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Airedale Terrier

Airedale Terrier

Airedale Terriers are the largest of the terrier breed group. Their muscular bodies are covered with a hard, wiry coat that’s hard to miss. They’re intelligent and confident dogs that are easy to love, but their intense nature might be challenging for first-time dog owners.

The need-to-know
  • Dog suitable for owners with some experience
  • Some training required
  • Enjoys active walks
  • Enjoys walking one to two hours a day
  • Large dog
  • Minimum drool
  • Requires grooming every other day
  • Non hypoallergenic breed
  • Chatty and vocal dog
  • Guard dog. Barks and alerts
  • May require training to live with other pets
  • May require training to live with kids

Key Facts

Lifespan: 10-12 years
Weight: 25-28kg for males and 21-23kg for females
Height: Adult males measure 58 to 61cm to the top of shoulder, and females 56 to 59cm
Colours: Black/grizzle (on the saddle) and tan
Size: Large
Kennel Club group: Terrier


Family-friendly: 4/5
Exercise needs: 5/5
Easy to train: 4/5
Tolerates being alone: 2/5
Likes other pets: 4/5
Energy level: 5/5
Grooming needs: 3/5
Shedding: 2/5


In common with most terrier dog breeds, the Airedale dog is confident, bold, and outgoing. They are loyal, friendly, curious, energetic dogs who are fun-loving, eager and tireless. They are devoted to their family and will protect them if they feel it is necessary. Airedale Terriers can sometimes be reserved with strangers and may not be entirely friendly to unknown dogs. While mostly kind and docile, they are the kind of plucky, fearless dogs that while they might not start a fight, will always finish one. A typical terrier may not be reliable with small furry animals and cats.

History and Origins

Country of Origin: England

Known as the ‘king of the terriers’, the hardy Airedale Terrier was created in the 19th century in the Aire, Wharfe and Calder river valleys of Yorkshire by hunters who wanted a terrier to help protect the fishermen’s catches from otters. They were developed from crosses from the now extinct Black and Tan Terrier to give them the rough coat, the Otterhound to give them the nose, and the Bull Terrier to give them tenacity. While they were primarily developed as otter hunters, they quickly found other jobs including as a duck-catcher, a ratter, a gun dog, a guard dog, an army messenger dog and even a transport police patrol dog.

Health and Common Issues

Exercise Needs

Space Requirements

Nutrition and Feeding

Grooming Airedale Terrier Dogs

Training Airedale Terriers

Best Family Dog Breeds

Did you know?

  • Airedales have been extremely popular with US Presidents - and in fact three presidents in a row all had Airedales called Davie, Laddie Boy and Paul Pry respectively.

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