Types of Terrier Dogs

Boston Terrier | Bull Terrier | Jack Russell | Yorkshire Terrier 

Border Terrier | Cairn Terrier | Wheaten Terrier | Airedale Terrier

Working Terriers | Terrier Training

Terrier Pictures


Whatever your taste in dogs is, you are sure to find terrier dogs amongst one of the most interesting breeds. Terriers are very energetic dogs, need very little grooming and make wonderful companions.

They were originally bred for hunting and killing vermin but terrier dogs posses a wide range of characteristics that you might find attractive. They are not as cuddlesome as toy dogs (while there are some terrier dogs in the toy and companion dog catagories) and they may not seem as intelligent as some other breeds but against this they posses various traits that only they can offer.

How to build a Medium dog house for small and medium size dogs like Terriers.

Temperament of Terrier Dogs

Many terriers share some common character traits, nevertheless the temperament of the terrier can vary in each individual.

Jack Russells, for instance, are very busy, energetic dogs - as are Scotties, Westies and other terrier breeds. All the same, many of their characteristics are different. Jack Russells are taller, short-haired, with different coloring than a Scottish Terrier or a West Highland. However they all possess that intelligence, tenacity and courageous behavior common numerous terriers.

Nature plays a prominent role in providing terriers with a certain form and attitude. But nurture and breeding is still important. The experiences an individual has early in life count for a great deal.

The temperament of the terrier appears most distinctly during training. Like all dogs, terriers can be trained. Fox Terriers and Yorkies have had quite important parts in films, been used as game hunters and more. Terrier training molds and channels behavior.

Terrier dogs are all strong willed and this can't be suppressed, so be realistic and work with the dog's natural characteristics and instincts, not against them. These dogs need to release energy or you could have a bored, destructive pet. Training is a good method of channeling this energy into more acceptable and productive behavior.

Inside the various breeds of terrier there are differences of temperament, too. Yorkies are generally more friendly than, Pit Bull Terriers. But within a breed there are still individual characters of dogs, and their temperament can vary widely. Even with the best training techniques individual dogs will react differently

Some will take to training more quickly than others. Some will be naturally less trusting of strangers, others more instinctively friendly. Many may be happy to be alone for long periods, while some will crave attention.

The temperament of the terrier is affected by both nurture and nature alike but even the most enthusiastic training can't eradicate individual traits.

Common Diseases Among Terrier Dogs

Because terrier dog breeds are so various, there is really no one disease that is common to them all. There are however, some conditions to be aware of when caring for Terrier dogs.

Von Willebrand's Disease in Terrier Dogs

von Willebrand's disease is a genetic condition that can contribute to excessive bleeding. This can be caused by the lack of a particular protein and can happen at any time, bringing about bleeding at the gums and nose, or causing blood in the urine and elsewhere.

Pure breeds seem to be at a greater risk from von Willebrand's disease. It does seem to appear more in Scottish Terrier dogs and Miniature Schnauzers, but has been noticed in Jack Russells.

Parents should be tested for this disease to try to eradicate it in their pups.

Legg-Perthes Disease

This also is a genetic disease normally noticeable in the first 6-8 months of the dog's life. Legg-Perthes causes the end of the thighbone to deteriorate. This results in a great deal of pain and causes the dog to limp. This disease is less common, but does appear more in Yorkshire Terriers. Surgery can be used to rectify this condition but the dog can be left with a pronounced limp.

Patellar Luxation

Yorkshire Terriers tend to suffer from Patellar luxation more than other terriers. Their frailer ligaments and tendons sustaining the knee joint can cause the knee cap to come out of place.

The consequences are pain and lameness. Surgery once more is the answer, however, the problem can re-occur if the dog is not encouraged to live a less energetic life.

Heart Disease in Terrier Dogs

Terrier Dogs can have several heart ailments, but many of them are genetic.

Cardiomyopathy is a common heart ailment. This is an irregularity of the heart muscle and can cause fluid on the lungs. One of the symptoms is weakness during modest exercise. It can be present in Jack Russells and other terrier types. In some other heart diseases, valves may be defective causing irregularl blood flow. American Staffordshire Terriers seem to suffer from this ailment more than others.

Regular check ups at the vets can diagnose heart problems at an early stage so treatment can be administered appropriately.

Like most breeds, worms can cause heart problems so make sure all vaccinations are up to date.

Most terrier dogs lead a healthy energetic life but as with any breed of dog seek professional advice if you notice any changes you're not sure of.

Diet for Terrier Dogs

The Terrier Dog breeds are varied so no one diet would be ideal for each one, however, as with any dog diet there are some things to look out for that will ensure the health and happiness of your dog.

The Terrier Dog breeds are varied so no one diet would be ideal for each one, however, as with any dog diet there are some things to look out for that will ensure the health and happiness of your dog.

A well suited diet will contain a mixture of meats and grains but be aware that some dogs can be allergic to certain grains although terriers seem to be less affected than other breeds.

Terriers, as indeed all dogs, need a diet that contains a proper balance of protein, fat and vitamins . Animal meal such as chicken, lamb or beef, should be the main ingredient in any dry kibbles. You may decide to feed a raw or cooked diet from available ingredients, but care should be taken to make sure the meal is healthy for a terrier. Most recommendations are for a ratio of about 40% meat meal and no more than 30% vegetable, with the remainder starches and fats.

Any home made food should be eaten within a few days or frozen.

Terrier dogs that don't get the proper diet can suffer from flatulence and other digestive disorders which can often become a real health risk rather than a mild discomfort, especially in the smaller breeds of terrier dogs.

Terrier breeds come in all shapes and sizes so If you're unsure about the best food for your dog it's best to rely on your vet's recommendation. Their concern will be for the health and well-being of your dog.

Lets look at some of the terrier dog types that you might find interesting:

Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers

Less aggressive but decidedly not fainthearted. This best identifies Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers. They are definitely alert and very spirited, but when the call for steadiness arrives, they are certain to display an air of self-assurance and a steadfast temperament.

The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is quite an intelligent dog which makes it very responsive to obedience training.

Parson Russell Terriers

The Parson Russell, or Jack Russell Terrier is a breed that displays daring, ingenuity, affection and has an exuberant temperament. While many may find this a playful companion, it is still not advisable for everyone to take a Parson Russell home.

In point of fact, formal obedience training is a must for owners of this terrier dog, since this breed is more likely to show mischievousness and too much playfulness, so it makes this a very independent dog. For people with active lifestyles and those who can endure an explorative tendency, this terrier is the best for you.

Norwich Terriers

The Norwich Terrier, on the other hand, is a sort of dog that resulted from breeding small Terriers with other smaller breeds, possibly yorkshire terriers. Maintenance of Norwich Terrier is minimal and they are happy with a humble living accommodation. They possess an active disposition though and can be affectionate and courageous. In addition, they are also recognised as displaying stocky and happy personalities which make them ideal companions

Norfolk Terriers

Much like the Norwich Terriers, Norfolk Terriers are also well-spirited, fearless, captivating and forever ready for action. Although both may have some similar physical features, Norfolks can still be differentiated by the folds in their ears.

Kerry Blue Terriers

Fundamentally workman-like dogs, Kerry Blue Terrier dogs make first-class watchdogs and work well in farm settings. This dog got its name from its blue-shade coat color which is originally black during puppyhood.

Wire Fox Terriers

Wire Fox Terriers are of great interest as they exhibit power through their excellent endurance capabilities and speed. Alertness and quick movements are the dominant expressions of this dog. It is advisable though, that this dog is trained at an early age and is given plenty of exercise.

Smooth Fox Terriers

Meanwhile, Smooth Fox Terriers are the frolic and lively types of dog terriers that are ideal in both country and city living. Showing intelligence and ingenuity, these dogs are relatively easy to train. They are also likely to show great affection towards their owners.

These are just a few of the many terrier dogs that may be considered as your next pet. In general, these dogs have good temperaments and make ideal companions. Although some may exhibit obscure aggressiveness, this still does not negate the fact that most types have the capability to develop affection and keen expression of their attachment to their owners.

Be aware though that some dog types in this breed can be very playful and ought to be given adequate amount of attention and time during obedience training and exercises.