The Welsh Terrier (a.k.a. Welshie) is a small-medium dog similar in appearance to the Airedale Terrier and some claim it is the oldest breed native to the UK in existence today.
The Welsh Terrier has a double coat: a dense, wiry topcoat to repel water and a soft, short undercoat. Though born solid black, all Welshies eventually become a tan and black coloured coat which does not shed but requires brushing at least once a week to remove dead hair and prevent matting.
According to the breed standard, the maximum height allowed for Welsh Terriers is 39 cm, and they should weigh between 9 and 9.5 kg. The lifespan of the Welshie is 10 to 14 years.
Like all breeds originally bred to be working dogs, the Welsh Terrier is an active dog who needs a daily walk and lots of playtime.
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Welsh Terriers are smart little dogs who are easy to train and fast learners if taught by a strong, consistent leader. They can have an independent streak, which may make housebreaking a bit difficult, but once trained the Welshie is a loyal and devoted companion.
They are very loving and patient dogs who love children and can withstand some roughhousing. However, it is important to teach children how to behave around and interact with dogs – teach them never to approach a dog while it is sleeping or eating, and never leave young children unattended with the dog.
When raised with them, Welshies can get along with other dogs, but remember that terriers can be aggressive towards dogs and they view small pets like rabbits and rodents as prey.
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The Welsh Terrier is believed to be one of the oldest purebred terriers, and it is thought that the modern Welshie is not much different from its ancestors, bred several centuries ago. It was originally known as the “Black and Tan Wire-Haired Terrier”, and it is probable that it shares ancestors with the now-extinct Black and Tan Terrier.
The breed was first classified as “Welsh Terrier” in England in 1885.
Welshies were bred strong and tough to go to ground or into caves after hunts and retrieve game, often having to fight off otters and badgers.
They made their way to the US in 1888, and by 1901 were well established in the country. As of 2013 the Welsh Terrier was ranked 104th out of the 180 breeds recognised by the AKC.
Welsh Terriers, Perth: https://www.facebook.com/WelshTerriersPerthWesternAustralia
Welsh Terrier Club (UK): http://www.welshterrierclub.co.uk/