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Bedlington Terrier Breed Summary

Affectionate, Intelligent, Well-tempered, Happy and Loyal

These dogs are often described as looking like lambs, however, in nature, they are more well-known for making excellent companions and shining in the show ring! They are one of the oldest pedigree terriers in the world and are a popular choice for family pets.

Bedlington Terriers love to be outside and always need to have a job to do, which makes sense seeing as they were bred to be highly skilled hunters! They are however highly adaptable and are more than happy to live in a variety of places.

Fun Fact: These dogs used to travel with Gypsies during the 17th century!

Kennel Club Group Terrier
Lifespan 12 - 14 Years
Height (at the withers) Males 41cm - 44 cm, Females 38cm - 42cm
Weight Males and Females 7.5kg – 10.5kg
Coat Linty and Thick, standing well off from a dog's body.
Colour Blue, Blue & Tan, Liver, Liver & Tan, Sandy, Sandy & Tan
Eye colour Darker and Lighter Coloured Eyes, in Amber or Light Hazel.
Common health issues Copper toxicosis, Cushing’s disease, Reproductive issues, Heart murmur, Retinal Dysplasia, Entropion (Eyelids Folding Inwards), Distichiasis, Blocked Tear Ducts, Dry Eye, Primary lens luxation (PLL), Hyperkeratosis
Other Names Rothbury Terrier, Rodbery Terrier, Rothbury's Lamb

These dogs love to be the centre of their ‘hoomans’ world and make fantastic companion dogs. That said, they do not get on well with other animals, particularly dogs of the opposite sex and will often chase after small mammals as well. So, if you have rabbits or hamsters, these dogs may be a bit of a no-no. They are very energetic and will need plenty of walkies throughout the day as well as other physical activities that they can join in with. For this reason, they may suit a more active family. Their temperaments do vary from puppy to puppy, depending on how they have been bought up. The ones with better temperaments will be playful and approach you, whereas others may sit in the corner or bully their siblings. With the correct amount of socialisation and training, they do make fantastic pets!

The origins of the Bedlington Terrier are a mystery to all but it has been theorised that they initially travelled with Gypsies and were used to poach game on the estates they passed. News spread quickly on the breeds talented ability to kill vermin and they gained popularity with local landowners, who acquired them for themselves. At this stage, they didn’t have a breed name, and it wasn’t until 1825, when Joseph Ainsley of Bedlington obtained one, that the name stuck! It’s also thought that these doggies may have been cross with Whippets at this time in order to increase their speed. They were eventually registered as a breed in 1886 by the Kennel Club and are fairly rare, ranking 128th out of 155 breeds!