chasing after a ball or heading toward a bowl of food. But there are certain breeds of dogs that are really fast; as in they can get up to speeds that humans can only achieve behind the wheel of a vehicle. Take a look at the top five fastest dog breeds in the world.
5. Jack Russell Terrier - 38 mph
Number five on the list of speediest dog breeds is the cute and compact Jack Russell Terrier, which clocks in at up to 38 miles per hour. This breed may be small, but it is very mighty and needs a lot of exercise to expend its energy. It was a welcome addition to fox hunting excursions in England centuries ago. Many other tiny terriers are often confused with this breed, including the Parson Russell terrier and the Russell Terrier. All of these dogs get their name from Reverend John Russell, an English clergyman who bred dogs in the early 1800s. Due to their winning personalities and adorable antics, Jack Russells have stolen scenes in many television and film productions.
4. Afghan Hound - 40 mph
Next on the list of fast canines is the Afghan Hound, known to reach speeds of 40 miles per hour. It is named for its origins in Afghanistan dating back to the 1800s, when the royal family used these speedy sighthounds as companions for hunters on horseback in pursuit of hares, gazelles, and snow leopards. After the India-Afghanistan wars, British military officers brought these dogs back home with them, introducing these fast and agile dogs to the West. Today, Afghans often take top prize in the show ring, as well as for other events in agility and obedience.
3. Vizla - 40 mph
Another doggo clocking in at 40 miles per hour is the vizsla. The vizsla dates back to the 8th century when they were prized by the Magyar tribes as hunters. Striking in appearance, the vizsla is of medium size with a golden rust-colored coat. A member of the sporting group, the breed is known for its gentle affection, making it suitable for family companionship. However, the vizsla still loves nothing more than the chance to get out in the open and run.
2. Saluki - 42 mph
Don’t underestimate a Saluki’s graceful appearance; this dog was built to race, reaching speeds of up to 42 miles per hour. This majestic breed has been hailed for many centuries as an able hunter. Look closely at paintings from the Renaissance era, and you’ll likely spot a Saluki in the foreground, eagerly waiting to go out on a hunt with its master. While these sleek canines have enjoyed a long history, they were not yet known to the West until after World War I. Today, Salukis are known for taking top prize in many racing and conformation events.
1. Greyhound - 45 mph
The fastest dog on four paws is the greyhound, clocking in at 45 miles per hour. One of the world’s oldest breeds going back to Cleopatra’s reign in Egypt, greyhounds made their way west with Spanish explorers in the 1500s. During the 1800s, they hunted wild game with the English and Irish. A greyhound’s body is made to run, thanks to its balanced symmetry that gives it speed. The breed makes for excellent companions, but these powerful dogs are at their very best when they are competing in racing and agility events.