Wire-Haired fox terrier Dog

The wire-haired fox terrier is an exceptional dog with a friendly and outgoing character. It is a perfect companion for very different types of families that are looking to have a jovial, affectionate and self-confident dog by their side. However, it is a very active dog so visits to the pipi-can or mountainous areas will be a priority to keep it active, happy and stress-free.

If you are thinking of adopting a wire-haired fox terrier, you have come to the right place. In this AnimalWised file we will detail with you all the care that this beautiful dog requires. In addition, we will also talk about curiosities about his character. It is very important to carefully review all the characteristics of this dog before adopting it. Read on and find out everything about the wire-haired fox terrier here.

History of the wire-haired fox terrier

The origin of this breed is not known for certain, but it is known that it comes from England , where it was used for fox hunting. Hence the name “fox”, which is fox in English. The selection for this type of work was intense and the dogs obtained were small but very strong and aggressive, capable of removing the fox from its den.

At one time, the wire-haired fox terrier and the smooth-haired fox terrier were considered the same breed. However, in the mid-1980s they were recognized as separate breeds. Some cynological associations, however, still consider the two breeds as varieties of the same breed. Today the wire-haired fox terrier is a very popular dog among exhibitors and has become one of the most appreciated dogs in structure and beauty competitions. It is also a popular pet in many countries and excels in some canine sports such as Agility and flyball.

Characteristics of the pure-haired or wire fox terrier

This terrier is small to medium in size , but very agile and powerful. Its body has a square structure, the height at the withers being equal to the length from the shoulder to the buttock. The back is short and strong, with a very short and slightly arched loin.

The chest is deep and the limbs are strong. According to the breed standard, the wire fox terrier “stands like a hunting horse that has a short back and is capable of covering a lot of ground.” Some of the characteristics of the wire-haired fox terrier are:

  • The face of this fox terrier is very characteristic, since it has a beard : it is formed by the curly fur that covers it.
  • The skull is practically the same length as the snout : it gradually narrows from the back to the eyes. It is worth mentioning that his nose is black.
  • The eyes are round : moderately small, they give the dog a cunning and intelligent expression. They are dark in color and the light-colored eyes are not visible.
  • The ears are small : “V” shaped and fall forward near the cheeks.
  • The coat is dense and rough : undoubtedly one of the main characteristics of the wire-haired fox terrier. Its length varies from about two centimeters at the shoulders to four centimeters in the region of the withers. The back, ribs and hind limbs have a softer undercoat. On the jaws, the hair is curly and long, forming the beard characteristic of the breed. On the extremities, the hair is dense and curly.
  • The predominant color of the wire-haired fox terrier is white : it covers most of its body. In addition, it has black, tawny or black and tawny spots.
  • The tail is set high and carried erect : without curving over the back. In the past it was mandatory to amputate, but currently the entire tail is accepted. The FCI breed standard accepts both a docked tail and an entire tail, but fortunately the legislations of several countries prohibit tail docking for aesthetic purposes.

According to the official breed standard (from the International Cynological Federation), male fox terriers reach a maximum height at the withers of 39 centimeters. Females are slightly smaller . The ideal weight of an adult male is 8.25 kilograms, with females being a little lighter.

Character of the wire-haired fox terrier

The wire-haired fox terrier is a dog that exudes energy and needs a lot of physical and mental exercise . This is definitely one of the most complicated dog breeds for a novice owner, because it takes a lot of time. It is the best pet for very active people, who like to do outdoor activities and have experience handling dogs.

Although it is a more independent dog than others, it also demands a lot of company and can be very insistent when it wants something. Leaving a wire-haired fox terrier alone for a long time means having problems. When bored, this terrier tends to bark and dig in the garden, in addition to nibbling everything he finds.

The hunting past of this breed has left it a very marked heritage. The prey drive of these fox terriers is very intense and therefore they tend to hunt any small animal. A wire-haired fox terrier is not the ideal choice if you have other pets . We must never forget that they were originally burrow hunting dogs.

Socialization with people is also important, since as adults, fox terriers tend to be reserved. On the other hand, this characteristic, added to the penchant for barking, can be an interesting quality for those looking for a small guard dog. We tell you more about dog socialization below.

On the other hand, being very active dogs, they are also very playful , even as adults . In this way, they are excellent companions for young and active people. They can also be ideal pets for somewhat older children, capable of treating the dog with respect. They are not ideal pets for small children, because these dogs tend to bite easily when teased or feel threatened.

In the past, it was considered that wire-haired fox terriers did not respond well to dog training, due to their strong personality. However, positive training methods, such as clicker training, achieve very good results.

Take a look at the following AnimalWised article on Positive reinforcement in dogs for more information on the subject.

Care of the wire-haired fox terrier

There are some types of care that are more specific for the wire-haired fox terrier than for other dogs. Let’s see them:

  • Feeding : if our wire-haired fox terrier is a sedentary dog, it will be enough to offer it about 200 grams of dry food. If we are dealing with a wire-haired fox terrier puppy, we will have to offer it 2 to 4 meals a day until it is 6 months old. From one year of age, 2 meals a day will be enough .
  • Exercise : These dogs need a lot of physical and mental exercise to get rid of their excess energy. They can live well in an apartment, but it is advisable that they have some outdoor, but fenced, space where they can run and play free from the leash. Dog sports like Agility can help these dogs burn off energy. Discover in ExpertoAnimal different types of Exercise for adult dogs .
  • Grooming : Hair care is easy when the fox terrier is a pet dog. Brushing two to three times a week is enough . Even so, you have to bathe him every two days, in addition to the occasional service at the dog groomer. However, when the wire-haired fox terrier is shown, hair care is more complex and must be done by an expert, either by the owner himself or by a professional dog groomer.

On the other hand, although they are independent dogs, they also need company. It is not a good idea to leave them alone for too long. Wire-haired fox terriers that live in the garden tend to dig and destroy plants. Those left alone inside the house tend to become destructive dogs .

Education of the wire-haired fox terrier

So that in the future we can enjoy a sociable and educated dog, it will be very important to work on the puppy’s education , especially if we want our dog to interact with other dogs and all types of pets, it will be very important to pay attention to the socialization process and take it to out in a positive and pleasant way for the dog.

It will also be very important to teach him basic dog commands so that he can be found off-leash and respond well to your instructions. In addition to helping the dog’s safety, practicing obedience fosters the bond between pet and owner, which will be greatly strengthened.

Wirehaired Fox Terrier Health

Wire-haired fox terriers tend to be long-lived dogs , reaching a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years. This breed does not present very frequent hereditary problems, but it may present some less frequent ones, such as:

  • Epilepsy
  • Deafness
  • waterfalls
  • Predisposition to dislocations
  • Thyroid problems
  • digestive dysfunctions

Visiting the veterinarian, following the vaccination schedule and deworming are the best tools to prevent health problems.

Where to adopt a wire-haired fox terrier?

After reading the characteristics of the wire-haired fox terrier dog, adopting one has probably crossed your mind. Due to its past as a hunting dog, it is currently a fairly popular breed of dog in our country, so there should be no problem or obstacle to your search or adoption of a specimen. You can try searching animal shelters or breed clubs , as well as dog shelters near your area.

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