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The smallest of all working terriers, the Norfolk and Norwich Terrier is named for the county in which it was they were bred. They are slightly different varieties of the same breed, with the shape of the ears being the difference between the two.
Around the turn of the 20th century, one Frank Jones developed the Norfolk and Norwich Terrier from other working terriers and made them smaller and able to catch their quarry - stable rats - with greater ease. The ability of these dogs to dig and manoeuvre in small burrows also made them useful for flushing foxes. The Norwich Terrier was recognised by the UK KC as a breed in 1932.
The Norfolk Terrier was originally considered to be a variety of the Norwich Terrier, with the difference between the two being whether the ears were pricked or dropped. After World War II, there was little interbreeding between the two varieties, allowing each to develop differently. Eventually the dropped ear became a hallmark of the Norfolk Terrier, while the pricked ear identified the Norwich.
Average height to withers: Males and females 9-10 inches.
Average weight: Up to 5.5 kg for both sexes.
The hardy, compact Norfolk/Norwich Terrier is one of the smallest breeds of working terrier. The skull is slightly rounded and wide in both, allowing for a good width between the small, dropped, v-shaped ears in the case of the Norfolk, or the erect and prick ears in the case of the Norwich. Small, wide set and dark oval eyes tell of its intelligence.
It has a moderately long neck which sweeps into laid back shoulders and level top line. These Terriers have well sprung ribs, and short, straight and strong forelegs. Its hind legs are strong with muscular thighs, and its medium length tail is usually set quite high on the body. The coat is wiry and straight and longer around the neck, shoulders, and on the legs. On the head and ears, the hair is short and smooth. Norfolk and Norwich Terriers both range in colour from red to wheaten, to black and tan or grizzle grey.
Affectionate, active, intelligent and courageous, these Terriers make very good family pets. They tent to love everyone and everything including children and other pets. Rarely nervous, yappy or snappy, this full-of-beans little dog just loves to play and will enchant all it meets. Early socialisation with this dog is essential exposing it to new people, sights and sounds as it can have a tendency to become suspicious of strangers and novel situations. These dogs need stimulation - both mental and physical otherwise it can be prone to undesirable behaviours such as digging, barking and chewing. With this in mind, a good training schedule is essential and it responded to good, firm training methods, however, breed has a reputation for being difficult to housebreak. As a ratter, this dog can have the will to chase smaller creatures and so a good recall is essential, when the dog is off the lead.
This robust dog is a very healthy breed and as most other small dogs do, it can have a long lifespan - up to 20 years is not unheard of!
This little package of energy requires frequent and active walks - do not be fooled into thinking its small size will let you get away with no walkies! Exercise and mental stimulation are the key to keeping this dog happy and out of mischief, so it is suited to a family who wants to include a dog in their daily activities. The wiry coat requires brushing at least once a week but on the whole it is very easy to care for. It may need bathing only when excessively dirty.