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Norfolk Terrier


Life span: 12-15 Years

Height: 9 – 10 inches

Weight: 11 – 13 lbs.

The Norfolk Terrier, which became officially recognized in 1964, is among the smallest of the terrier breeds. With its “drop-ears” and yearning eyes, the Norfolk is a truly adorable breed. And while the breed may have a cute appearance, it is also a very hard worker in the field. It has been said that the Norfolk has a seemingly endless amount of energy.

This loving breed is affectionate with its family. They get along well with children and other household pets, but will chase small wild animals. They are jealous and might cause trouble if bored.

Physical Characteristics

Their ears are small and fold down, with a small tail that remains erect. The eyes are brown with a black nose. Their double coat is made up of a soft and sparse undercoat, and a short and wiry overcoat that is rough to the touch. Coat colors include black, red, brown and light brown.


This breed’s ancestors, the Norwich Terrier, originated in England’s East Anglia and was crossbred with multiple other Terriers. This resulted in small dogs that were named the Trumpington Terriers. At the beginning, they were all fairly different, not only in body size but also in coat colors and ear shapes. However, later on a standard was set, and two types of ear shapes were included: drop eared and prick eared. This led to breeders not crossing those dogs who had different ears in 1930. During World War II, drop eared types were nearly extinct, but were saved by Miss Macfie, ultimately leading to the breeders resorting to her for help to keep the breed going. It was in 1964 that the two types were separated into two breeds by the Kennel Club in England, and in 1979 the American Kennel Club followed suit. The Norfolk Terrier are the drop eared type.


This loving dog is not only a fan of its family, but also of work. They enjoy having something to do, and are very jealous of their family. They get along well with children and other household pets, and are never aggressive. However, they tend to misbehave when they want to call your attention, often digging holes in your backyard or barking non stop. When exercising, never take them out without a leash, and if in an enclosed area outdoors, always watch them since they like to hunt small animals such as rabbits or squirrels.


Although generally healthy, this breed may suffer from:

  • 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.
  • Luxating Patella- in which the kneecaps may dislocate or move from its proper place.
  • Vaccination Sensitivity- which, as the name suggests, is a high sensitivity towards vaccinations that can result in swelling from the face, or other symptoms that may seem like allergies, even during routine vaccinations.


This breed needs to be regularly hand stripped in order to prevent matting. Their nails should be trimmed regularly, as well as their teeth brushed and ears checked for any dirt to prevent infections. They are active dogs, and therefore need daily exercise, preferably through long walks and playtime. Training might be difficult, given that they attempt to be the pack leader. Obedience training is a must, as well as early socialization.



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