The Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier dog breed is native to Ireland, specifically County Munster. It is thought to be one of Ireland’s oldest terriers, its mixed parentage being the result of deliberate breeding experiments dating back to before the 19th century. Its existence is attested by texts mentioning soft-coated dogs more than 200 years ago.
Its ancestors are thought to be as diverse as the black and tan, Irish and kerry blue terrier. Until the 20th century it was used as a working dog on farms. It guarded flocks, and hunted rats, rabbits, otters and badgers. In the 1930s it risked extinction, but thanks to careful selection the breed managed to survive.
To this day it is highly prized as a companion dog, although it is not well known outside County Kerry in Ireland, but in the United States, it is beginning to have some success as a companion dog.
Character of the Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier dog breed
The Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier does not possess the typical terrier temperament; it is neither quarrelsome nor short-tempered with its peers. As a companion dog it is exceptional for its peaceful and tolerant nature, always cheerful, gentle, faithful and affectionate. He needs a lot of physical and motor activity but does not disdain long sleeps on the couch. In fact, he also fits in very well in a flat, if, however, his needs for play and exercise are met. With the family, he sees himself as a full member.
He is not particularly a guard dog, but he does warn of danger, being very protective of his territory and his family unit. It is very fond of children, with whom it loves to play for long periods of time. It is also sociable with its own kind, even with specimens of the same sex.
It is a very sensitive dog and needs attention and not to be left alone for long periods of time. He is also loyal for life and has a long memory, never forgetting a friend or anyone who has wronged him. He must be trained from puppyhood and even if his upbringing is simple and calm, he needs an owner who is a leader and must not be allowed to handle situations himself. So he needs more than anything else consistency and commitment from the owner from the very first months. so that he understands what you want from him. Once understood, there will be no need to reiterate it.
With relatives and friends at home he is very affectionate, always happy with a visit and his cheerfulness is manifested by turning several times on himself, which he does when he is particularly happy. Even with strangers he is affectionate and playful. He never barks unless for a good reason.
Appearance of the Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier dog breed
The Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier is a medium-sized dog and belongs to the terrier family. The height at withers for a male is around 49 centimetres for a weight of 18 to 20 kilograms, the female specimens being shorter and lighter. It is a well-proportioned dog with excellent muscle mass. It is strong and powerful and at the same time agile. The hind limbs are well developed with strong thighs and powerful musculature. The legs are small and the tail, which is long, is not very thick.
The head is elongated, as is the muzzle, which is long and ends in a black truffle. The ears are not very large, fall forward and are folded. The eyes are generally hazel-brown, not too big nor protruding, but very expressive and intelligent.
The coat is fine and silky, wavy and in some cases curly. The Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier can have two coat types, the American and the Irish. The Irish is considered the breed standard, while the American variant is thicker and less wavy. On the limbs and muzzle it is longer. In the first two years of life, the coat undergoes several changes in colour and texture. The colour varies from reddish to grey to light wheat. As puppies, it may have black tones, but these disappear or lighten with growth. In Great Britain grooming is forbidden. The undercoat is very limited or almost non-existent.
Care and health of the Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier dog breed
The Irish soft-coated wheaten terrier is a healthy dog with few diseases attributable to the breed. It may suffer from hip dysplasia, intestinal enteritis and kidney problems. It is more susceptible to allergies than other dogs, so care must be taken with its diet due to its nutritional needs and possible allergic reactions to certain foods. Its life expectancy is around 15 years. With regard to diet, this must be balanced and controlled, as this breed tends to put on weight if it does not get enough exercise.
As for coat care, on the other hand, it is rather demanding. It should be brushed at least twice a week and should not be washed too often. It does not cause allergies because of its silky, silky coat. Its coat does not smell even when wet and it is a very clean dog.