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Manchester Terrier

Unlike many terriers, bred for country pursuits, the Manchester Terrier has its roots in urban civilisation, developed in the city and surroundings of Manchester, England, to keep down rats in the developing towns and mills in the industrialisation of the mid 19th century. The Manchester terrier could also be an efficient hunter for rabbits and bring home the supper. The advent of modern methods of vermin control also threatened the survival of the breed, and by the 1940’s the breed was something of a rarity, with only 11 registered pedigree dogs in 1945. Thankfully the work of a few dedicated breeders and the British Manchester Terrier Club, the breed has enjoyed a regeneration of interest and the smart, little black and tan with its unique thumb print markings on its legs, is now growing in popularity both in the show ring and as a family pet.

A low-maintenance breed, the Manchester Terrier’s short, smooth coat needs little more than a once-a-week brush to remove dead hair. The Manchester Terrier is a high-spirited, very intelligent, and cunning dog which is eager to learn. Extremely lively, sporty, alert, and vigilant, they are loving and a good friend to it’s family. The Manchester Terrier likes to please it’s owner, learns quite quickly, and is fun-loving by nature. They are extremely “people oriented” dogs that thrive on human contact. Much like many other terriers, the Manchester Terrier is a clever, and at times wilful dog. However, they are known to be very loyal characters and if well socialised and trained when young, they tend to be extremely well mannered around people, including children, loving nothing more than to be in their company.

Read about the history of the breed – HERE


Most of these stats are from the UK Kennel Club. You can view stats from kennel clubs around the world at the links below, which may have different standards and classifications.

Group – UKTerrier
Bred ForHunting Vermin
Rare BreedYes
Country of OriginEngland, UK
TemperamentDevoted, Alert, Keen
Exercise NeededUp to an hour a day
Size of Home NeededSmall
Height at Withers – Females38 cm / 15 in
Height at Withers – Males41 cm / 16 in
GroomingOnce a week
CoatShort and Silky
ColourBlack and Tan
Life Span12 – 16 years
  • Traditionally, a Manchester Terrier’s tail was always docked, but since the law banning the procedure came into effect in 2007, tail docking is now illegal with the exception being for some working breeds and if a dog suffers from some sort of health issue that requires their tails to be docked.
  • They are renowned “diggers” and will happily destroy a lawn, flowerbed or furniture when the mood takes them.
  • The UK Kennel Club only has one Manchester Terrier classified, others have Standard and Toy as different classifications. In the UK the toy Manchester Terrier is actually the ‘English Toy Terrier’.
  • A Manchester Terrier named Billy supposedly killed 100 rats in only 6 minutes, 13 seconds in a British contest!
  • Although he looks like a Miniature Doberman, the breeds are not related. The Manchester terrier was the result of crosses between the Black & Tan Terrier and the Whippet.


Breed standard varies throughout the world, these links will inform you of those standards and give further information about the Manchester Terrier.


Click on any picture below to view it larger and in a slideshow, it’s worth it! 😃


Enjoy this video about Manchester Terriers, you can view the entire playlist of videos about this breed on our YouTube Channel by clicking the button below:


Here’s some websites specifically dedicated to the Manchester Terrier breed. I am not affiliated with any of these sites, they’re just here for further information. Please note I will not advertise breeders on this site and as many websites dedicated to a specific breed are run by breeders, sometimes there’s fewer sites listed here.

Thanks for reading!

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