AKC Breed Groups: Terriers

The American Kennel Club categorizes their 190 breeds into 8 different groups. As part of our ongoing breed series (Getting to Know Your…), we wanted to take a global look at these classifications and what characteristics separate the dogs into these different groups.

The AKC breed groups are:
  • Herding Group
  • Sporting Group
  • Toy Group
  • Working Group
  • Hound Group
  • Non-Working Group
  • Terrier Group
  • Miscellaneous Group

Today, we look at the Terrier group.The Terrier Group is comprised of 31 different breeds both large (Airedale) and small (West Highland Terrier). The overriding characteristic of the Terrier breed is a good degree of feisty mixed with a fair amount of stubbornness.

Terriers  were bred specifically to hunt and kill vermin. The will dive into tunnels, haystacks, or tree trunks in pursuit. It’s what gives them their distinctive pugnacious attitude and most of them are always ready for a fight. Since they typically did their hunting on their own, they were never widely socialized with other dogs and unless socialized from an early age, they are better off in a single dog family and should only interact with other dogs under  a watchful eye.

Terriers are typically not the kind of pet that is going to sit in your lap and cuddle. Remember, they were bred to be independent and rely on their own wits. Humans weren’t usually a part of that equation, so lap dogs they are not.Their independent streak extends throughout their behavior.

They are not easy to train, will likely runaway whenever they get the chance and if they do stick around, they exhibit a fairly large ego and like to run the household. As problem solvers, they do take to clicker training, but you have to be dedicated and work consistently with them to elicit the behaviors you desire. Terrier owners must possess a level of determination that matches their dog’s.

They are very energetic and need a fair amount of exercise or else they will dig up your backyard. They will chase anything they get an opportunity to chase, rabbits, squirrels, kids on bikes so be aware of this tendency. They can be quite vocal and make good watchdogs.

Terriers are also lots of fun. Their energetic spirit means they are always up for an adventure, so they make good hiking, running or walking companions. They also excel at dog sports like agility training.

If you appreciate a challenge and enjoy a dog with a big, feisty personality then a Terrier is for you.Complete list of Terrier Group:

  1. Airedale Terrier
  2. American Hairless Terrier
  3. American Staffordshire Terrier
  4. Australian Terrier
  5. Bedlington Terrier
  6. Border Terrier
  7. Bull Terrier
  8. Cairn Terrier
  9. Cesky Terrier
  10. Dandie Dinmont Terrier
  11. Glen of Imaal Terrier
  12. Irish Terrier
  13. Kerry Blue Terrier
  14. Lakeland Terrier
  15. Manchester Terrier
  16. Miniature Bull Terrier
  17. Miniature Schnauzer
  18. Norfolk Terrier
  19. Norwich Terrier
  20. Parson Russell Terrier
  21. Rat Terrier
  22. Russell Terrier
  23. Scottish Terrier
  24. Sealyham Terrier
  25. Skye Terrier
  26. Smooth Fox Terrier
  27. Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
  28. Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  29. Welsh Terrier
  30. West Highland White Terrier
  31. Wire Fox Terrier





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