Welsh Terrier

Welsh Terrier on a summer meadow. Photo: CaptureLight/Getty Images

Quick Facts

  • Weight: 19 – 22 pounds
  • Height: 14 – 15.5 inches

The Look of a Welsh Terrier

Welsh Terriers have compact, medium-sized and well-proportioned frames covered in bristly, wiry coats. Their long, narrow heads have small, dark eyes and V-shaped ears that fold forward. Welsh Terriers are usually groomed to have bushy, hanging bears. They have strong necks that slope down to deep chests, short backs and medium-length tails that point straight up. Their coats are usually black & reddish tan or grizzle.


  • Bold
  • Curious
  • Calm
  • Steady
  • Energetic

Ideal Human Companion

  • Active seniors
  • Sporty types
  • Families
  • City dwellers

What They Are Like to Live With

Welsh Terriers have loads of energy. They love nothing more than to run, play, fetch, swim and dig outside. Highly intelligent, they are also very responsive to obedience training. Welsh Terriers are very active outdoors, but they do appreciate a little downtime. In fact, you may be able to convince yours to even cuddle for a few minutes; that is, until they spy a squirrel out the window. Welsh Terriers have a very steady personality, and they get along famously with children.

Things You Should Know

Welsh Terriers are relatively calm compared with other tall terriers. However, they are bold and extremely curious about other dogs and small animals: Always keep them on a leash in public.

Welsh Terriers can live as long as 12 years. These dogs are generally healthy, but some can develop skin and eye problems. Their hard, wiry coats need regular grooming and clipping to maintain their distinctive “look.”

Welsh Terrier History

Once known as the Black-and-Tan Wire Haired Terrier, the Welsh Terrier originated in Wales several hundred years ago. Used to hunt otters, foxes and badgers across land and water, the Welsh Terrier was adored for his tenacity on the hunt and his gentleness at home. The first Welsh Terriers were brought to the U.S. in the late 19th century. Since the early 1900s, when they first appeared at Westminster, they have earned many fans.

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