English Toy Terrier

English Toy Terrier Breed description: Character & Co

English Toy Terrier

Life expectancy
13 - 15

English Toy Terrier: Origin, History & Suitability

The English Toy Terrier, also known as the Black and Tan Terrier, has its roots in historic England. In the 16th century, these dogs were first mentioned in literature and art. Its main role was to keep homes and barns free of rodents. Over time, the English Toy Terrier found its way into the living rooms of the nobility and became a valued companion dog.

In the 19th century, the English Toy Terrier became a favorite in British show rings thanks to its elegance and fine appearance. Despite its small frame, it was highly prized for its speed and determination, especially in the so-called "rat-killing contests" where it chased rodents against the clock.


Despite his past as a working dog, the English Toy Terrier has evolved primarily into a companion dog. With his sensitive and loving nature, he is perfect as a pet for individuals and families. Some key characteristics of its suitability are:

  • Adaptable: he does well in both apartments and houses with gardens.
  • Child-friendly: with proper socialization, he is affectionate and patient with children.
  • Socializing: He appreciates the company of his humans and should not be left alone for extended periods of time.


The English Toy Terrier is a small but courageous dog with a rich history that ranges from rat hunting to the show stage. Today, he is best known as a loving and loyal companion that adapts beautifully to modern life. His adaptability and friendly nature make him an ideal choice for many households.

Banner: Depositphotos / chrisbrignell
Typical English Toy Terrier in spring garden English Toy Terrier dog isolated on a white background
Alternate Name English Toy Terrier
Origin England
Life expectancy 13 - 15 years
Care requirements low-maintenance
Activity level average
FCI group Toy Terriers
AKC group not recognised
KC group not recognised

Lively & Intelligent

The English Toy Terrier is often described as lively and quick-tempered. This little dog has a remarkable intelligence that is evident in both his quick learning and curiosity. At times, this combination of energy and intelligence can make him a bit of a prankster, but that only adds to his charm.

Loyal & Devoted

One of the standout characteristics of the English Toy Terrier is his deep bond with his family. He tends to be especially affectionate towards one person, but is also loving and loyal towards other family members. His loyalty and affection make him a wonderful companion.

Alert & Courageous

Despite his small stature, the English Toy Terrier is an excellent watchdog. He is alert and attentive and will not hesitate to bark if he notices anything out of the ordinary. His courageous nature allows him to stand firm despite his size.

With other animals

It is recommended that the English Toy Terrier be introduced to other pets at an early age. Although he usually gets along well with dogs of the same size, his terrier-like hunting behavior can sometimes conflict with smaller pets.


The English Toy Terrier combines many desirable traits into one small package. From his loyalty and intelligence to his alertness and energy, he is a versatile and lovable companion. With proper training and socialization, he will become an invaluable member of any family.


Care of the silky coat

The coat of the English Toy Terrier is short, dense and shiny. It is recommended to brush it regularly, at least once a week, to remove dead hair and maintain its natural shine. Due to his short coat, he is considered relatively low maintenance. If necessary, he should be bathed, especially if he spends time in dirty environments.

Health Monitoring

Like all breeds, the English Toy Terrier can have certain health problems. Occasional health problems include patellar luxation and eye problems. Regular vet visits and exams can detect and treat problems early. A balanced diet and regular exercise contribute to the health and longevity of the breed.

Breeding Information

Breeding the English Toy Terrier should be done responsibly and ethically. When selecting breeding pairs, special attention should be paid to the health and character of the parents. It is recommended that genetic testing be performed prior to breeding to rule out known health problems in the breed. Puppies should be raised in a safe, clean and loving environment to ensure that they are both physically and mentally healthy.

In summary, with proper care and attention, the English Toy Terrier can be a long, healthy and happy companion. It is important to be aware of the specific needs and characteristics of the breed to provide him with the best quality of life possible.

english toy terrier standing

The English Toy Terrier is known for its shiny, fine and short coat. This dense coat hugs the body closely and provides a smooth surface. The most distinctive feature is the black and tan coloring. Here, the black is deep and rich, while the tan markings are clearly delineated and located in specific areas: above the eyes, on the cheeks, on the insides of the ears and legs, and under the tail.


The English Toy Terrier is characterized by an elegant yet athletic appearance. It has a slender silhouette with a wedge-shaped head, large erect ears and dark, bright eyes that exude intelligence and curiosity. The body is compact but well proportioned, giving it both strength and grace.

Size & Weight

  • Height: Adult English Toy Terriers reach a shoulder height of 25 to 30 inches.
  • Weight: A healthy weight is between 2.7 and 3.6 kg.


The English Toy Terrier impresses with its elegant appearance and distinctive black and tan coat coloration. Its size and weight make it an ideal companion for people looking for a small but active dog. Despite his compact dimensions, he radiates energy and liveliness, coupled with an unmistakable grace.

Fur length short
Fur flat coated
Ear shape Standing Ears
Tail lang
Anatomy dainty
Size ♀ 25 - 30 cm
Weight ♀ 3 - 4 kg
Size ♂ 25 - 30 cm
Weight ♂ 3 - 4 kg
Suitable For Beginner, Children, Seniors
  • Eye diseases

    Often occur with allergies and intolerances.

  • Patellar luxation

    Patellar luxation is the term used to describe a displacement of the kneecap, which is one of the most common causes of lameness in dogs.

Other medium dogs

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