The Airedale Terrier Breed Standard

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What is the expected behaviour of the breed?

First and foremost the Airedale is a TERRIER. It is the King of the terriers and as such it is expected to be on the tip toe of expectation and have all of the terrier characteristics, however, due to the hound influence in it's make up there is also a more relaxed side to the breed. An Airedale Terrier will romp and play and be full on for a while and then be a real couch potato. They are far less excitable than the smaller terriers. We expect our Airedales to be placid unless there is a good reason otherwise, we expect them to be a valuable member of the family and we also expect them to be a bit of a clown. 

What is their trainability like are they easy to train?
Airedales have been used over the years in so many areas. They were used extensively as messengers during WW1, as Police dogs, as Guide dogs, as Watch/Protection dogs and as Therapy dogs, so their trainability must be good. They are not really hard to train in the right hands but they are independent thinkers and will not do something just because they are told to. They need to see a reason for doing so and they do not as a rule respond well to heavy handed tactics. Get your Airedale to work with you and you will have a dog that will do whatever you ask of it. However, don't expect an Airedale to react like a working dog and look as though it is enjoying it. They will plod rather than explode with enthusiasm.

What are their activity levels and how do you provide for this? (e.g. exercise, enrichment, toys and games).

Airedale Terriers will have high activity levels for short periods of time and then relax and chill out but will re energize if and when necessary. A bored Airedale can be a very destructive Airedale and thus needs to be occupied by training, playing or even just being with you. They love company but as a rule are happy to spend time alone if required but as a trade off need quality attention after a spell alone. A period of 30 minutes a day walking should be adequate but more is good for older dogs. Young (to about 12-18 months) dogs should not be exercised strenuously.

What are the grooming requirements for a pet?
The Airedale should, at the very least be combed right through to the skin with a steel toothed comb at least once a week. A pet can be clipped two to three times per year using a #10 blade. Between major clips the owner needs to cut the hair between the pads on the feet and tidy up around the genital and anus areas. Also it is good to trim along the side of the mouth to prevent drool and matts forming.

What and how much do you feed your dog?
My adult dogs are fed a combination of kibble and raw. An adult male gets 1/2 cup of dry food and about 350 g of raw chicken, beef, kangaroo or other mince. Alternatively he will get chicken frames, necks or wings, lamb necks, turkey drumsticks. I also feed canned mackerel when I forget to take meat out of the freezer and added to this is cottage cheese or an egg and minced up raw vegetables.

Contact Details

Sue Henderson
Email: [email protected]