Glen of Imaal Terrier Breed Guide

Glen of Imaal Terriers are very small dogs with dense, medium-length coats that come in wheaten, blue, or brindle. Their outer coats are harsh and their undercoats are soft. These dogs have pricked ears, round and brown eyes, black noses, and strong muzzles. Glen of Imaal Terriers measure 12.5 to 14 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh between 32 and 40 pounds.

They get along great with children, but these dogs consider anything with fur to be game worthy of chasing and attacking. This applies to other dogs, cats, and small animals.

Glen of Imaal Terriers, like other terriers, believe they are bigger and more powerful than they are. Because of this, the breed is full of spunk and may try to boss around much bigger dogs. These dogs are very friendly, and they are quieter than other terriers, making them a good choice for apartment homes. They do not get along with other pets, though, and are especially intolerant of cats. Their coat sheds little and is easy to groom, and they don't require much exercise.

The Glen of Imaal Terrier is the least known of the four Irish terrier breeds. It is also the only terrier breed native to Ireland that is not defined by a single coat color.

Glen of Imaal Terriers are happy, easygoing, and relaxed companion animals. They get along great with children, but these dogs consider anything with fur to be game worthy of chasing and attacking. This applies to other dogs, cats, and small animals. When outdoors, the breed's calm demeanor turns a bit more energetic and brash, and these dogs enjoy running, roaming, and playing in the yard.

This is a breed that needs regular interaction with human family members in order to thrive. Glen of Imaal Terriers that are left outside all day will quickly become bored, lonely, noisy, and destructive. To keep them healthy and happy, they must be involved in family activities and receive plenty of attention and affection.

These dogs don't usually bark without a reason, which means they are a good fit for apartment living. However, they tend to become combative when other dogs are near. Take them for walks on a leash or let them play in an enclosed yard; do not bring them to the dog park or expect cheerful interactions with other animals.

Glen of Imaal Terriers are typically healthy, but they are susceptible to a few genetic health problems that affect the eyes, such as rod-cone dystrophy and progressive retinal atrophy. These dogs are also more prone to itchy skin, allergies, and ear infections that some other breeds. Hip dysplasia is another concern common in Glen of Imaal Terriers.

One of the most important aspects of caring for Glen of Imaal Terriers is weight management. Because obesity can lead to cancer, heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, and other serious health conditions in dogs, it's essential to maintain a healthy weight in dogs of all breeds and ages. Low-calorie snacks, regular physical activity, and a well-balanced diet will all contribute to a healthy weight.

Glen of Imaal Terriers can live a full life of 12 to 15 years, provided they receive timely vaccinations, routine veterinary care, and proper nutrition throughout life.

To prevent behavioral problems in this breed, Glen of Imaal Terriers must begin training and socialization very early in life. Socialization should involve time around other animals and children and exposure to a variety of sights, sounds, smells, and places. This will help ensure these dogs remain friendly and tolerant throughout life. Of course, training and socialization are not substitutes for supervision, and no dog should be left alone with small children or animals without adequate supervision.

To improve success during training, a patient and consistent approach must be used. These dogs respond best to positive reinforcement, including praise, food, and play rewards, and they may shut down in the presence of harsh criticism or punishment.

Because of their strong prey drive and intense curiosity, Glen of Imaal Terriers should be kept inside a securely fenced yard when outside. During walks, it is important to keep this breed on a short leash.

Glen of Imaal Terriers are a fairly low-maintenance breed. Their coat should be brushed a couple times per week to prevent matting and tangles, and they need to be stripped every few months to maintain the health and appearance of their coat. Stripping can be done at home, following professional instruction, or by a groomer. Trimming of the hair around the ears, under the tail, and between the toes is also beneficial.

Bathing is rarely needed, and shedding is minimal. When bathing is necessary to control loose hair or to remove a toxic or sticky material from the coat, a gentle, pH-balanced canine shampoo will leave the coat shiny and fresh smelling without causing skin dryness or irritation. Bathing the Glen of Imaal Terrier's coat too often will soften their coarse hair.

The teeth need brushing regularly to prevent gum disease and tooth decay, and the nails need clipping every few weeks to control snagging and breaking. It's also important to examine the Glen of Imaal Terrier's ears weekly for signs of excess wax accumulation or infection. If redness, discharge, odor, or pain develops, a veterinarian should be consulted.

The Glen of Imaal Terrier was named for the remote Irish valley, located in the Wicklow Mountains, where it originated. These dogs were bred to hunt foxes, rats, and other small animals, and their small frame enabled them to reach into burrows and foxholes in pursuit of game. They were also used as turnspits to turn a spit over their owner's hearth.

These dogs were brought to America during the 1930s by immigrant families from Ireland. However, there was not much interest in the breed until the 1980s. Although this breed is still rare in the United States, it is beloved by all who know it. These friendly little dogs are cherished pets around the world.

In some parts of Ireland, the Glen of Imaal Terrier is still relied on as a ratter, although this is becoming increasingly less common.

The American Kennel Club officially recognized the Glen of Imaal Terrier in 2004.