Origin: United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
Dog Breed Group: Hunting Dog
Life Span: 12-15 years
Weight: Male:6-7, Female: 5-6
Height: Male: 13-15, Female: 12-14
Origin of Name: The Border Terrier is British breed of small, rough-coated terrier.
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In the hilly areas near the Scottish-English border, old-time farmers and shepherds developed quick, agile terrain to help chase and dispatch a clever, sheep-stealing hunter: the big, powerful mountain fox. It is the essential game terriers with legs large enough to walk with foxes and hunters on horseback. But they had to be small enough to dig into the fox's dugout and force it out into the open.
These dogs, the ancestors of today's border terriers, were energetic, strong and tireless, with a wavy, weatherproof coat to protect them from the rain, mist and infamous terrain of the border. Here, a breed historian describes the workability of the border: "There is no wall that he cannot hold or wire to tangle through which he cannot scramble. Should the fox run to the earth, He will provoke him every time, or he will remain on earth until the matter is resolved.
Early breed names included the Readwater Terrier, the Ulvewater Terrier, and the Coquadale Terrier, all derived from place names in the north of England where these rugged little dogs carried on their trade. However, it was in Northumberland, the northernmost county in England, where the breed earned its enduring reputation as a fox-stable when working in conjunction with foxes. (And to this day, Border is known as a terrier, who recovers with his fellow canine.)
Foxhunting along the border terrier in the North Country was distinct from the patriotism of traditional British foxes on lavish rustic terrains, with well-heeled horsemen in red coats and huge packs of foxes in high caps.
Border foxes were operating with a practical purpose: to protect herds of predators from predators. And to this day, border terriers remain a popular choice in the United Kingdom for just plain people looking for an enthusiastic, low-maintenance companion.
The Kennel Club (England) recognized the Border Terrier in 1920, and AKC followed suit 10 years later.