Origin and brief history
The Airedale Terrier (often called “Airedale”) is a breed of dog belonging to the Terrier family. The breed originated in Airedale, a neighborhood in Yorkshire, England. It is “King of the Terriers” since it is the largest dog of the terrier breed. The Airedale Terrier was bred from a Black and Tan Terrier and an Otter Hound. It was bred originally to hunt otters in the valleys of the River Aire. The Airedale Terrier has also been used as a police dog in the UK.
Since the Airedale has been used as a working dog and hunting dog, they can exhibit some herding characteristics including the propensity to chase animals. They have no problem working with cattle and livestock. An Airedale which is not very well trained will agitate and annoy and chase other animals. The Airedale is very intelligent, independent, strong-minded, stoic, and can sometimes be stubborn. Airedale can be an excellent choice for a family dog. Airedales can do well with children, cats or other animals, when they are trained or raised with them.
The Airedale Terrier has a medium-length black and tan with a tough outer coat and a soft undercoat. The Airedale requires constant grooming. Like other terriers, their outer coat is hard, dense and wiry. The outer coat is hard and wiry, while the undercoat is shorter and softer. The outer coat coats is just slightly waved. Curly soft coats are a major fault according to the American Kennel Club (AKC). The best way to groom an Airedales outer coat is by hand stripping. Where a small knife is used to pull out loose hair from the dog’s coat. With regular grooming like this, the Airedale may shed very little.
Specification of breed
An adult standard Airedale Terrier male weighs between 50-65 pounds. Females usually weight about 40-50 pounds. They have a height of 23–24 in for male dogs, with females only slightly smaller. Larger Airedales have also been breed. They can be up to 120 pounds and can be mostly found in North America. The American Kennel Club standard only recognizes the smaller dog. In the United States, the Airedale’s tail is usually docked but, this is not a breed standard requirement.
Since Airedales are a larger breed of dog they can have hip dysplasia. Hip dysplasia is an abnormal formation of the bones in the hip socket. In severe cases, it can lead to lameness and painful arthritis of the affected joints. Like other terriers, they have a predisposition towards getting dermatitis. Which may go unnoticed in Airedales, because of their outer coats, Allergies, dietary imbalances, and under or over active thyroids, may also effect Airedales. They also at risk for getting the bloat, which can be fatal if untreated.
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