The Fox Terriers, both the smooth and wirehaired, were developed in England in the 18th century for "bolting" (driving out foxes from their dens). They hunt as a pack and the first one to find the prey barks. The rest of the pack rush to join and surround the game. They like to play with a rat or squirrel, but if it bites or tries to escape, they quickly kill it and tear it apart. It is believed that his ancestors were old rough-coated black and tan working terriers. Today, Fox Terriers are mostly kept as family pets. Smooth and Wire Fox terriers are basically the same, except for minor differences in colors, markings and conformation. Their keen sense of smell makes no hiding place safe for a small rodent, rabbit or lizard.
Photo courtesy of Crispy Kennels
Country of Origin: Great Britain
FCI Classification: Group 3: Terriers; AKC Classification: Terrier Group
Size: Small (15.5 inches at shoulders maximum, females are slightly less)
Colors: White predominates with black, black and tan or tan markings. Brindle, red, liver or slate-blue markings are undesirable. The Wires variety have sometimes black saddle markings with a tan head, and the Smooths are either black with tan points or all tan or have some black saddling.
Litter Size: 4
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Life Span: 13 years
Grooming Requirements: The Smooth variety needs little grooming. To maintain his rough coat, the Wire should be brushed twice a week and hand-stripped every few months.
Personality: Alert, curious, adventurous, loyal and very intelligent. He is a busy, mischievous little fellow and may not be a dog for everyone.
Social skills: Extremely sociable
Suitability for Children: Loves playing with children and will tolerate more than most breeds; protective and makes an ideal, trustworthy friend for a child.
Exercise Needs: High. To prevent chewing, digging and other bad habits, Fox Terriers need lots of exercise and attention to keep them occupied.
Train Ability: Very intelligent and like to be clean, so housebreaking is usually fairly quick. They are very sensitive and respond well to firm, but gentle methods.
Health & Behavioral Issues: Fox Terriers are remarkably healthy and there are no serious problems with this breed. They do not require eye, hip or personality test when being sold as pets. Some may occasionally develop atopy, cataracts, cervical vertebral instability and epilepsy.