This lively, spirited dog breed is a true terrier. Bred in Manchester, England, for the common man’s sports of rat killing and rabbit coursing, he’s got game and he loves to show it. The Gentleman’s Terrier (as he is known in Victorian England) is not a sparring dog but loves a good chase, making him a flyball and agility rock star.
Illustration courtesy of the Swedish Kennel Club
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Frustration with ear shape caused Manchester breeders to slow and eventually stop breeding altogether but for a few staunch devotees who continued to keep the breed alive.
The Manchester Terrier is a high-spirited, very intelligent, and cunning dog who is eager to learn. He displays the true terrier nature — independent, faithful, lively, sporty, and alert. Discerning and devoted as well, a Manchester Terrier makes a loyal friend and a terrific watchdog.
Manchester Terriers are extremely loyal to their people. They crave notice without being overly demanding. Because they’re utterly devoted to companionship, Manchesters don’t do well if left alone for long periods of time. They can become bored and nervous in those situations, which could lead to destructive behavior, like digging holes. A vocal breed to begin with, they may also bark excessively if left to amuse themselves.
Exercise is your best prevention tool — the more they get, the less trouble they’ll be. Note: If you have issues with your pet bringing you dead and potentially un-whole small critters, you may want to consider another breed. Manchesters don’t have a cat’s philosophy, so these are not love gifts from an admirer — dead critters are the spoils of war and go to the warrior who brought them down.
Like many terriers, Manchesters have a lot of energy. They want to please and are quick learners. They are sensitive dogs, though, and can get snappy when they want to be left alone. This trait makes them unsuitable for families with small children unless the adults are willing to socialize and train their Manchester on a consistent basis.
Because of their short coats, they should not be left outdoors. When it is hot outside, their black coats could cause them to become overheated, and when it is cold outside, they can get very chilled. They do best when allowed to stay indoors with their families.
Toy Manchester Terriers on Embark
Explore some Embark dogs that share Manchester Terrier (Toy) ancestry.