Origin: Great Britain
AKC Group: Terrier
14.5 - 15.5 pounds (Male)
18 - 20 pounds (Male)
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Welsh Terriers are easygoing and they like lots of exercise. They're fast chasers - keep them on a leash or in a fenced-in yard whenever they're outside. These charming little dogs usually get along well with other pets and considerate children.
Welsh Terriers are part of the Terrier group. In general, terriers have a very distinctive personality that's unlike any other breed. They're feisty and energetic. Originally bred to hunt and kill vermin, terriers love the chase - don't let your terrier off its leash unless it's in an enclosed area.
Terriers make excellent pets. These tough little canines have an attitude, however, so they usually adapt better to quiet households. Most terriers are usually jealous and snippy around other pets, especially dogs.
While some terriers are good with children, most will snap if provoked. If you want your terrier to be friendly with strangers, you need to accustom it to people at an early age. Terriers are also barkers and diggers.
In terms of health, terriers are very hardy dogs with few health problems. Most live a long time, usually around 15 years. Terriers need to be brushed twice a week and professionally groomed about every three months. While pet terriers are usually clipped, show dogs are stripped, which means the dead hairs are plucked out one by one so the coat color doesn't fade.
Short and wiry with bushy eyebrows and a beard. Tail is docked; ears fold forward.
Puppies are born black but the black fades from the head, chest, and legs by four months of age. Adults are tan or reddish brown with a black neck and back. Eyes are dark; nose is black.
Many of today's terriers can be traced back to the Old English Terrier of northern England. The Welsh Terrier may in fact be the closest and the most direct descendant of this ancient strain. These terriers were prized for their ability to hunt otters, foxes, and badgers one-on-one by cornering them in their dens, as well as for their ability to hunt in packs for other game.
All Old English Terriers were shown under the same classification until 1888. It was then that a dog named Dick Turpin shook things up. He was winning so often that the English fanciers wanted him categorized as "English Terrier", but the Welsh wanted him to go on the record books as a true "Welsh Terrier". England's Kennel Club (KC) sided with the Welsh, and Dick Turpin became a foundation sire for the breed we know today-dogs who are prized as sporty and devoted companions.
The Welsh Terrier's compact, sturdy exterior hides a genuinely affable dog who relishes time spent with his nearest and dearest. Curious and fairly calm, his standard describes him as showing self-control, and this is evident in his demeanor. However, the Welsh Terrier is still all terrier and does have a terrier's natural drive and protectiveness. For this reason, he makes a great watchdog - and a dog for whom socialization from puppyhood is necessary so that he can feel confident, not threatened, by different kinds of people, places and things.
The Welsh Terrier enjoys country living, where he can sniff and dig to his heart's content, but he can be equally at home in the city, provided he's given enough exercise. This handsome fellow makes a fine travel companion because he's compact, sturdy and easy to get around with. A fenced-in yard is necessary, as the Welsh Terrier will give chase to small animals that catch his eye. For this same reason, he should not be left off leash unless in a secured area.
The Welsh Terrier can excel at earthdog, agility, tracking, flyball and rally.
The Welsh Terrier is an active and curious breed that needs daily exercise. He enjoys going for several walks a day, and allowing him to participate in activities that stimulate his mind and terrier abilities will help get rid of any excess energy.
The Welsh Terrier likes to eat but can be finicky. Feeding several smaller meals a day may be more to his liking, but make sure that the food is high quality and age appropriate. Don't succumb to feeding him table scraps, and monitor his weight, as the riches you bestow upon him may quickly expand his waistline.
When it comes to training a Welsh Terrier, start when he is young and be patient. He is an intelligent and talented dog but is independent minded and somewhat easily distracted. Keep training sessions positive and short for best results. The Welsh Terrier must be socialized from puppyhood to learn to handle all kinds of outside influences.
The Welsh Terrier is usually affable around children, although does best with older children to whom he is well socialized. The breed retains its hunting instincts and must be supervised around small animals.
The average life span of the Welsh Terrier is 13 to 15 years. Health problems may include epilepsy; glaucoma; hypothyroidism; and skin problems.
The first Welsh Terriers imported into the United States were named "T'Other" and "Which."
To look his best, the Welsh Terrier should be professionally groomed by someone who understands how he should appear. This will include hand-stripping his coat about four times a year to keep it from getting shaggy. Clipping can damage the texture of the fur, which should be coarse and wiry. On the plus side, he is practically nonshedding, and with regular stripping only needs to be combed every so often to look great.
Copyright by T.F.H. Publications, Inc. This document has been published with the intent to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter within. While every reasonable precaution has been taken in preparation of this document, the author and publisher expressly disclaim responsibility for any errors, omissions, or adverse effects arising from the use or application of the information contained herein. The techniques and suggestions are used at the reader's discretion.