Norwich Terrier Guide

Terrier Dog Breeds

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This spirited dog, one of the smallest of the working terriers, is sturdy and stocky, of square proportion. Its small size is an asset when following vermin or fox down tight passageways. Its teeth are large, to aid in dispatching its quarry. It shows great power in its movement. The tail should be long enough to grasp firmly, so that the dog can be pulled from a hole. The double coat has a hard, wiry and straight outer coat that lies close to the body and is thicker around the mane for protection. The dog bears a slightly foxy expression.

The Norwich terrier, like the Norfolk, is a true terrier at heart, always ready for adventure and excitement. It is a hunter and may chase small animals. It is a pert, independent, amusing — but sometimes challenging — companion, best suited for people with a sense of adventure and humor.


FAMILY terrier



ORIGINAL FUNCTION ratting, fox bolting

TODAY'S FUNCTION earthdog trials

AVERAGE SIZE OF MALE Height: 10 Weight: 12

AVERAGE SIZE OF FEMALE Height: 10 Weight: 12


Energy level High energy

Exercise needs Medium

Playfullness Moderately playful

Affection level Very affectionate

Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly

Friendliness toward other pets Friendly

Friendliness toward strangers Friendly

Ease of training Moderately easy to train

Watchdog ability High

Protection ability Not very protective

Grooming needs Moderate maintenance

Cold tolerance Medium tolerance

Heat tolerance Medium tolerance

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The Norwich needs to stretch its legs with a good walk or short run every day. It especially likes combining a run with a chance to explore, but any such off-leash expeditions must be done only in a safe area. It is better suited as a house dog with yard access, but it can stay outdoors during the day if need be in temperate to warm climates. Its wiry coat needs combing one to two times weekly, plus stripping of dead hairs three to four times a year.
• Major concerns: none
• Minor concerns: none
• Occasionally seen: cardiomyopathy, patellar luxation
• Suggested tests: (cardiac), (knee)
• Life span: 13-15 years
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Short-legged ratting terriers have long been valued in England, but only in the 1880s did the breed that would eventually become both the Norwich and Norfolk terriers emerge from obscurity. At that time, owning one of these small ratters became a fad among Cambridge University students. The little terriers became known as CanTab, and later Trumpington, terriers. Around 1900, a Trumpington terrier named Rags came to a stable near Norwich and gained notoriety as a ratter as well as sire. He sired countless offspring and is the patriarch of the modern Norwich. One of his sons came to America and proved to be an amiable ambassador for the breed. To this day, many people still refer to the Norwich as the "Jones" terrier, after this dog's owner. The Jones terrier was incorporated into various foxhound hunt packs. The AKC recognized the breed in 1936. At that time the breed had both prick and drop ears, but in 1979 the dropped-eared variety was recognized as a separate breed, the Norfolk terrier. Although lacking the flash of its long-legged competitors in the terrier group, the Norwich has proven itself as formidable a competitor in the show ring as it ever was in the field. Despite its show ring success, however, it enjoys only moderate popularity as a pet.
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