12 to 15 years
4 to 6
Country of Origin:
The ideal weight for males is 27 pounds, for females 25 pounds. The height at the shoulder is 18 to 20 inches.
The coat on a healthy Irish Terrier should be dense and wiry in texture. It will be rich in quality and it will have a somewhat broken appearance. It should lie fairly close to the body.
The individual hairs should grow so closely together that when parted with the fingers the skin is hardly visible. It should be noted that on the sides of the body the coat is never as harsh as on the back and quarters, but it should be plentiful and of good texture.
This dog has loads of spirit, is independent and can be a little stubborn! However, they are a cheerful loving dog and would make an excellent pet as they are very loyal and affectionate towards his owner. However males can become aggressive towards other dogs.
Even though this terrier has a strong and sturdy body, its movement is lithe and active. With a racy (appearing powerful yet limber) and graceful outline, the Irish Terrier has a moderately long body and does not possess the short back trait of many long-legged terriers.
This breed combines agility, speed, power, and endurance, enabling it to perform a range of tasks. Its intense expression matches its nature. The dog’s broken coat, meanwhile, is wiry and dense, and short enough to not disturb the body shape. This coat is usually bright red, golden red, red wheaten, or wheaten. However, puppies may have black hair at birth, which should disappear before they are full grown. In addition, whole-colored dogs may have a small patch of white on the chest.
The rest of the breed’s history before that is lost in time. From appearance, the Irish Terrier appears closely related to the Airedale Terrier, as well as the smaller Wire Fox Terrier. It is thought that the Black and Tan Terrier of the time added to the mix of the breed and helped create the Irish Terrier we have today. During World War I, the Irish Terrier was used as a messenger dog in the trenches and acquired a reputation for being fearless and intelligent. This breed gained recognition from the Irish Kennel Club in the 19th century, and was Ireland’s first terrier to receive recognition as well.
With an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years, the Irish Terrier may suffer from minor health problems like urinary stone, corns on the feet, and hereditary urinary problems.
They have good temper, most affectionate, and absolutely loyal to mankind. Tender and forbearing with those they love, this rugged, stout-hearted terrier will guard his master, his mistress and children with utter contempt for danger or hurt. His life is one continuous and eager offering of loyal and faithful companionship and devotion. They are ever on guard, and stand between his home and all that threatens.
The Irish Terrier requires regular brushing with a stiff bristle brush to minimize shedding and remove dead hair. Bathing should only be done when absolutely necessary using a mild shampoo to preserve the integrity of the coat. The Irish Terrier is a relatively healthy breed although some are prone to hypothyroid conditions.
The Irish Terrier is quite intelligent but may be willful and difficult to housebreak. The crate training method is recommended. Intense early socialization and obedience are crucial for this breed. They do not respond to harsh or heavy-handed methods. Training the Irish Terrier must be done with firmness, fairness, consistency, respect, and commitment. They excel in hunting, retrieving, guarding and tracking as well as police and military work.
Since Irish Terriers were bred for active work, these dogs need plenty of regular exercise. They need at least a daily long, brisk walk, where the dog is made to heel beside or behind the human holding the lead. Do not let this terrier walk out in front, as in a dog's mind the leader leads the way, and that leader needs to be the human.