Irish Terrier Info & Irish Terrier Breeders
The Irish Terrier is a dog breed from Ireland, one of many breeds of terrier. The Irish Terrier is considered one of the oldest terrier breeds. The Dublin dog show in 1873 was the first to provide a separate class for Irish Terriers. By the 1880s, Irish Terriers were the fourth most popular breed in Ireland and Britain.
The Irish Terrier is an active and compactly sized dog that is suited for life in both rural and city environments. Its harsh red coat protects it from all kinds of weather.
Irish Terriers are active dogs and need and enjoy consistent mental and physical challenges; well-trained Irish Terriers may do well at a variety of dog sports, such as dog agility. The Irish Terrier is full of life, but not hyperactive; it should be able to relax inside the house and be roused to full activity level quickly.
Irish Terriers are good with people. They have a highly developed sense of loyalty and it is important that they have a strong responsible leader, for whom they have natural respect. Most Irish Terriers love children and tolerate rough-housing to a certain extent. Irish terriers need exercise; do not get one if you are not prepared to walk it. They enjoy training, new tasks are easily mastered with food and toys working equally well as motivation. Irish terriers have less of an eagerness to please people than some other breeds but have mental ability and enjoy puzzle solving. They respond best to consistent, reward based training from a relaxed, authoritative person. As with all dog breeds, violence should never be used - instead use distraction and reward the behaviour you want. It is always best to outwit and lure. When seeking a trainer, one should look for a person who has experience with terriers.
Irish Terriers are often dominant with other dogs. As with any dog, poorly socialized individuals can start fights and early socialization is a necessity. Most have strong guarding instincts and when these instincts are controlled, make excellent alarming watchdogs.
There are more people joining organised dog sports with their terriers. The obedience training required at a certain level in most dog sports is fairly easy, though the precision and long-lasting drive needed in the higher levels may be hard to achieve. Many Irish Terriers excel in dog agility, even though it may be hard to balance the speed, independence and precision needed in the higher levels. To date there is one Agility Champion in the US, and a handful of Finnish and Swedish Irish terriers compete at the most difficult classes.
Irish Terriers have a good nose and can learn to track either animal or human scent. Many Irish Terriers enjoy Lure Coursing, although they are not eligible for competition like sight hounds are. In Finland one Irish Terrier is a qualified Rescue Dog specializing at Sea Rescue.