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We know from depictions of Welsh Terriers in paintings and prints that this breed is quite old, heralding originally from Wales. In fact this feisty little guy may have been one of the first Terriers every recorded.
Their popularity spread throughout England during the 19th Century.
Welsh Terriers were originally called “Black-and-Tan Wire Haired Terriers” or “Old English Terriers” as well as “Old Reddish-Black Wirehaired Terrier”, due to the variety of colors they came in originally.
Irish Terriers were commonly used to hunt foxes, otters, and badgers, and they excelled at finding, digging for and eradicating vermin.
The Welsh Terrier breed eventually made its way across the Atlantic with a gentleman named Prescott Lawrence who brought his breed to America around 1888. Their popularity has grown steadily ever since.
• Hypo-Allergenic, great for allergy suffers.
• Low shedder, with a coat that requires regular, and professional grooming.
• The Welsh Terrier is intelligent and always ready to work or play.
• Affectionate and social this breed is energetic, with a lovely disposition, loyal and devoted to their families.
• Great with kids.
• Do well in apartments/condo lifestyle.
• As a Terrier, they have a strong prey drive, so need to be leashed ~ as they’ll chase anything that’s moving.
• Can be combative with other dogs.
• Barking and digging are common in this breed.
• The “Terrier” in him makes him somewhat independent and training can be a challenge.
• Like all Terriers, the Welshie needs early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences — the earlier the better.
• A healthy breed overall.
Welsh Terriers are very alert dogs, which is what makes them good hunters. However, they are also very friendly and intelligent. They love pleasing their master and show a good level of self control. They are rarely shy and do well in the city or country, though some exhibit a much stronger hunting instinct than others. They are great family pets because they are loving and loyal and get along quite well with children, even tolerating the roughness of toddlers quite well. Because of their intelligence, they are happiest when they have activities to keep them occupied, though they are rarely active to a fault. It's important to understand that the general nature of terriers is to be active and engaged in activities. However, of the many breeds of terrier, the Welsh terrier is one of the calmest and most tolerant of inactivity.
These dogs need interesting things to do each day. They are quite curious and playful, which makes them great dogs for children who will truly use them as companion animals. Most love to swim. All in all, they make a very loyal, loving and hardy pet.
Bitches are more alert and quicker to learn. They are also quite independent and tend to love people more than other dogs. They bark more than male Welsh Terriers, as well. The bitches are also the ones most likely to be hunters. In fact, in the American Working Terrier Trials, whether the hunting abilities of terriers are measured, two out of three Welsh Terriers achieving their titles are bitches.
Male Welsh Terriers are typically more easy going and friendlier than bitches. They are also quieter and steadier than females. However, Welsh Terriers, in general, are friendly and rarely aggressive. Though they show aggression rarely, they are a formidable enemy when they do decide to fight back. They have been bred to hold their own when required to do so.
Welsh Terriers shed little or no hair, making them a great pet for the home. At least two times a year, however, their coats should be plucked. This regular plucking, along with occasional bathing, keeps the dog in good shape. They should not be bathed too often, as it will remove the natural oils in their coats and soften the wiriness of their hair. Their coat is coarse and durable, so it resists dirt fairly well. However, they should be brushed once or twice a week.
If your Welsh Terrier will be showed he will need the longer hair at his feet, on his belly and on the foreface trimmed regularly to emphasize the dog's rectangular outline.
You'll find few dogs more tireless than the Welsh Terrier. However, at the same time they don't require a great amount of exercise. If they're owned by an outdoor lover, they will be quite happy to run with them for as long as their owner desires. They love to chase things and will happily play fetch. However, since they are prone to chase whatever they see moving it's not wise to let them off their leash in an open area.
In general, this breed will be healthier and happier with an owner who exercises him regularly, but is not likely to become destructive if he is not exercised as frequently as other breeds. They love to swim, run, walk and play chase, so there are quite a few activities you can pursue with your Welsh Terrier to keep him active and happy. Welsh Terriers are particularly good dogs for agility classes or earth dog clubs (where dogs hunt by digging and tunneling after small critters who are secured in a sturdy cage so they can't be harmed) because of their love for mental and physical stimulation.
Welsh Terriers are brave and steady. Early training should include socialization to ensure that they don't become timid of strangers, though this tendency is uncommon. They are calmer than longer legged terriers, so they are typically not destructive dogs. Some can be diggers, so it's important to watch out for this trait and nip it in the bud with training techniques.
Welsh Terriers are very intelligent.
They will quickly understand what you want from them, but they are also cunning enough to try and divert you to what they'd like to do. Variety in their activities and consistency in their training will keep them happy and more obedient.
Crate training works well for house breaking a Welsh Terrier. They can be a bit difficult to house train, so confining them to a crate when you are not actively engaged with them is a good idea until they are completely house trained. However, you must also give them regular opportunity to go to the bathroom in the appropriate spot in order for crate training to be successful.
Because Welsh Terriers like to swim, they may dig or splash in their water bowls or put their face completely underwater when drinking.
Some Welsh Terriers make a game out of escaping from their confines, so it's important to have a very secure fence if you plan to leave them outside alone. In spite of their size, many have jumped over fences of six feet tall or more, and like most terriers, they like to dig. Therefore, your fence must be secure at the bottom, too.
Welsh Terriers like to play fetch and retrieve. It's important to teach them which items are their toys and which are not, or you'll find your articles of clothing strewn about the house and yard.
Welsh Terriers are moderately territorial and only occasionally have dominance challenges. When the terrier does present a dominance challenge it will usually be through willful disobedience. For this reason, you should train your Welsh Terrier with a firm hand, and not show timidity toward him. However, physical punishment is not a good way to show dominance over this breed. This dog was bred not to tolerate being attacked by the prey they were hunting, so they are more likely than other breeds to growl or snap at you if you become too physical with them. You'll be far more successful by simply maintaining your place as master through your voice and consistent training. Once you've lost your dominance over a Welsh Terrier, it will be very difficult to win back.
Some Welsh terriers, particularly the females, are barkers, and can often have a nerve wracking, high pitched bark. If you leave your dog alone all day, he or she may have a tendency to bark and annoy the neighbors out of boredom. Train them early and train them consistently and you'll not find a better companion. They are eager to please and love blending into a family. But, like any other terrier, they are active and somewhat stubborn. If you provide regular activity for them and teach them who's master early one, you'll be very happy with your choice in pet.
Welsh Terriers are typically very hardy and healthy dogs. There are no specific medical defects noted in the breed.