Pure Longhaired Whippets
Controversies in Dogdom
It is a sad thing to discover, but there are many hate-mongers and people who spread lies about other people in this world. And specifically, we are faced with such people in the land of dogdom. For some of these people, it seems to be their mission in life. This is a sad thing. Unfortunately, such people have targeted me, and so I have been forced to write this page. Otherwise, as the saying goes, "A lie repeated often enough will be believed." Therefore, I am publicly refuting these people here, stating the truth, and let God be my judge, and their judge, too.
Certain people who are spreading falsehoods -
Certain closed registry-type people who believe that the Longhaired Whippet should not exist, either at all, or under this name. This subject has been dealt with on several other pages, so we will not rehash that particular topic here. Some of these people will say just about anything evil that their minds can concoct, either about the LHW, or about me, or about those who work with us. They often tell the same lies as are listed below. It's a shame, really, and I do believe that they should find something more constructive to do with their time.
Some other people have been spreading lies about me, personally, and about other Longhaired Whippet folks, for quite a few years now, and it's really sad. They have spread many untruths about me, but here are the two that they are most likely to tell people.
Lie #1: The first lie they say is that we sell dogs to research labs. This is a blatant, 100% LIE!!! What's worse, they KNOW they are lying!!! There is NO TRUTH to that, at all!!
Below is the Truth!
With LHW, for quite a number of years there was only one breeder in the USA who bred more than a couple of litters, and that was the founder of the breed. Several people tried a litter or two, and for one reason or another, they discontinued their efforts. We obtained our initial breeding stock in 1993, and after I had owned LHW for a couple of years and bred a few litters, I saw that the LHW was possibly on the road to extinction, particularly if anything should happen to the founder's kennel. This precarious situation became very apparent to me in 1997, when I made my second trip up to Windsprite Kennel, and obtained additional breeding stock. It was then that I determined to not let that happen, and started to concentrate on building my own independent, self-sustaining colony, to help ensure the survival of the breed.
When you are maintaining a self-sustaining breeding program for a very rare breed, because there are not any more of your breed hardly anywhere, then you must maintain a colony, so that there are enough somewhat distantly unrelated dogs to enable the survival of the breed type. You must keep enough dogs to make sure that you have some that are not related, for future breeding purposes.
Building and maintaining a colony of a rare breed is a vast undertaking, in time, space, effort, and money. To be truly self-sustaining means that you must have quite a few dogs to enable this genetic diversity. It is a major undertaking. Longhaired Whippets (LHW) are not like many breeds, where there is someone else within a few hours' drive to go to for stud purposes, or whatever.
A breeding colony must have breeding quality dogs, and since it is very difficult to tell which puppies will grow up to be exactly what you need for your breeding program, you must keep quite a few puppies to watch them mature, and then make your selection as they become adults. Because the puppies do not always grow up to your expectations, you inevitably end up with adult dogs that are not breeding quality. It is very difficult, if not impossible, to sell adult, pet quality dogs that have lived in a kennel, colony situation. Very rarely does anyone come knocking at your door interested in being a good home for this category of dogs. Most people want puppies, and if they are willing to take an adult, they want it to be a dog that is already the perfect house pet.
What to do with them, these "in-between" type dogs? Dogs that are not breeder quality, but would make a wonderful pet, if someone was willing to take the time to train and socialize them? If one keeps all of them forever, in the kennel situation, one's breeding efforts must soon end, unless one has a limitless amount of space, and also a limitless supply of money to buy food, pay the vet, etc. If the colony's breeding efforts end, then what will happen to the rare breed type? Hopefully it would continue to exist, but perhaps not, or at least, not as easily.
When I asked an old, experienced breeder, years ago, what to do with these "in-between" dogs, I was advised by him, that these "in-between" dogs would have to be put down (killed). I also know, via vets, that other breeders would bring in puppies from litters that did not sell, to be put down. Other breeders I know put these kinds of dogs down themselves. I did not want to put down a dog that could become a good pet for someone.
So, I tried to find a safe way to rehome the dogs. I did not want to advertise free dogs in the newspapers, as people with questionable motives might obtain one. I, myself, have done "rehoming" for other people, and taken in dogs from other folks, both breeder and nonbreeders, as well. I have paid for air flights from as far away as the west coast of Canada, to Florida. I have driven to Michigan to get dogs that needed rehoming. Plus I have also taken dogs in from as nearby as Pennsylvania. Some I have placed myself, some I have worked with other kind and gracious folks to find homes for. In particular, I began to work with a vet friend of mine locally, who offered to place some dogs for me, through a local, private college that has a vet tech program.
This program takes dogs from the community, and spays and neuters them, to show the students how that is done. They also show the students how to clean teeth, take x-rays, draw blood, give shots, clip nails, listen to hearts, etc, etc. They have NEVER done any kind of experiment, of any type, on any dog, EVER! The dogs are adopted out to good homes, as the homes become available. Some dogs are only at the private college for a few days, others are there longer. If any are not adoptable, I take them back. We have continued with this win-win relationship for many years, and as one owner of a 'college dog' said, "They aren't any the worse for the wear."
Also, I am not the only local breeder who works with this college, others, including other Whippet breeders, have also. So, it is apparent that other breeders also think this is a good program and are comfortable working with them.
So, if kind folks offer to place such dogs in good homes for you, you see them as a Godsend. And if you are responsible enough to take any dogs back that do not go to good homes (which I have done), then you are fulfilling your responsibility as a breeder. That is the situation here.
Surely, this is better than the alternative that I was advised. Also, surely it is better for the dogs to go to good pet homes than to be idle as kennel dogs for all their lives. And ultimately, it is better for the continuation of the rare breed, because new people are introduced to the breed, and the breeding program can go on, which otherwise it could not.
Following is an email that I received that sums up the good that this situation has done for the breed, beside providing folks with nice dogs for pets. This was a totally unsolicited email, and I do not know this lady, personally. Names have been removed, or changed, to "protect the innocent" from those who continue to lie about me. :-)
"Hello my name is < name removed > and I just visited your website. First, I would like to ask you if you were the breeder who supplied my school < name removed > with LH whippets? If so, I must say I truly enjoyed each and every one of your dogs. I graduated from the vet tech program in 1997, just when the "whips" were frequenting the kennel (I KNOW you know < "Jane" > who adopted < "Lucy" > (and later < "Tootsy" >)and < "Cindy" > who adopted < "Mic" >, then there was < "Joker" > and < "Sunny" >, [who I named because of her beautiful brindle color]). A strict "AKC person" I initially doubted this technically "new to us" breed and frowned on the "development of a genetic kink" (as some of the traditional whippet people would tell me), I was quickly turned around from that point of view. WHAT WONDERFUL DOGS!!!! Six years out of school and countless encounters with traditional whippets, I can surely tell the difference. LH whippets, in my opinion, take all of the good traits of the shorthairs, and improve upon them. I just wanted to email you and tell you of my pleasure with the breed. And if you are not the "College LH whippet lady" please know that whoever that person (he/she) was, opened my eyes to a wonderful breed. Maybe someday there will be a LH whippet in my future!
Thanks again, and nice website!
So, there is the truth. As I said above, I have NEVER, EVER, sold, or given, a dog, any dog, to a research laboratory of any type!!! Period. Some of our dogs have become "college dogs", and then "graduated" to good homes. And that is the Truth.
Now, here is another untruth that is being spread by some of the 'other' people. They are saying that we are mixing our pure Longhaired Whippets with our wire project dogs, and passing off the resulting offspring as pure Longhaired Whippets. This is another blatant, 100% lie.
Anyone who has come here and seen our dogs, and that has been many, many folks through the years, will be happy to tell anyone who has a question about this topic, that as we walk around our kennel farm facilities, I point out and describe, specifically, the dogs that are pure Longhaired Whippets; the smooth/longhair recessives, and the AKC Whippets; and the crossbred dogs in the wire project. We have had van loads of people here on tours, as well as many, many individuals, so there is no shortage of folks who would be able to easily refute these lies spread by certain people in this particular group.
[For those interested in knowing more about our ongoing wire project dogs, see the page:
Furthermore, these certain people KNOW these are lies, and yet they tell unsuspecting and inquiring new people this, and those new folks believe it, because they do not know any better. The dishonesty and deceitfulness of some of the people involved in these other groups has been reported to me by many of my friends, so I know that it is happening, repeatedly, and on a regular basis. This is a shame.
Another thing these same people are telling unsuspecting folks is that members from the 'other' Longhaired Whippet group, the LWA, (which we are NOT involved with in any way), are not allowed on the LHW List on Yahoo (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/longhairedwhippet) that I started and moderate. This is another blatant falsehood. While it is true that a few people had to be removed from the list, this unfortunate action had nothing to do with whether these people belonged to a certain group, or not. In fact, there are numerous members from other groups on the list, and they are most welcome to be there. I started the LHW List so that owners and fanciers of LHW, no matter what club they belong or don't belong to, could network, as before that, most LHW owners didn't even know each other, at all! Also, the LHW List is a place for nonLHW owners to learn about the breed. All are welcome, as long as they adhere to certain standards of conduct. If not, then they are "welcome" to leave. :-)
Something that is also really amazing to me, is that on a number of occasions, some of the very same untruthful people, discussed above, have asked me to provide them with pedigree information for Longhaired Whippets that they got from either the original LHW kennel, or from someone else. Oh well, the only thing that you can do is to pray for these kinds of people who feel that they can use, and then abuse, others.
As with the LWA, we are NOT in any way, at all, involved with the Silken Windhound group. However, some of their members are also on the LHW List, and many of them are wonderful folks.
As I contemplate why these people do things like lie about others, I can only presume it is because they are insecure in what they, themselves, are doing, and so lie about what others are doing, in a pathetic effort to make themselves look better. I hope and pray that these poor people soon get a better perspective on life, for their own peace of mind, and so that they will not be held accountable for leading others astray.
Also, I know that I do not need to worry such about people. They are everywhere in this life, and there are Bible verses that help me to focus on the right thing:
1 Peter 5:7 - "Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you."
Psalm 9:9 - "The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble."
Psalm 27:1 - "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?"
Isaiah 26:3 - "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."
It's only when I let my eyes wander from the Lord that I get all worked up about wicked people who do such nasty things.
Like I stated at the top of this page, I am saddened to have to write this page, but the Truth must be told, and so I have.
The flip side is, there are so many very wonderful folks who have been an absolute joy to work with through the years, and who have been so very, very supportive. They have gotten dogs from us, and have made many referrals, and have just been great to have as clients and friends. It to these terrific people that I want to say, "Thank you so very much!! You make it all worthwhile." :-)
more information contact:
Claybrook Farm -- Michelle Henninger -- Shippensburg, PA 17257
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