Fox Terrier

Breed Rating

family friendly:
Dog friendly:
Watch/guard dog:
Affection / Dependance:
Exercise needed:
Space needed:
Tendency to bark:
Grooming Requirements:
Tendency to bark:
Grooming Requirements:

Breed Attributes


Breed group: Terrier    Type: Pure Breed    Talent: ,


Size: Small     Weight: 15-19 lbs     Fur length: Short    Ears: Flappy    Fur type: Straight    Fur Color: 3 Colors, Black & White, Brown & White, White / Cream


Life Expectancy: 12-15 years    Rarity: Common    Availability: Easily available    Climate: Good for every climate.

Breed Details


The term Fox Terrier refers to two different terrier dog breeds. One of the breeds is called Smooth Fox Terrier and the other one is called Wire Fox Terrier. Both breeds have originated in England in the 19th century from a small number of British terrier breed dogs. The Fox Terrier breed has also given rise to other breeds that have diverged from these two breeds such as Jack Russell Terrier (JRT), Miniature Fox Terrier and Rat Terrier, all of which have diverged from Fox Terriers.

The Fox Terrier dogs, although divided into two different breeds, Smooth and Wire, have same characteristics and only differ in coat and colouring. The smooth Fox Terrier has short and hard, predominantly white coat while the Wire Fox Terrier has a hard and crisp double coat with coarse and dense undercoat that provides protection from cold weather. Individual hair can be wavy but overall coat is not curly. Both breeds range from 14-15.5 inches in height and weighs between 15-19lbs. Both breeds have long and wedge shaped head with small eyes and v-shaped ears.


Both the Smooth Fox Terrier and Wire Fox Terrier come in predominantly white colouring with black,tan or black and tan markings.


The coat of Smooth Fox Terrier is smooth, hard and dense and sheds very little. The Wire Fox Terrier has a dense but wiry coat. Hair should be so abundant so as not to let parting the coat with fingers reveal actual skin of the dog. Undercoat is soft, short and fine.


The Fox Terrier dogs are active, lively, playful and mischievous. Smart and intelligent, the dogs can outwit its master in an amusing manner that will leave the master laughing. They are playful and affectionate with children and their hardy structure makes them suitable for play with small children as well but children should be taught how to handle the dog as the dog is a child at heart itself. They can be too active for a very young child. These dogs play rough and high pitched voices and tendency to run can make them look like a prey. This may incite the dog to bite in excitement so play with small children should always be supervised. Gentle and friendly with its family, the dog is impulsively scrappy with other dogs and does not hesitate to pick-up a fight even with a larger dog. These dogs need early age socialization and training to minimize their aggressive attitude towards other dogs. They are alert and attentive and will signal arrival of an stranger. While this makes them a good watch dog, it can also mean the dog can become a nuisance, barking on every unfamiliar voice. Though originally used to flush quarry out of its hiding, the dog is now more popular as family and companion dog rather than a hunting dog.


The Smooth Fox Terrier has a short coat that does not need much grooming other than a weekly brushing with hard and bristle brush. The coat of Wire Fox terrier also sheds very little but brushing the coat once or twice is necessary to keep the coat clean and healthy. The wiry coat needs to be hand-stripped rather than clipped as clipping will damage texture of the coat and may also effect its colouring. Hand-stripping can be learnt by the owner or be done by a professional groomer.


Although they're highly intelligent, they're also willful, so Fox Terriers can be challenging to train. Be patient and keep your sense of humor handy. They thrive on consistency and routine, so providing clear rules and enforcing them in a firm and positive way will produce the most progress. Once you've unlocked the secret to motivating them, they can learn anything you can teach.


Being small does not mean the dog needs any less exercise than a medium or large dog; neither it means the dog does not need large space to run and play. The Fox Terrier will need a large open space to run off its high energy levels. The yard should be properly fenced as the dog will get excited by different voices and moving objects and may try to run after a cat, rabbit, squirrel or car due to its high prey drive. The dog will need half to full hour of exercise daily as well as playing time to keep its energy levels under control.

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