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August 2, 2013 at 8:00 AMComments: 0 Faves: 0

Welsh Terrier

By Victoria Swanson More Blogs by This AuthorFrom the Purebred Star Blog Series

Energetic, smart, and outgoing, the Welsh Terrier has an abundant amount of personality and spunk. Find out if the Welsh Terrier will make a good breed for you!

Don't mistake the Welsh Terrier for an Airedale Terrier. Although similar in look, the Welsh Terrier is smaller in size. The Welsh Terrier is believed to be a long-standing breed developed in Wales hundreds of years ago. They are terrier through and through. Today, they are more of a companion dog than hunter, however, the Welsh Terrier still holds onto the genetic traits of their strong hunting ancestors.

Playful with Kids - Good with Dogs, Not Cats

The Welsh is very good with children. Although they can be pretty rambunctious, this makes them better suited for rough play. Children should be taught how to respect their dog at an early age. With early and proper socialization, the Welsh Terrier can make a good fit for a family with kids.

When not challenged, this breed does well with other dogs. However, the Welsh Terrier will stand its ground if another dog tries to assert their dominance over them. Consider Doggy Daycare and regular dog park visits to give the Welsh Terrier plenty of opportunities to interact with other dogs appropriately.

If the Welsh Terrier is raised with a cat, they should do fine, but if you adopt an older dog, make sure to have them pre-screened around cats. (Most rescue organizations do this.) You don't want your household feline terrorized by an overzealous terrier!

Energy Galore!

The Welsh will run circles with their abundant energy level. They make a great running, hiking, or walking partner!

Although they are smaller then the Airedale Terrier, the Welsh weighs in at an average of 19 to 22 pounds, and can easily carry a small doggy backpack. A backpack is a great tool to help drain energy and to give this working breed a job.

Live near a lake have a pool? PERFECT! This breed loves to play in the water. Consider different water activities to do with your Welsh. Dock Diving may be a fun agility sport to consider with this vibrant breed.

Without proper exercise, the Welsh can become destructive and develop behavioral problems. This is not the ideal breed for someone that works long hours, unless you can utilize doggy daycare every other day. A fenced in-yard is a good idea for this busy-body.

Training can be a Challenge

Although they are considered smart, they are also very stubborn, which can make training difficult at times. The Welsh Terrier was bred to be an independent thinker, to hunt badgers, otter, and fox underground. They carry this independent trait with them today. It will be best to start training as young as 8 weeks old to get things starting off on the right paw.

Be patient and consistent when training your Welsh Terrier. Set up rules and boundaries to help teach your Welsh Terrier good manners.

The Welsh Terrier can be yappy too. This falls in line with those common terrier traits.

Grooming Galore!

This breed is born all black. Their coat color changes to the standard tan and black during  their first year of growth.

This is the perfect breed for allergy suffers! They don't shed, leaving skin dander around the house at a minimal. However, their coat does need professional stripping twice a year and regular brushings daily.

Nail trimmings should be done every 6-10 weeks, and they should be bathed as needed.

Their ears are tipped in a cute triangle, and their tails are docked, except for in European countries where it is illegal.

Health Concerns

The Welsh Terrier has relatively few health concerns, but they can suffer from epilepsy, glaucoma, skin allergies, and thyroid problems.The average lifespan of a Welsh Terrier is 10-12 years, with them maintaining their activity level well into their golden years.

Adopt First

Consider looking for a Welsh Terrier through rescue organizations first. Every year, there are millions of dogs being euthanized - not because they are bad dogs, but because there is no home for them and insufficient resources to care for them at rescue agencies. By adopting a dog, you are truly saving a life!

At the very least, NEVER purchase any dog from a pet store. Unfortunately, those puppies almost always come from puppy mills. Instead, look for a reputable breeder to work with.

On a final note, it is important to spay and neuter your puppy by 6 months old to have a healthy and happy pet for many years to come!


Original Dog Bible, 2nd Edition by Kristin Mehus-Roe

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