Border Terrier Dog Breed: Characteristic, Health & Fun Facts!

The attentive, amiable Border Terrier was primarily trained to help with foxhunts by luring foxes from their hidden spots and into the outdoors so the hounds could chase them. They, therefore, make wonderful family members who enjoy their human parents.

Border Terriers still possess the same amount of energy and a strong instinct for hunting and digging that allowed them to stay updated with hunters riding horses.

Some people may find them to be frustrating pets due to these characteristics, but for others, Border Terriers make fantastic partners who romp and love even more vigorously. If they exercise frequently, they can adjust to apartment living.

Border Terrier Dog Breed

About The Breed

The Border Terrier is a little dog with a watchful expression, a strong want to hunt and dig, typical high terrier energy, and a kind disposition. As annoying as a dog can be, he is bright, obedient, brave, affectionate, and determined.

After that introduction, you might be tempted to immediately press the back button to look for a new breed, and you might even want to do so.

The Border Terrier is not for everyone, so make sure that you are completely prepared to put up with his antics while shaking your head in amusement before bringing one home.

Border Terrier Dog Breed History

Around the eighteenth century, the Border Terrier was developed in northeast England, close to the Scottish border. He is the outcome of the ongoing conflict between foxes and farmers.

To fit into small spaces and lure foxes out from concealment, borders were designed with long, slender, flexible bodies and limbs that could keep up with the horses during every fox hunt.

 Simply put, they had plenty of energy, a weatherproof coat, and soft, fibrous flesh that was impervious to piercing by the jaws of their fox enemies. A 1754 picture of two Border Terriers by Arthur Wentworth serves as early documentation of the species.

Border Terrier Dog Breed Job Card/Overview

Breed Name Border Terrier
Dog Breed TypeTerrier Dogs
OriginNortheast England
Parent BreedsHas a common ancestor with the Bedlington Terrier as well as the Dandie Dinmont Terrier.
Height10 to 11 inches tall
Weight 11 to 15 pounds
Life Expectancy12 to 15 years.
Coat TypePrickly overcoat over a small, thick undercoat.
Common ColorsRed, blue, and tan, grizzle and tan
Grooming NeedsMinimal Grooming Needs
Temperamentwell-mannered, loving, obedient, and trainable
Apartment Livingideal for Apartment living.
Pet FriendlyYes
Exercise RequirementsAverage
Tendency to Droollow tendency 
Intelligence LevelQuite Intelligent
Energy LevelHigh
What To Know
• Border Terriers are happy and like being around people. They make awesome family pets because they’re smart and playful.

• These dogs have shaggy hair that needs brushing to stay neat. Sometimes, pros might need to give them a trim to keep them looking cool.

• Border Terriers have lots of energy. They love going for walks and playing outside. Regular exercise is a must to keep them happy.

• These pups are clever but can be a bit independent. Training them with kindness and being consistent works best. Early lessons and good behavior rewards make them awesome pals.

• Watch out for common health stuff, like hip problems and allergies. Regular vet visits and good food help keep them healthy.


Border Terrier Dog Breed


Border Terriers are quick learners and fit into various lifestyles. They adapt well to different environments, whether it’s a bustling city or a quiet countryside. These dogs enjoy both playtime and training, making them versatile companions.

With their easygoing nature, Border Terriers effortlessly adjust to their owner’s preferences, becoming adaptable and loyal friends in any situation.


Adaptive to Apartment Living

Suitable for New Owners

Sensitivity Scale

Comfortable Being Alone

Comfortable with Cold Weather

Comfortable with Hot Weather


The Border Terrier is a brilliant-pleasant pal! Always up for a laugh and cuddles, this little furball is a real joy to have around. Its glad-pass-lucky mindset and pleasant nature make it a super companion for households and individuals alike.

Whether it is playtime or relaxation, the Border Terrier is properly there with you, wagging its tail and spreading suitable vibes.

All About Friendliness

Lovable with Family



Frank with strangers


Given that they are terriers, Border Collies tend to be well-mannered, loving, obedient, and trainable. Due to their great intelligence, they rapidly pick up on signs like now it’s time to eat, head to the workplace, or go outdoors for a stroll. They also quickly understand what you prefer and detest when it comes to chewing.

When it comes to other little creatures, they are less friendly. They are brave and unrelenting when it comes to pursuing a game.

Border Terriers need initial socialization, or being exposed to a variety of people, sights, noises, and experiences, while they are young, much like all other dogs. To guarantee that your Border Terrier puppy develops into a well-rounded dog, socialization is important.


They’re full of energy and like to play a lot. These dogs are clever and determined, always up for a good time. They can be affectionate and enjoy being around people. It’s important to keep them busy and give them things to do.

They make loyal friends and can adapt to different places. Even though they’re small, they have a big personality and love to explore.

Friendly with kids

Border Terriers are usually really nice with kids. They like to play and can be patient, but it’s important for grown-ups to make sure everyone gets along and understands each other’s rules.

Amicable to other pets

These dogs usually get along fine with other pets in the house. If introduced properly and early, they can be friends with other animals. Just keep an eye on them at first to make sure everyone is comfortable.

Barking tendencies

Border Terriers might bark a bit. It’s not too much, but it’s good to know. Training them when to be quiet and keeping them busy with toys can help keep the noise down.

Possibilities of Staying Alone

These dogs can handle being alone for a while. They like company, but with some toys and a comfy place, they usually do okay when no one’s around. Just be sure to ease them into it and not leave them alone for too long.

Pros and Cons of the Border Terrier Dog Breed


  • Border Terriers are known for their friendly and playful demeanor, making them great companions.
  • They often get along well with children, forming strong bonds and displaying patience.
  • These dogs are generally amicable towards other pets, making them suitable for multi-pet households.


  • Border Terriers may have a tendency to bark, requiring training and attention to manage.
  • While adaptable, their independent nature means they may need proper training for alone time.
  • Their wiry coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting and maintain overall health.

Male vs Female Attitude

Male Border Terriers might be a bit more confident and independent, while females tend to be adaptable and nurturing. It’s not a strict rule, though.

Some males can be cuddly, and some females can be independent. Each dog is different, and their attitude is shaped by how they’re treated and trained. With love and care, both male and female Border Terriers can make awesome pets.

Border Terrier Dog Breed


Border Terriers are small, tough dogs with wiry coats in different colors. They have a lively expression with dark eyes and pointy ears that stand up.

Their tails are short and look like an otter’s. Overall, they’re muscular and compact, built for agility. These dogs are friendly and spirited, showing their energetic nature in their appearance.

Coat Color And Grooming

The Border Terrier has a prickly overcoat over a small, thick undercoat. The epidermis is bulky and floppy, which helps keep him safe from attacks during the fox-hunting time.

Red, blue and tan, grizzle and tan, wheaten, or other colors are all possible for Border Terriers. Some have a little white spot on their breast.

Your Border will appear nice and clean if you brush them once a week and periodically remove their tough terrier coat (once every 5 to 6 months).


Border Terriers shed periodically, usually during spring and fall. Regular brushing with a slicker brush helps control loose fur and prevents tangling.

Gentle hand-pulling of dead hairs can maintain their coat’s texture. Though they’re not heavy shedders, routine grooming is important for a neat and healthy appearance.


The Border Terrier is made to be both large and small, allowing it to catch pace with hunters riding horses. Females weigh 11.5 to 14 lbs, but males weigh 13 to 15.5 lbs. They are 10–11 inches tall.


Although they are not typical in the breed, the following issues might arise:

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Heart defects
  • Malocclusions
  • Seizures
  • Patellar Luxation

Health test

Health TestPurpose
Hip DysplasiaAssess hip joint health
Eye ExaminationCheck for vision issues
Patellar LuxationEvaluate knee joint stability
DNA Tests (Genetic Disorders)Identify inherited conditions
Cardiac EvaluationAssess heart health
Thyroid Function TestsMonitor thyroid gland function
Canine EpilepsyDetect signs of epilepsy
Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)Screen for a degenerative eye disease
Allergies ScreeningIdentify potential allergies
Dental Check-upEnsure oral health
Blood TestsGeneral health assessment

Health and Grooming Requirements

Shedding Quantity

Drooling Capability

Effortless to Groom

Overall Health

Capable of Gaining Weight


Maintenance and Care

Despite the fact they love getting access to a yard, Border Terriers ideally remain indoors with their owners rather than chained up in the backyard. Always be completely sure that the fence is strong and tall since these dogs are skilled getaway artists.

The true difficulties arise with more advanced instruction. Since they have to operate apart from their masters while fox-hunts, Border Terriers were bred to be autonomous; despite their ability to accept an order when given, this characteristic is still prominent in the species, and they will choose when to do so.

Food and Nutrition

One and a half to one and a third cups of premium dog food each day, split into two meals, is advised. Instead of putting food out all the time, make sure your Border Terrier gets two meals a day by weighing out his food.

Food Cost

The monthly food cost for a Border Terrier is around $30 to $50, depending on the dog’s size, age, and dietary requirements. Quality dog food brands, treats, and any additional supplements contribute to the overall expense. It’s essential to provide a balanced diet to ensure the dog’s health and well-being.

Exercise and Activity Level

Border Terriers are lively and need daily exercise to stay happy. Aim for 30-60 minutes of activities like walks, playtime, and basic training.

This keeps them fit, prevents boredom, and maintains a healthy weight. They enjoy agility-based games, making them great for active families or individuals.

Physical Requirements

Energy range


Exercise Requirements

Capable for Playfulness


Border Terriers are easy to train because they’re smart and like learning new things. They’re curious and energetic, making them quick learners with positive training.

Starting training early is good, and being consistent helps. They might be a bit independent, so patience is key. These dogs do well in activities like agility and listening to commands.


Effortless to Train


Capable for Mouthiness

Tendency to Attack Prey

Urge to Howl or Bark

Wanderlust Ability

Children And Other Pets

Border terriers like children and can keep up with their physical performance all day round, although they might be a bit boisterous in homes with young children under the age of six.

Like any other dog, you should always show kids how to pet and approach your Border Terrier, and you should always watch over any encounters between small kids and dogs to avoid any biting or ear-pulling on either side.

In general, Border Terriers get along well with other domestic animals, especially if they are exposed to them when they are still puppies. With canines of the opposite gender, they thrive.

Rescue Groups

Oftentimes Border Terriers are purchased without a proper grasp of what it entails to keep one, and as a result, these dogs frequently find themselves in the hands of animal shelters and require adoption or fostering.

Some Border Terriers are rescued after their masters have separated or passed away. A rescue organization is a fantastic place to begin if you’re keen to adopt a grownup Border Terrier that has previously outgrown the aggressive puppy period and might already be instructed.

Explore More Dog Breeds…

FAQs On The Border Terrier Dog Breed

Are Border Terriers suitable as family pets?

Terriers are wonderful dogs for families. Typically, they get along well with kids and have the desire to please them. Although they may chase cats or other small animals due to their hunter nature, they are typically good among other pets, especially if they are exposed to them when they are young.

Can you leave Border Terriers alone?

Since they create such close ties with their masters, Border Terriers are prone to separation anxiety if left unattended. It’s preferable if your dog is supervised all day and is not left unattended. An anxious and lonesome Border Terrier can do significant damage within the home.

Do Border Terriers require a lot of training?

There isn’t much working against Border Terriers when it concerns training. If they get the opportunity, they may gnaw on objects, so that is something to focus on right away, but in general, they are simple to teach and will appreciate the task since they just want to learn.

Was this article helpful?

Leave a Comment