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Irish Terrier

The Irish Terrier is a medium sized terrier breed that is active and fiesty. This native of Ireland requires regular exercise and minimal grooming.

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Physical Characteristics
  • Medium-sized, well-proportioned
  • Flat skull, long whiskers, bearded muzzle with powerful jaws
  • Straight, muscular, well-boned legs
  • Nose is black
  • V-shaped ears fold forward with shorter hair
  • Coat: Wiry, medium-length hair
  • Bushy eyebrows; small, dark eyes
  • Moderately long neck
  • Solid color - may be red, golden, or wheaten
  • Height 18-19"
  • Weight 25-27 pounds
  • Life expectancy 12-15 years
  • Good-tempered, spirited, independent, affectionate, loyal, smart
  • Interaction with people: Thrives on companionship, loyalty and devotion to its master
  • Interaction with animals: Can be aggressive toward other dogs; not recommended for noncanine pets
  • Training: Needs firm, early training. Housebreaking can be difficult
  • Protection: Good guard dog; is very protective of human family
Medical Conditions
  • Cystinuria (urological disorder)
While the listed ailments may be common in this breed, not all members of the breed suffer from these conditions. Responsible breeders screen for orthopedic and genetic diseases.
At Home
  • OK for apartments if sufficiently exercised
  • Needs small yard
  • Need long, brisk daily walks
  • Should be on leash except when in a safe, enclosed space
  • Likes to dig, explore and chase
  • Minimal shedder
  • Brush regularly with stiff bristle brush
  • Remove dead hair with fine-tooth comb
Other Facts
  • Used as a messenger and sentinel in World War I
  • Good water dog and natural vermin hunter
  • Useful in police work, military work, retrieving, tracking and guarding
  • Oldest of terrier breeds
  • Has distinction of being the only all-red terrier
  • Nicknamed "Daredevil" for its bold and inquisitive nature
Breed History
  • Native to Country Cork, Ireland
  • The earliest images of this breed date to the 1700s
  • First records of the Irish Terrier as a recognized breed date to 1875
  • Fourth most popular breed in England in the 1880s
  • The Irish Terrier Club of America was established in 1896
For more information about this breed and breeder referral contacts, please visit the Irish Terrier Club of America For breed rescue opportunities, visit ITCA Rescue
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