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The Energetic – Wire Fox Terrier

The Wire Fox Terrier, classified in the terrier group, is a breed known for its willingness to be trained, its agile athletic skills, and its wiry coat. The Wire Fox Terrier is sometimes also known as the Wirehaired Terrier and the Wire Hair Fox Terrier.

A brief history of the Wire Fox Terrier

Wire_Fox_TerrierThe Wire Fox Terrier breed is believed to have descended from a rough-coated working terrier breed which was once prevalent in Wales, Durham and Derbyshire. This rough-coated working breed, now extinct, was originally developed as a hunting dog. According to historians, the dogs were specifically bred to chase their prey–usually foxes or other fast, agile prey–into underground borrows. The dogs would be pulled out of the burrows by their owners, using their short strong tails as a type of ‘handle’ with which to pull them out of the burrow. Although several famous people, including Queen Victoria and her son Edward II, owned Wire Fox Terriers, the breed itself was not particularly popular as a companion animal until the late 1920s and 1930s. In 1929, the incredibly popular The Adventures of Tintin comic was first released–the character of Snowy (or Milou in the original French), who was a companion to the titular Tintin, was a Wire Fox Terrier who was a central character in almost all of the series’ albums. The widely popular film series The Thin Man also featured a Wire Fox Terrier, adding to the breed’s growing popularity as a companion or pet.

Characteristics

The Wire Fox Terrier is a small to medium sized dog, which typically does not grow to be any taller than 15.5 inches in height at the shoulders. It will typically weigh between 15 and 21 lbs. Female Wire Fox Terriers are smaller and weigh less than ales of the same breed. The breed’s most distinctive feature is its rough, wiry coat, which is usually predominately white with a ‘saddle’ marking that may come in black, sable, brown, red, and occasionally other colors.

The Wire Fox Terrier is known for being an energetic, intelligent breed which has a noticeably low tolerance for boredom, despite its relatively small size. The Wire Fox Terrier requires almost constant attention or stimulation due to its energy levels and its ability to get bored without something to do. Without proper redirection of their energy, which is mainly centered on hunting and chasing instincts, they are prone to destructive and negative behaviors. They may chase cars, bikes, people, or other animals; they may attack other animals after chasing them as if they were prey, etc. For this reason, many Wire Fox Terriers are abandoned or given to dog shelters. Wire Fox Terriers can make an excellent family pet: however, they require a consistent, firm owner who knows how to redirect the ‘prey instincts’ natural to the dog into acceptable behavior.

Did you know? Trivia

  • Wire Fox Terriers are popular in film because of how easy they are to train. Some of the films in which the breed appears are: The Thin Man, Moonrise Kingdom, Jack Frost, and Bringing Up Baby.

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