Fastest Dogs in the World

Written by:
January 23, 2018

Fastest dogs in the world

Imagine walking your loveable doggo down your favorite stretch of road when a car alarm suddenly catches your attention. In the short second it takes to glance at the commotion, your furry best friend jolts, yanking the leash from your hand. By the time you turn around and begin to run,  the dog is already halfway down the block, and you realize you may need a bike or even a car to catch up, depending on the breed.

This scenario can be nightmare fuel for some, but it’s a common occurrence experienced by almost all pet owners at some point. This makes it all the more important to understand a dog's breed before taking on the responsibility of caring for and training a canine friend. Often, dogs that can run at high speeds were originally bred for hunting and herding purposes, including the Border Collie and Anatolian Shepherd, which both excel at agility and speed, and require vigorous exercise to expend their extra energy.

Here at Stacker, we’ve ranked 23 dog breeds by top speed using data from the American Kennel ClubVet Street and, World’s Fastest Dogs to help better understand your energetic companion.

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Ellen Levy Finch // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Boston Terrier

Top Speed: 25 miles per hour

This small, friendly breed with a playful and energetic personality is known as the “American gentleman.”. Boston Terriers are thought to be directly related to the English Bulldog Terrier breeds and are well built for canine sportsespecially those involving speed.

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Ranveig // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Rat Terrier

Top Speed: 27 miles per hour

Originally bred as hunting companions and for pest control, Rat Terriers are considered a rare breed. They are sociable, intelligent, easy to train, and especially compatible with young children; making it a great choice for first-time pet owners with families.

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Sue and Marty // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Siberian Husky

Top Speed: 28 miles per hour

The Siberian Husky historically endured harsh conditions which conditioned the breed to become an iconic choice for sled dogs. Despite their tough build, Siberian Huskies are considered exceptionally friendly with children due to their pack nature and high energy. However, the breed needs to be specially cared for and exercised sufficiently, as they are considered to be escape artists and have been known to jump fences as high as eight feet.

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Paul Kounine // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Giant Schnauzer

Top Speed: 28 miles per hour

Giant Schnauzers are gentle creatures with a timid nature, though they are known to become defensive when presented with new people or situations. Their history as farm and herding dogs trained them to be fast and playful, supplying them with an energetic and loyal nature. Giant Schnauzers are known to be easily trained and loyal to their owner.

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Franck Balzar // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Anatolian Shepherd

Top Speed: 28 miles per hour

The Anatolian Shepherd is an old breed, dating as far back as 6,000 years ago, where they endured intense temperatures and displayed feats of speed while defending livestock from bears and mountain lions. Consequently, its forceful and defensive nature can make it a handful for owners to trainthis breed must be socialized to properly train them as companion dogs.

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Tina creates // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Border Collie

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Considered remarkably intelligent, Border Collies are bred for herding livestock and are known to be energetic and athletic, often displaying impressively quick maneuvers in dog sports. The breed is only recommended for owners who can keep up with its active lifestyle, which is known to be demanding.

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free media repository // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Boxer

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Boxers are a kind and loving breed that display the utmost loyalty to their owner, and are patient and protective of children, making it an ideal family dog. The breed’s name is thought to derive from their inclination to stand on their rear legs and thrust their front paws forwardresembling a boxer’s movements. 

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wim harwig // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Belgian Malinois

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Belgian Malinois are considered to be one of the most energetic dog breeds, which also means they demand plenty of attention and exercise. The breed is used for working tasks in military and police operations that require them to detect scents of possible threats; most notably used in  White House defense.

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Rytis Mikelskas // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Great Dane

Top Speed: 30 miles per hour

Ancestry of the Great Dane is widely thought to have originated from a dog breed present in ancient Greece; as depicted in Greek art, Great-Dane lookalikes appear hunting wild boar. Despite its intimidating stature, this gentle giant is friendly and patient, rarely displaying aggression or hostility. The breed is recommended for families as long as they raise it from a young age and socialize it properly.

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Bill, king of the squizzies // Wikimedia commons

#14. Poodle

Top Speed: 33 miles per hour

Poodles are known for their beauty and brains. Most commonly used as show dogs, Poodles are ranked the third most intelligent dog breed by Vetstreet, and exhibit great agility and obedience. The breed is normally shy around new people but quickly expresses affection playfulness when socialized well enough.

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WoodmonkeyPhoto // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Pharoah Hound

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

Pharaoh Hounds are confident and self-reliant, but require special training that doesn’t involve disciplinary action. Though the breed’s DNA doesn’t have direct relation to Egypt, some believe it resembles breeds depicted in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, which may support the myth of Phoenicians bringing the breed to Malta more than 2,000 years ago.

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Bruce // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Weimaraner

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

The Weimaraner is considered to be an all-purpose dog, with traits that fulfill a number of specific needs for hunting small game and sports, including speed and a keen nose. The breed is considered energetic and sociable, but when left alone, they tend to be anxious and unruly.

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John Adams // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Doberman Pinscher

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

Doberman Pinschers are a strong-willed and well-tempered breed, known for its graceful tendency to walk and stand on its toes rather than its paws. The breed is often perceived as intimidating due to its appearance, which unfortunately is frequently coupled with the practice of clipping its tail and ears. Thankfully, some countries are beginning to outlaw the practice.

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Hanna Woana // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Scottish Deerhound

Top Speed: 35 miles per hour

This ancient breed is believed to pre-date recorded history and varies little from its ancestors. Scottish Deerhounds get their name from their reputation of being exceptional deer hunters, which they chase down at speeds of up to 35 miles per hour. While they may not be the fastest for racing purposes, some believe them to be faster than counterparts while in their natural habitat.

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Flickr user Deanna // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Whippet

Top Speed: 36 miles per hour

Whippets are often used as athletes in various dog sports, including racing and hare coursing, as the breed exhibits impressive speed and agility, especially when properly trained. The breed is described as quiet and timid, and may be happy resting for most of the day. However, Whippets can be oversensitive, and may react when startled or touched.

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Taru T Torpstram // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Borzoi

Top Speed: 36 miles per hour

With a Russian name that translates to ‘fast,’ the Borzoi lives up to its name with the ability to run at a full speed of 36 miles per hour. Due to its slim build, silky smooth coat of fur, and its quiet and independent nature, the breed often appears in dog shows and athletics. Borzois are selective learners, requiring the owner’s patience and persistence to train.

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Bree // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Dalmatian

Top Speed: 37 miles per hour

The Dalmatian is iconically known for its appearance in Disney’s  “One Hundred and One Dalmatians,” and for its reputation as a firehouse dog in the U.S. Dalmatians have a natural liking for horses, which made them ideal for running alongside firefighter carriages in the early years of firefighting, as they were one of the few breeds who could keep up with horses. The breed continues to be a mascot for firefightersand the Budweiser Clydesdalesto this day.

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SaNtINa/kIKs // Wikimedia Commons

#6. German Shepherd Dog

Top Speed: 39 miles per hour

German Shepherds are historically used as guard and service dogs due to their natural eagerness to work. German Shepherds used for police service are so inclined to perform that they have been known to become upset when they fail to sniff out dangerous objects, requiring their handlers to routinely set up hazardous items for the dog to find.

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Bryon Realey // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Vizsla

Top Speed: 40 miles per hour

Vizslas are bred to be hunters and retrievershistorically, the breed brought fowl to its owner after the bird was shot. The breed requires tons of attention and affection, and will sometimes whine when it feels ignored. Like most dogs used for hunting, Vizslas require a level of exercise, so prepare to be active.

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Lilly M // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Afghan Hound

Top Speed: 40 miles per hour

The Afghan Hound is considered a staple in dog shows, as the breed has a long and luscious coat of fur that owners groom to highlight its silky appearance. While the breed is a popular competitor in show, it also possesses remarkable speed, which makes it a worthy contestant in agility sports.

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free media repository // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Ibizan Hound

Top Speed: 40 miles per hour

The Ibizan Hound aims to entertain its owner with hyperactive antics and endless energy, as they will often escape crates and jump high fences. The breed has a natural inclination to run when unbounded, so it is recommended owners keep a watchful eye when their dog is off its leash. Ibizan Hounds are also protective and bark only when necessarycharacteristics of a great guard dog.

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r. // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Saluki

Top Speed: 43 miles per hour

Salukis are sight hunters, using their sharp vision to spot prey from great distances, and relying on their extraordinary speed to hunt down small prey. While not acknowledged as the quickest dog over short distances, it is believed that the Saluki is capable of faster speeds over long distances.

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christina // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Greyhound

Top Speed: 45 miles per hour

The Greyhound’s tall, slender build was specially bred for dog racing, making it the fastest dog with a top speed of 45 miles per hour. Unlike like other dogs, the breed is meant for speed rather than endurance, and doesn’t require much exercise. Greyhounds are often content with lounging around the house, and are recognized for their independent and gentle nature. However, without a proper outlet of exercise,they can become hyperactive and even destructive.

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