How Fast can a Borzoi Run?

How Fast can a Borzoi Run

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Borzoi Top Verified Speed:  36 Miles Per Hour / 58 Kilometers Per Hour / 53 Feet Per Second / 16 Meters Per Second

That is very fast!  Borzoi are considered among the fastest dogs on Earth, considered by most to be in the top 10 fastest dog breeds. Borzoi are often compared to Greyhounds.  Borzoi are even sometimes called Fluffy Greyhounds or Long Haired Greyhounds.

How Fast Are Greyhounds?

The Greyhound is considered to be the fastest dog breed in the world, with a top verified speed of almost 42 Miles Per Hour / 67 Kilometers Per Hour.  There is anecdotal evidence of a Greyhound in Australia hitting 50 Miles Per Hour!

A Peculiar Borzoi vs Greyhound Dog Racing Story

This leads us to an extraordinary, but unverified, story.  Part of the difficulty with verifying the story is that it took place behind the Iron Curtain during the Cold War, in Dresden, East Germany, in 1969.

Borzoi vs Greyhound racetrack
Dresden Bicycle Track

During a greyhound race at a former bicycle track, a number of races were run and a number of different breeds took part.  At one point, a Borzoi competed against some greyhounds and won!  Of course, the greyhounds could have been unusually slow representatives of their breed.  But, maybe that Borzoi was running a bit faster than 36 MPH that day.  The name of the Borzoi is lost to history, but there is a surviving photograph of the beautiful borzoi and the dog’s owner, kneeling next to the dog, with the borzoi muzzle. in his left hand

Dresden, GDR, man with  Borzoi, winner of a Greyhound race on former cycle track Johannstadt
02.11.1969, Dresden, Bezirk Dresden, GDR – Man kneels in front of his Borzoi, winner of a Greyhound race on the former cycle track Johannstadt.

It is not a coincidence that this story happened in Dresden, East Germany.  East Germany, also known as the German Democratic Republic (GDR), was occupied by Soviet (Russian) troops.  Borzoi were first bred in Russian and were originally known as Russian Wolfhounds.  By 1969 the Soviets had occupied East Germany for 24 years, plenty of time for Russian soldiers and diplomats (and their families) to bring Borzoi dogs with them to Dresden and other areas of the GDR.  Also, Borzoi were already somewhat popular in Germany, with a Borzoi club opening in Berlin in the 1880s.  

We humans always want to know the fastest or largest this or that, but it is essentially impossible for us to know the top speed that any Borzoi has ever hit.  We can say with certainty that Borzoi are among the fastest dogs on the planet, in general slower than greyhounds, but certainly a lot faster than us!

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