- AKC recognized in 1885
- Lifespan: 13-15 years
- Size: Medium
- Energy Level: Medium
- Recommended Crate Size: 30” dog crate*
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The exact origin of the Irish Terrier is unknown, but Ireland is a good place to start. Some believe it is Glasgow that takes the honor of developing one of the oldest terrier breeds. It was recognized by the AKC as a breed in 1875, arriving in the U.S. in the late 19th century.
However, it was also thought to have existed long before that. This dog is believed to be descended from several breeds like the Kerry Blue, the Irish soft-haired Wheaten Terrier, and the Scottish Terrier.
The Irish Terrier is considered to be one of the oldest of the Terrier breed club. It also has longer legs and body. Originally, it was bred for vermin hunting.
Some people also use it as a water or hunting dog, thanks to its strong prey drive. It has such an amazing nose which can track blood or human scent.
During World War I, the Irish Terrier served the military. It worked as a messenger due to its fearlessness in the face of danger. It also acted as a sentinel.
Presently, people mostly breed it as a family companion and performing as a show dog. It loves to be in the show ring.
This is the only in the Terrier club which has an all red coat. There were other ones with different colors in the past such as gray, and black and tan terriers. But, breeders ultimately decided to breed red terriers only.
The American Kennel Club formally recognized the Irish Terrier in 1885. The Irish Terrier is the 115th most popular breed in the United States as of this article's publish date.
These medium energy dogs are known as bold, dashing, and tenderhearted. They are active but not overly so. They are still able to relax in the house. Nevertheless, they need to have regular mental and physical challenges.
That’s why one must provide it with a lot of daily exercise. You can walk it out or train it for dog sports like dog agility. Approximately 30-60 minutes of exercise per day is recommended. Activities can include walking or light running.
The Irish Terrier can be a great family companion with a deep sense of loyalty. This breed is easy to train and can master new tasks in no time. Their fearless and stouthearted personality make them excellent watchdogs.
These characteristics also make it more dominant with all dogs. Consequently, there is an increased risk for it to start a fight. Early socialization and obedience training is necessary to prevent it.
The Irish Terrier has a long body proportion complete with a deep chest and muscular thighs.
Their average height is 18 inches. But, it is not unusual to see some dogs growing up to 20 inches. Males can weigh up to 27 pounds, while the females are 25 pounds.
Red is the only color accepted by the AKC for their coat. But, there are some variants of red you can find like bright red, red wheaten or golden red.
The hair usually grows strong and close. Their skin is hardly visible even if we part the hair with fingers.
It is recommended to provide feed formulated to medium-sized dog breeds. It is highly recommended to discuss your dog’s feed with your veterinarian and/or breeder in order to determine the size and frequency of meals in order to reduce the likelihood of health problems. It is also important to ensure that clean, fresh water is always available.
This dog breed needs regular brushing, stripping of dead hair, and trimming to maintain its short, wiry coat to always be in good condition.
Regular brushing of teeth, trimming of nails and checking for debris in its ears, will all ensure quality health between vet check-ups.
The Irish Terrier is active and athletic. They will need and enjoy regular exercises that you can do in a fenced backyard.
Pet Crates Direct recommends 30” dog crate* for most adult Irish Terriers.
* Links for crate sizes will bring you to the most appropriate Amazon page.