The Irish Terrier is a small-sized dog that belongs to the Terrier group and is one of the native breeds of Ireland. It has a medium length coat known for its bright red colour but the original Irish Terriers were black and tan, black, grey and brindle. The Irish Terrier is one of the oldest terrier breeds but the earliest of the breed were only shown in the ring in 1870. Compact in size and very active, the Irish Terrier is characterised by a typical terrier attitude: active, lively, unmindful, reckless, yappy, and will not back down from other dogs. Among the notable physical characteristics of the breed are: the typical long terrier head with a hardly visible stop, relatively small dark eyes, small v-shaped ears that drop forward closely to the cheek, muscular body, straight front legs and a very highly set tail that is carried gaily but not over the back.
The coat of the Irish Terrier is harsh and wiry with a broken look, neither soft nor silky. The ideal height for dogs is 48cms while the ideal height for bitches is 46cms.
All dog breeds have different levels of intellect. Some dog breeds; working dogs in particular, are very independent thinkers and have been evolved to be very intelligent. Typically, a highly intelligent dog does well in obedience training and other activities. A highly intelligent dog can be very demanding and do require lots of physical and mental stimulation. If you’re looking for a relatively laid-back dog, that doesn’t require lots of mental and physical stimulation, then you must fully understand the level of intelligence of your dog breed of choice.
Before committing to a certain dog breed, you must fully understand their intellect levels and their specific levels of energy. To keep your dog well-balanced and happy, their needs must be met and maintained.
All dog breeds have different needs when it comes to the level of exercise they require. For the high energy dogs; which are your typical working dogs, they have a lot of energy and require lots of daily exercise along with plenty of mental stimulation. A highly energetic dog breed would suit an individual or family that is equally as active and loves the outdoors. There are also breeds that have relatively low exercise needs, such as toy dog breeds. Although they require daily exercise and mental stimulation, they’re just as happy chilling at home with their loved ones. This type of dog breed would suit an individual or family that prefers the peace and quiet and relaxation.
Before deciding on your chosen dog breed, Mypetzilla recommends that you research the exercise needs and whether you’re well equipped before committing to buying or adopting a particular dog breed.
There are several dog breeds that are known and potentially predisposed to developing health related conditions. Sensible breeding can help prevent the onset of health related conditions and this should always be taken into condition when researching your dog breed of choice. Before committing to a dog, you should speak to the breeder about any health related conditions that may affect the dog you’re looking to buy or adopt. You can also request to see any test results from genetic testing.
There are many dog breeds that tolerate children really well and are not affected by the constant noise and need for play-time. However, there are some dog breeds that don’t do very well with children and can become frustrated and snappy. That being said, all children should be shown how to handle and care for a dog in their home and should always be supervised when playing. As much as a dog can become annoyed and snappy with a younger child, the child can also become less tolerant and misbehaved towards the dog.
Mypetzilla recommends that you always supervise play-time between your children and dog. Children need to respect the boundaries and feeding time for the dog and likewise for the child. We also strongly advise that play-time doesn’t get out of control and too rough which can cause injury to both child and dog.
There are lots of dog breeds that are well suited to living in an apartment. It’s worthwhile noting that you need to check that you’re allowed dogs in your building before committing to bringing one home. If you do decide to own a dog and are living in an apartment, then you must make sure that they have plenty of room to roam around and frequent walks outside to prevent them from becoming bored and depressed.
Mypetzilla recommends that you check as to whether you’re allowed dogs in your apartment building and to fully ensure your apartment is dog proof before committing fully to bringing a dog home.
All dog breeds shed to some extent, some more than others. With this, all potential dog owners should be aware of this, as it will be a matter of putting up with some hair or lots of hair being left around the house. Depending on the dog breed, there are certain times during the year where some dog breeds shed the most and this is typically around spring and autumn. However, there are some dog breeds that shed all year round.
If you’re very house-proud, they you may want to choose a dog breed that sheds very little. Mypetzilla strongly recommends that you fully research your dog breed of choice and their shedding levels before committing.
All dog breeds require different levels of grooming. Some dog breeds are easier to maintain than others and only require a weekly brush to help keep their coat in good condition. There are some dog breeds that require regular trips to the grooming parlour and this can come at a huge cost. Either way, all dog breeds require their coat and nails to be maintained and cared for.
Mypetzilla strongly advices that potential owners research the grooming needs and associated costs with their desired dog breed before fully committing.
Barking is a necessity for your dog to communicate. However, it can also be a nuisance to yourself and fellow neighbours if it’s not kept under control. If you live in an apartment, then you’re better off choosing a dog breed that doesn’t bark as much. If you live further out and far from civilisation, then it’s worthwhile looking into a dog breed that does bark and will bark to alert you of any other company on your property.
Mypetzilla advices that you research the behaviours of your dog breed of choice and whether this would work for you and your family. It’s worth noting that dogs can be trained to bark less and this will take a lot of effort and training from the owner.
Majority dog breeds form very close relationships with their owners and as a result can become very stressed when left alone for a period of time. If a dog is suffering with separation anxiety then they’re very likely to become destructive around the home as a way of dealing with their anxieties. Dog breeds that do form strong bonds with their owners are better accustomed to a household where one member of the family remains home, whilst the others are out, this is to help avoid further anxieties and destructive behaviours.
Mypetzilla recommends that all potential owners research their dog breed of choice on their bonding abilities and how well-adjusted they are to being left alone at home. It’s also worth noting that you should never leave your dog for longer than 4 hours alone at home.
There are certain dogs breeds that have very high intellect and therefore easier to train than other dog breeds. There is also a downside to this; as fast as they learn the new trick or command, they can easily pick up bad habits just as quick. Other dog breeds that don’t rank as high on the intellect scale require patience and plenty of reward treats from their owners during training.
Before committing to a certain dog breed, Mypetzilla advices you to fully research your dog breed of choice and their level of training needs.
All dog breeds have different energy levels. The working dog breed has one of the highest energy levels in comparison to the low-energy dog’s breeds such as the Toy dog breed group. To keep a dog truly happy, healthy and well-balanced, their energy levels must be met.
High-energy dog breeds need lots of exercise and mental stimulation. High energy dog breeds would suit an active family or person. Dog breeds that are considered as low-energy, love to spend the majority of their time relaxing and sleeping in their favourite, comfy spot. A low-energy dog breed would suit an individual that equally loves the quiet life and relaxing lifestyle. Of course, low-energy dogs still need their daily walks and mental stimulation, just not as much as a high-energy dog breed.
Mypetzilla recommends that potential owner research fully on the type of dog breed that would suit their existing lifestyle and to also take into consideration the dog breeds energy levels and exercise requirements.
Before you decide on what dog breed would be suitable for you and your family, you must consider whether they’re a friendly dog breed and if you already have other pets within the household. For homes that already have dogs and other domestic pets, then it’s wise to choose a dog breed that has a friendly personality and temperament.
There are some dog breeds that mix well with other dog breeds and there are others that don’t suit one another and this could potentially cause issues later on down the line.
Another important point to consider is whether the dog breed of choice is friendly towards people and children.
Mypetzilla recommends to research fully on the right dog breed for your family and to also consider their temperament and characteristics.
The exact origin and history of the Irish Terrier is not known but it is widely believed that this dog might have been a descendant of black and tan terrier-type hunting dogs of ancient Britain and Ireland just like the other terrier breeds of Irish and Scottish origins. The word “terrier” is derived from the Latin word terra which means “earth”, and the old terrier-type dogs of varying sizes hunted by digging into the ground to catch wild mammals and birds that were harmful to crops or farm animals such as rodents, foxes, rabbits, moles, and similar animals. The ancient wire-coated black and tan terrier that was described by Greek writers eventually evolved into the breed developed in Ireland with similar qualities to the modern Irish Terrier we know today – hardy, courageous, a skilled vermin hunter, people lover but with a reckless and yappy attitude. There is also an opinion that the Irish Terrier may be related to the Irish Wolfhound because the two have a strong resemblance in coat, colour and outline.
The Irish Terrier is a typical terrier that packs a lot of attitude in a small package. It is active, lively, unmindful, reckless, yappy, loves to hear his own bark, very good with children and quick to posture around other canines and will not back down when challenged. It is an active dog that needs constant physical and mental stimulation to stay happy. A bored terrier is a destructive terrier. It is loyal to its family and tends to bond strong relationship with a single member, often the pack leader whom it has a natural reverence of. Like most terriers, the Irish Terrier is often dominant with other dogs, which can pose a problem if the dog lives with other household canines. Early and proper socialisation is necessary to limit or reduce dominance. This breed also has a strong guarding instincts so it makes an excellent watchdog.
This terrier enjoys learning new things and loves being mentally stimulated. It can easily master new tasks and commands especially if reinforced with food and other positive reinforcement methods such as toys. It may be less eager to please other people unlike other breeds but the Irish Terrier enjoys being challenged mentally and loves solving difficult tasks. Firm, consistent and gentle handling is the best training from a handler who knows terriers. A lot of Irish Terriers can be trained to excel in dog agility, tracking, lure coursing, and obedience training.
Grooming, when done properly will help protect the dog from any weather condition. The harsh and wiry coat is fairly easy to groom. If kept as a pet, as opposed to a show dog, the Irish Terrier’s coat only needs hand-stripping once or twice a year to retain its weather-proof qualities. The wiry coat should not be clipped or it will lose its colour (lighten) and will become softer which will lose its weather-resistant property. Bathing is on an as-needed basis because water and shampoo/soap takes away the natural skin oils which help protect the breed.
Like most terriers, the Irish Terrier is a generally healthy breed with a lifespan of 12 to 14 years. Although very rare (thanks to its small stature), there are still some Irish Terriers that are affected by hip dysplasia. It has no known allergies to food unlike other dogs but it is prone to hypothyroidism and eye problems such as cataracts. Some Irish Terriers are known to be affected by elbow dysplasia and Von Willebrand’s disease.
The Irish Terrier, though a small breed is a very active one and requires plenty of exercises. The recommended physical activities for this breed are daily long walks and the chance to run and play off-lead in order to burst its enormous amount of reserve energy. However, caution must be taken when letting the dog outside as it can chase small animals and could get into a fight with other dogs. It is best to let the dog loose in a secured garden with a high fence where it can play ball with the children. It is an adaptable breed and can live in an apartment or condominium, provided that it is exercised on a daily basis.
An Irish Terrier is good with people and loves children. It can tolerate a rough-and-tumble play up to a certain extent. It is an ideal pet for a family with older children. However, it has that typical terrier attitude where it can quickly posture around other dogs and won’t even think twice of backing down when challenged. In that sense, early and proper socialisation is the key to raising an adult Irish Terrier that can get along well with other household pets.