The Airedale Terrier is the largest and hardiest of the terrier breeds. They are striking with their wiry coats and distinct coloring. The feisty terrier personality means this is a dog you won’t soon forget!
See if the Airedale Terrier might be the dog for you!Overview:
- Height: 23″-24″ at the withers. Females may be slightly smaller
- Weight: 55-66 pounds
- Historical Function: Otter hunters
- Modern Function: Companion, watchdog
- AKC Classification: Terrier
Physical Characteristics: The Airedale Terrier is a strong, sturdy, square dog known as the king of terriers due to it’s size and outgoing personality. The coat of the Airedale Terrier is of medium-length in a distinctive tan with a black saddle. It has a harsh topcoat and soft undercoat. It is known by its distinctive beard around the muzzle.
History of the Breed: The Airedale was developed in the Valley of the Aire in England to hunt the plentiful small game in the area. They were used to hunt river rats and otters. Because of hound influences in the line, the Airedale also has the ability to track well so has also been used for hunting larger game as well. This breed has also been used as a police dog.
Temperament: The Airedale is a lively, active dog bred for inquisitiveness. They can be too rowdy for young children, but with proper socialization at a young age both dog and children can do well together. The Airedale is both courageous and protective, yet fairly friendly with strangers. They are intelligent, pleasant and loyal. They are sensitive and responsive, and can be obedience trained at a high level, though they do have a tendency to be stubborn. They require variety in activity and commands or they can become bored and destructive.
- Best suited for: families with older children, firm, kind trainers, active lifestyles, allergy sufferers.
- Preferred living conditions: Airedales are not suitable for apartment life. They need plenty of exercise and a good-sized yard. They are very social and intelligent, and will keep yards vermin free!
Care and Health:
- Grooming Requirements: The coat requires regular and extensive grooming. They need to have their coat stripped at least twice a year, which promotes very little shedding. This can be helpful for allergy sufferers. The beard needs daily washing to keep food and debris out of it.
- Exercise Needs: This is a high-energy, high-intelligence dog that requires a daily walk with a firm pack leader human. These dogs are quick to ascertain inexperienced handlers and will chase after wildlife, so be sure to handle them with calm confidence. The first two years of life with an Airedale can be stressful for the owner because of the exercise needs and inquisitiveness that may get the dog into trouble.
- Life expectancy: 10-12 years
- Health concerns: A very hardy breed, although some may suffer from eye problems, hip dysplasia and skin infections. If your Airedale Terrier has dry skin, he should be fed an adjusted omega-6/omega-3 fatty acid ratio in the diet.
Breed Club Links: The Airedale Terrier Club of America, Inc.
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