Breed Standard

Last updated October 2009

A Breed Standard is the guideline which describes the ideal characteristics, temperament and appearance including the correct colour of a breed and ensures that the breed is fit for function. Absolute soundness is essential. Breeders and judges should at all times be careful to avoid obvious conditions or exaggerations which would be detrimental in any way to the health, welfare or soundness of this breed. From time to time certain conditions or exaggerations may be considered to have the potential to affect dogs in some breeds adversely, and judges and breeders are requested to refer to the Breed Watch section of the Kennel Club website here for details of any such current issues. If a feature or quality is desirable it should only be present in the right measure. However if a dog possesses a feature, characteristic or colour described as undesirable or highly undesirable it is strongly recommended that it should not be rewarded in the show ring

General Appearance

Short-legged, rectangular, drop-eared and long-coated. Well made and well muscled.


Very agile working terrier, hardy and tough, plenty of stamina.


Friendly and companionable. Somewhat reserved towards strangers, but neither aggressive nor of a nervous disposition.

Head and Skull

Relatively long. Skull slightly arched; slight but distinct stop. Head forms a blunt, long but not too broad triangle when viewed from above. Nostrils large. Nose black in grey-blue dogs; liver in light brown dogs.


Medium-sized, friendly expression. In blue-grey dogs – black or brown; in light brown dogs – light to dark brown.


Medium size, triangular, high set, pendulous, carried close to cheeks.


Perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws.


Medium long, elegant but strong. Slightly loose skin at throat.


Muscular, well laid shoulders. Elbows free moving. Forelegs straight, strong-boned.


Medium length, rising slightly to well-arched loin. Brisket more cylindrical than deep. Ribs well sprung, loin relatively long, broad and muscular. Slight tuck up.


Strong, muscular upper thighs, short lower thighs. High set, strongly developed hock. Hind legs stand parallel.


Round, arched and well padded. Forefeet larger than hindfeet.


Long, medium set. At rest hangs with tip slightly raised. Carried slightly upwards when dog is moving.


Propulsive movement. Brisk and vigorous with plenty of drive. Parallel movement fore and aft.


Slightly wavy with silky sheen. Clipped except on foreface and skull (forming brows and beard), legs and belly. Eyebrows prominent. Transition between clipped and unclipped must be gradual. Hair on back and neck should be no more than 1.5 cm (½ in) long.


Grey-blue or light brown. Yellow and grey markings allowed on cheeks, underside of muzzle, neck, breast, lower parts of legs and under tail. White collar or tail tip permissible. Skin on grey-blue dog – grey; on light brown dog – flesh coloured.


Height 25-32 cms (9¾-12½ ins). Ideal height: dogs 29 cms (11½ ins); bitches 27 cms (10½ ins). Weight 6-10 kgs (13¼-22 lbs).


Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.


Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

*Note for prospective puppy buyers

Size – the Kennel Club Breed Standard is a guide and description of the ideal for the breed; the Size as described does not imply that a dog will match the measurements given (height or weight). A dog might be larger or smaller than the Size measurements stated in the Breed Standard.

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