The Welsh Terrier was originally called the Black-and-Tan Wire
Haired Terrier, Old English Terrier and at one point called the
old Reddish-Black Wirehaired Terrier. Developed in Wales, they were
bred for their hunting abilities particularly with badger, fox and
otter. The dogs would go down into the dens to drive out the prey
for the hunter and would commonly be taken out with packs of hounds.
The breed was first shown in England in 1884. Some of the Welsh
Terrier's talents include: hunting, tracking, watchdog, agility,
and performing tricks.
The Welsh Terrier looks like a small version of the Airedale Terrier.
The head is rectangular in appearance. The muzzle is half the length
of the head with a slight stop. Teeth meet in a scissors or level
bite. The small, almond-shaped eyes are set fairly wide apart and
are dark brown in colour. The v-shaped ears fold slightly to the
side of the head and forward. The front legs are straight and the
round, small feet are cat-like.
The back is level forming a straight line. Dewclaws may be removed.
The tail can only be docked on working dogs. The coat is double
with a soft undercoat and a wiry, hard, dense outer coat with bushy
eyebrows, moustache and beard. Colours include black and tan and
grizzle with a black jacket marking over the back. Puppies are born
all black and as their coats lighten the jacket marking remains
The Welsh Terrier is a vigilant, active, cheerful dog, who is affectionate
and intelligent. As a breed the dogs are loving, devoted, playful
and happy, they are usually patient with children and can withstand
rough play. Curious, courageous, hardy, energetic and peppy, they
are best suited to an active family.
Welsh Terriers need plenty of exercise along with leadership, clearly
knowing the rules of the home and what is expected of them. This
structure is what makes a dog happy and well balanced. When a dog
is lacking in this they can become timid, and unsure. They can also
possibly become dog-aggressive and stubborn as they make up their
own rules. They will not listen if they sense that they are stronger
minded than their owner, however they will also not respond well
to harsh discipline. Owners need to be calm, yet possess an air
of natural authority. Socialise this breed well from a puppy with
people, other dogs and if possible other animals.
The Welsh Terrier has a slightly lower energy level than some of
the other hunting terrier breeds. They like to swim and dig. Some
can be difficult to house train. The Welsh Terrier is bright enough
to understand quickly what you want of them but, if you are not
a calm, assertive leader, they can be sly enough to try to divert
you from your intentions. Give these dogs constant variety in their
training and remain consistent towards them. Remember to always
be your dogs pack leader.
Height: Maximum allowed: 39cm.
Some lines are prone to eye problems and skin irritations.
Welsh Terriers can live in smaller dwellings or a flat as long
as they are sufficiently exercised. They are very active indoors
and can live without the use of a garden.
The Welsh Terrier is untiring. They need to be taken for at least
two goods walks. They are always ready to play with a ball and to
run freely in the open countryside. The Welsh Terrier likes to chase
after anything that moves. Take caution when letting them off their
lead especially around livestock.
Around 10-12 years
The Welsh Terrier needs to have its coat stripped two, three, or
more times a year depending upon the condition of the coat. It also
requires grooming with a brush and comb a number of times each week.
Dogs that are to be shown will require even greater levels of attention
to their grooming. The longer hair at the feet, on the belly, and
around the face, give the Welsh Terrier its typical appearance and
should be left long. This breed looses little to no hair.