Life span: 10-13 Years
Height: 58-61cm(Male); 56-59cm(Female)
Weight: 40-65 pounds
The Airedale Terrier is a strong and smart dog with a tall appearance and a seemingly perfect posture. With origins in the United Kingdom, he excels at being the perfect company and at hunting. Although a friendly dog for families, he does not do well with other dogs, if familiarized with them properly it should be no problem, but as long as they are strange he might perceive them as a threat and engage in fights.
The Airedale Terrier is the biggest of the terriers, with a well proportioned and strong body. Its fur has two coats, the top one hard and wiry and the one underneath which is softer and shorter. The fur is always divided in two colors, the black part (which can also be grey) goes from their neck to their tales, and the rest is a tan brown color. This breed has a strong jaw set and small ears, along with a tail that isn’t too long and remains straight. The tail is usually cut but this tradition is being left behind due to its cruelty.
Originally named a Bingley Terrier, the Airedale Terrier has its origins in the United Kingdom. In 1853, the first attempt at creating this terrier takes place, with the purpose of a hunter for otters and rats, being able to hunt in both water and land. Although already a popular sporting dog, this breed became most popular when in 1864, in the first Aire Valley dog show, Hugh Dalziel described the dog as “an exceedingly good one”. At this time the Airedale Terrier acquired its current name, even though it was not accepted as such until 1886, when it became the official name for this breed. They were used as messengers and carriers during World War I but since 1949 its popularity has dropped, since the German Shepard’s has increased by occupying its roles.
This breed is a very good watch dog as it is very protective of its family. Due to its size, it is recommended to be careful when around young children. However, it would never intentionally harm them. This is a very active dog with need of constant varied exercise, repetitive ones will result in them getting bored and can lead to a destructive attitude. It responds to treats and praise well, but it is a very independent dog and needs a lot of socialization, since it tends to perceive other strange dogs as threats. The more it is taken out to meet other dogs and people, the better attitude it will have towards them when grown.
This breed is a very healthy one, however, it can develop certain diseases, some of which are:
Allergies that produce the same symptoms you see in humans, and depending on the cause, different treatments can be used.
Hip dysplasia, a hereditary disease in which there is an abnormal formation in the hip socket, that may eventually cause painful arthritis. It may also be affected by the environment they reside in.
Hypothyroidism, a disease that affects the thyroid gland, its symptoms are ear infections, skin infections, hair loss, lethargy, and depression.
Cancer, noticeable through unusually swollen bumps, bleeding from any orifices, or sores that do not heal, along with difficulty breathing.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), in which the dogs may become night blind at first and progressively lose their day eyesight as well.
Von Willebrand’s Disease, which is a blood disease that affects the clotting process, its symptoms can be nosebleeds, prolonged bleeding from surgery, occasional blood in stools, etc.
Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis, causes vomiting and diarrhea with fresh blood and needs immediate treatment or can result in another disease, which can result in death.
Umbilical Hernia, is present since birth and causes the internal organs or abdominal fat to be pushed against the abdominal wall near the umbilicus. If small, can be left untreated, but if it is large it must be treated with surgery to prevent a deadly disease.
The Airedale Terrier needs regular and varied exercise to keep it healthy and to keep it from getting a destructive behavior, which it will acquire if bored by either lack of exercise or repetitive exercises. It also needs a lot of socialization, especially when young, in order to become an adult with good attitude, even though it is naturally good with children, it tends to see other dogs as threats.
In order to keep its fur in good condition, this breed needs to be bathed regularly and have its fur cleaned completely at least three times a year, in order to get rid of all the dead hair it can accumulate. When cleaning its fur, it can never be while dry, applying first some water and/or a special treatment for its fur.