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Patterdale Terrier

Patterdale Terrier

The Patterdale Terrier originates from...

Hailing from the difficult terrain of England's Lake District, the Patterdale Terrier derives its name from Patterdale in Cumbria, where it was once shown. One of the native Terrier breeds that is unrecognized by kennel clubs and not reduced by their standards, the Patterdale is rarely observed outside Great Britain where it has enjoyed considerable popularity in farming circles. Primarily bred as a fox, rabbit and vermin hunter, bolting and killing its quarry, the modern Patterdale is often utilised in guarding flocks from foxes and other predators, whilst being a versatile working dog about the farmstead. First developed by Brian Nuttall in the early 1960s, the Patterdale Terrier descends from various Northern Terrier breeds seen in the early 20th century.

The Patterdale Terrier is characterised by...

A rustic-looking dog boasting short, straight legs, a defined and tapering muzzle, triangular 'drop' ears and a tail that is traditionally docked. The coat is typically smooth or rough, and commonly coloured black with white markings on the chest and feet. Other colours observed in the breed include grizzle, chocolate, black and tan, bronze, liver and red and tan. Retaining its strong hunt drive, the Patterdale is inclined to chase smaller animals, usually killing them in the process, so early training against this is imperative. The breed's compact and athletic build made it capable of maneuvering into tight spaces to delve out den quarry.

The average Patterdale...

Highly energetic and intelligent, the breed requires both physical and mental stimulation in order to discourage destructive behaviours around the home. The Patterdale Terrier is characteristically less yappy than its cousins, making for a peaceful companion dog. It is not uncommon for a Patterdale Terrier to display signs of stubbornness or aggression so early socialisation and firm leadership is important. Otherwise, a Patterdale Terrier is typically cool, calm and collected, making a great addition to active family life. A healthy Patterdale Terrier will weigh 5-6 kg, with a life expectancy of 10-12 years when shown the appropriate love and care.

Because no breed is without its weakness...

Eye disorders are prevalent in the breed, ranging from mild to more serious. These include conjunctivitis, cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy and glaucoma, although the Patterdale is otherwise healthy and long-lived.

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Our Patterdale Terrier owners' thoughts

21st Mar 2015

Tess is my 2nd Patterdale terrier,she is very loving and formed a quick bond with me, she was one year when I got her from someone who could no longer give her the time she needed. When we brought her home she seemed to get on with our Welshboy but once he realised he wasnt going to be top dog the fights broke out,the welsh had 3 visits to the vet, after a while of constant watchfulness and feeding in separate rooms we seemed to have some harmony, but the Patterdale rules they still have fisticuffs over stupid things, like when someone comes to the door and both start barking then they have a little battle, anyone watching would think they were both vicious but its just their way now its not as intense and soon over and done with then they are best pals lying by the fire and grooming each other, Patterdales are loving but are very feisty and need a firm hand but they are also very intelligent and I found Tess to be very obedient although my old Patterdale boy knew what you wanted but would do things in his own time.Tess never bothers much with dogs outside a quick sniff and if the other dogs ok so is Tess but if they charge her and get in her face or growl then its pull her in quick and cross the road.

26th Nov 2016
Jane Harrison
  • VioVet Customer Since: August 2015
  • From: West Midlands, United Kingdom

Jasper is my first Patti, I'd never heard of the breed until I got him. He was a stray that I took on 3 years ago. He was found in the middle of a busy dual carriageway but because it was Easter bank holiday the dogwarden wouldn't come out. I left him my details & agreed I'd have him over the weekend. No one claimed him so 3 years on he's still with me & definitely a big part of our family. Like all terriers he's feisty, wilful and full of energy. He's also incredibly loyal & very vocal. He likes to talk, a lot! He's not good with other dogs, if they get boisterous he'll snap & put them in their place, hence I usually cross the road when I see an approaching dog. He does however get on with my sister's dog, who being a beagle is daft as a brush & very laid back & is happy with Jasp being top dog. Patterdales are hunting dogs, they will chase (& probably kill) anything small & furry so beware!

8th Dec 2017
Clare B

I have a 6 year old Patterdale Jess who I've had for almost 2 years - she was used for breeding and didn't have a good quality of life before, being kept in a shed. She is an absolutely wonderful dog - so loving and affectionate - she's great with other dogs and people, she is obedient - she is a real bobby dazzler of a dog! I have a 10 year old Jack Russell I've had as a pup and he has not been great with dogs but since I got her he has grown so much in confidence, it's all down to Jess. She's a dedicated hunter though and is independent on walks unlike my JRT - she would happily 'meet you back at the car' after hours of hunting if she had her way, so it's long leads except at the beach. She could not be trusted around any small animals, including cats. A very tough dog with a loving and sweet personality - you can see how they became the farmer's favourite!

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