Irish Terrier: origins, physical characteristics and personality

Irish Terrier: Origins, Physical Characteristics, and Personality

Irish Terrier

The multi-talented Irish Terrier is a very convenient dog that has a convenient size, besides being a guard dog, and a vermin killer. He was once known as the “poor man’s sentinel, the farmer’s friend, and the gentleman’s favorite.”

Do not miss our posts.


The Irish Terrier is one of the oldest Terriers. He was first recognized at a dog show in Glasgow, Scotland in 1875 or so.  By 1879, Ch. Erin and Killney Boy, two Irish Terriers were producing many offspring and are considered the foundation of the dog breed.

During the 1880s, these dogs were the most popular of Great Britain. It quickly spread to the United States and it was the first Terrier to be registered to the AKC.

Physical characteristics

According to standards, the Irish Terrier has to be racy, red, and rectangular. His body is proportionally larger than the Fox Terrier.

The coat has to be golden red, red wheaten, or wheaten, besides dark red, which is the most characteristic color. Standards allow a little white patch on the chest. The coat should lie flat against his body and never too long as to hide his body. The size of the Irish Terrier varies greatly. They can go from 48 cm to even 53 cm. Males have a weight of 15 kg and 13 kg for the females.


Given his purpose of being a companion, guard dog, and hunter, the Irish Terrier is spirited, alert, good-tempered, and adaptable dog. He is also very curious and devoted to his family. He is also smart, independent, and strong-willed.

Caring for an Irish Terrier

This dog needs constant mental and physical challenges. They are escape artists so a tall fence is great for these dogs. Provide regular exercise of 20 to 30 minutes each day.

These dogs will do well in a house as well as in an apartment. He is not really a running type but he might join you for a jogging session; just wait until he is fully grown before that.


If you want this dog to do what you tell him, you have to make sure that there is something in it for him. Always give him positive reinforcement and be creative and have a firm hand. This dog will get bored easily so make dog training sessions short and varied.

Fun Facts

  • They were used as sentinels during WWI.
  • The Irish Terrier is the only all-red Terrier.

Don’t forget to pay us a visit here in Dogalize. We have everything you need to become the dog owner your pet deserves. Take a look around and check out everything we have in store for you.