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Fox Terrier Wire Coat

Fox Terrier Wire Coat

Small but mighty, the Wire Fox Terrier is a robust, short-backed terrier with a thick protective wire coat. Alert and sharp in expression, with a fearsome set of eyebrows and profuse beard, the Wire Fox Terrier comes in white, with tan, black or black and tan markings.

  • Dog suitable for owners with some experience
  • Extra training required
  • Generally healthy breed
  • Enjoys active walks
  • Enjoys one to two hours of walking a day
  • Small dog
  • Minimum drool
  • Requires grooming every other day
  • Chatty and vocal dog
  • Barks, alerts and may be physically protective/suspicious of visitors
  • Might not like other dogs
  • May need additional training to live with other pets
  • May need additional supervision to live with children
  • Needs a small garden
  • Can live in semi-rural areas
  • Can be left occasionally with training

Key Facts

Lifespan: 13 – 14 years
Weight: Around 8kg
Height: Around 39cm
Colours: White, with tan, black or black and tan markings
Size: Small
Kennel Club Group: Terrier


Family-friendly: 4/5
Exercise needs: 4/5
Easy to train: 4/5
Tolerates being alone: 2/5
Likes other pets: 2/5
Energy level: 3/5
Grooming needs: 3/5
Shedding: 3/5
Wire Coated Fox Terrier playing on the grass


Sharp, independent minded and clever, the quick little Wire Fox Terrier is a formidable foe should you happen to be a rat, mouse or fox. Typical of the terrier type, the Wire Fox is inclined to kill first, ask questions later, and so owners should be aware of their high prey drive and desire to behave like a terrier!  Around the house, Wire Fox Terriers are good and amusing companions, if given sufficient training and solid socialisation and habituation to family life – however a bored or under-stimulated Fox Terrier is likely to be loud and destructive.

Fox Terrier with Wire Coat sitting on the grass

History and Origins

Country of Origin: Britain

Developed in the 19th Century from a variety of working terrier types, particularly the wire coated black and tan terriers from Wales, Derbyshire and Durham. They were used to flush out foxes who had gone to ground and for general ratting and watch dog purposes. Originally the Fox Terrier was classed as one breed with two coat varieties, the Wire and the Smooth, however they are now considered separate breeds with their own respective breed standards.

Did you know?

Did You Know?

The name ‘terrier’ derives from the Latin ‘terra’ meaning earth. Small terriers like the Wire Fox Terrier were original bred to go to ground, down into the holes that foxes and badgers live in. This means being small enough to fit into those holes, brave enough to face a frightened fox or badger head on, and nimble enough to drive them out of their den. It is therefore not a surprise that many terriers believe themselves to be far bigger and more fearsome than their actual size suggests.

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