Canine Breed Menu

Irish Terrier

Irish Terrier

Irish Terrier
Breed Organization
Irish Terrier Club of America
Native Country
Other Names
Irish Red Terrier, Red Devil, Daredevil
Life Expectancy
Approximately 13-16 Years
Litter Size
Average 4-6 Puppies
Breed Group
AKC Terrier
Breed Appearance
They are small to medium sized dogs, once ranging greatly in size and appearance, but now a consistent square looking, bushy-bearded breed. They have short, small drop ears, and fiery brown eyes. They have ruffling in their fur on their legs and a small beard. They come in red to wheaten red colors. Irish Terriers make excellent companions whether they are playmates, hikers, watchdogs or just footwarmers. Despite their size, their guarding abilities are high. They are fierce to other dogs and threatening beings, and were once used for fighting, giving them the spirit they have today. They have been described to have “heedless, reckless pluck”, which contributed to their nickname of “Daredevil”. Irish Terriers, fierce as they are to mice, are affectionate and good tempered with people. Loyal to every member of the family, these Daredevils are a top-notch terrier known for their fighting spirit.

Breed Description
Head: Long. Flat, fairly narrow skull. Stop hardly visible. Strong jaws. Close, well-fitting lips.
Ears: Small, v-shaped, falling forward along the cheeks.
Eyes: Small. Dark color.
Body: Neither too long nor too short. No dewlap on neck. Deep, muscular chest. Muscular, very slightly arched loin. Strong, straight back
Tail: Set on fairly high. Carried gaily but not over the back or curled. Typically docked to three-quarters its normal length.
Hair: Dense, very compact, wiry, with broken appearance but still lying close to the body. Must not be curly or form tufts. Hair on the face is short (0.6 cm). The only long hair that is acceptable is a slight beard.
Coat: Whole-colored. Preferred colors are bright red, red wheaten, and golden red. White markings on the forechest and feet are permissible.
Size: Approx. 45 cm (18 in).
Weight: Dog: 12.2 kg (27 lb).Bitch: 11.4 kg (25 lb).

This terrier is thought to have existed in Ireland for centuries, but its origins have been obscured by time. The Irish Terrier could be descended from the old breed of wire-haired black and tan terrier and a larger variety of the Wheaten Terrier, which is said to have lived in the county of Cork. This breed's modern type was fixed in 1875. Before type was fixed, the breed's coloring could be red, black and tan, or even brindle. An Irish Terrier club was formed in 1879, and the first standard for the breed was established in 1880. During World War I, the Irish Terrier served side-by-side with English soldiers.

This robust, fast dog has great endurance and plenty of spirit. He is independent, combative, and stubborn. The Irish Terrier is affectionate, cheerful, and devoted to his owner, making him a good pet. This hunting dog, at home on land and in the water, is used to hunt hare, vermin, and otter. As a guard dog he can be ferocious if attacked and will fight to the death. The Irish Terrier is aggressive with other dogs. Firm but gentle training is required.

This is a very healthy breed and is not prone to any major hereditary disorders.

This dog can adapt to life as a house dog, but he requires considerable space and exercise. Brushing once or twice per week is required. This breed should be groomed two times per year.

Hunting Dog (shooting and with hounds), Guard Dog, Pet.

Horse Herd