The Smooth Fox Terrier shows a typical perky terrier expression.
Fox Terrier or Foxy refers primarily to two different
Smooth Fox Terrier and the
Wire Fox Terrier, that were independently bred in
century. The two
breeds are very similar, with the only major difference being the coats. The
Smooth Fox Terrier has a smooth, flat, but hard and dense coat, whereas the Wire
Fox Terrier coat should appear broken with a dense, wiry texture.
circles, the terms fox terrier and foxy are only used for these
two breeds, but in other communities around the world, particularly
these words are used for these breeds and also to refer to mixed-breed dogs of
fox terrier type, or to descendent breeds such as the
Toy Fox Terrier and
Miniature Fox Terrier, which are similar to each other.
Wire-haired Fox Terrier
The breeds were established to assist in
hunting. Before their development, a hunt would be ruined as soon as the
fox reached its hole.
The introduction of Fox Terriers into the hunting party solved the problem. If
the fox "went to ground" (reached and entered its lair), the terrier would be
sent in after it. This identified the major requirements for a Fox Terrier.
Firstly, it had to have the stamina to run with the
Secondly, it had to be small enough to follow a fox down its lair. And thirdly,
it had to be tough, as a cornered fox was likely to turn and try to fight off an
intruder, so a foxy had to be able to stand up to it.
The term Fox Terrier was generic until the latter part of the 19th
Century. It referred to a group of dogs of varying type which were bred for the
hunt. These dogs were often called "foxies" regardless of type or size. The
first Fox Terrier, a dog called "Foiler" or "Old Foiler", was registered by the
Kennel Club circa 1875-6, and the breed began the process of standardization.
Refinement of breed types led to the assignment of new breed names to the
ensuing breeds. A differentiation was made between the Fox Terrier varieties,
although the two breeds were shown under the same
breed standard until well into the 20th century. The process of
selective breeding was duplicated in other countries as emigrants took their
dogs to other parts of the world.
Development of the Fox Terrier around the world
United States, fanciers of the
Jack Russell Terrier were adamant that their dog, of a type created by
The Reverend Mr. John Russell, “The Sporting Parson”, was as much of a fox
terrier as the smooth or wirehaired varieties. They referred to those breeds as
the Modern Fox Terriers. Some Jack Russell owners preferred that their breed
clubs remain unaffiliated, to preserve the working qualities of their fox
Toy Fox Terrier was developed by selected breeding from smaller Fox
Terriers. The breed was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1936 and
generated little controversy.
Australia, a distinct type of Australian Fox Terrier was becoming
recognizable during the same period in which the fox terrier breed was being
miniature version of this new dog became extremely popular. Smooth and
Wirehair Fox Terriers are often referred to as Standard Fox Terriers in
Australia in an attempt to minimize confusion.
Today, there are many and varied breeds that are descended from or related to
earlier fox terrier types. These include the
The Smooth and Wirehair Fox Terriers are seldom used for hunting these days
and are more often pets. Their small size makes them appealing.
Famous Fox Terriers
- Asta, from
- Milou (Snowy), companion of
- Bunny, from
- Polly, a white rough terrier companion to
mascot of HMV and
commericals featured him portrayed as a fox terrier, though the original one
was a mixed-breed.
- Snitter, protagonist from the novel
The Plague Dogs, written by
- Titina, travelled with
Umberto Nobile on
Airship Norge and
- The Fox Terriers. AKC Featured Breed article. Refer to archives.
| Field Spaniel
| Fila Brasileiro
| Finnish Lapphund
| Finnish Spitz
| Flat-Coated Retriever
| Fox Terrier
| Fox Terrier (Smooth)
| Fox Terrier (Wire)
| Francais Blanc et Noir
| French Bulldog
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