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Rat Terrier

The Canine Chronicles Directory

Rat Terrier

The Rat Terrier is a muscular, active, small hunting terrier. The skull is slightly domed and tapers lightly towards the muzzle. The nose can be black or self-colored. The teeth are good-sized and meet in a scissor bite. The eyes are round, small and colors range from dark brown to amber. Lighter dogs may have hazel eyes and blue eyes are permitted in blue-colored dogs only. The v-shaped ears are set on the outside edges of the skull. They can be either erect, tipped, or button when the dog is alert. The neck is clean and moderately long and tapers slightly from the shoulders to the head. The feet are compact and slightly oval in shape. The tail is either docked or naturally bobbed. The coat is short, dense and smooth. The Rat Terrier may be solid white, bi-color or tri-color but must always have some white located somewhere on the coat. They are divided into two varieties for exhibition: miniature and standard. This breed is sturdy and resembles the Jack Russell Terrier.

Temperament The Rat Terrier is a powerful and intelligent dog. They are very loyal, loving and protective of their loved ones and possessions. This breed can be quite the comedian. They are not overly energetic and are quite calm at home. They are eager to please and get along well with children and other pets in the home. This alert breed makes a good watchdog. Whatever the Rat Terrier is raised with, it will love and protect.
Height, Weight Miniature Height: up to 13" ; Standard Height: 13-18"
Weight: 10-25 lbs.
Health Problems The Rat Terrier can be prone to allergies, hip and elbow dysplasia, luxating patellas and mange.
Living Conditions This breed would prefer to be inside with their family, but loves to run outdoors. They can live easily with either a sedentary owner or an active family in either an urban or rural environment.
Exercise The Rat Terrier needs daily exercise which can include a long daily walk.
Life Expectancy About 13-16 years
Grooming The coat of this breed is very low maintenance. Brush every once in a while. Check the ears, nails and teeth often.
Origin The Rat Terrier originated in England and is thought to have been crossed with the Smooth Fox Terrier, the Manchester Terrier and the now extinct white English Terrier. These dogs were bred as ratters and excel at this task. The all-time record for the most rats killed by this breed is 2,501 in a seven hour period in a barn. President Theodore Roosevelt brought them to the White House in 1890 for pest control as well as for their companionship and their hunting abilities. Once in the U.S., they were bred with the Whippet, which added speed, and the Beagle, which added their extensive trailing ability and bulk. The Chihuahua was added to create the miniature version. They are recognized by the FCI and the UKC, and have been accepted for recording in the AKC Foundation Stock Service®.
Group Terrier