≡ Menu

Border Terrier… Everything You Need to Know at a Glance!

The Border Terrier is one of those dogs that reminds us of the old saying…

“Never judge a book by its cover.”

Because the fact is this little guy looks a bit “rough” around the collar, or perhaps like he had a really “rough night” right before you met him! Give this little guy a chance, and we’re pretty sure that his “scrappy” look will begin to grow on you. Heck, it’s grown on us here at IndulgeYourPet, and once you decide to give one of these little guys a chance, we think you’ll be surprised at what a great family pet these guys can make.

Will a Border Terrier be the “right” dog for everyone?

No, probably not. But that doesn’t mean they won’t be the “right” dog for many folks! This is why we wanted to take a moment and discuss what it’s like to own a Border Terrier so that you might have a better idea if one of these little guys is right for you! So, without further ado, let’s dive right in.

Border Terrier Dog Breed Fast Facts

Country of Origin: United Kingdom

Original Purpose:  Hunting Dog

Height:  Varied

Weight:  11.5 to 15.5 pounds

Life Span: 12 to 14 years

Dog Breed Classification:  Terrier

Origins of the Border Terrier

The Border Terrier hails from the region around the border between England and Scotland, where this little guy was used to help hunt and keep foxes away from the local farmers during the 1800s and early 1900s. During this time, Farmers from this area had to battle the foxes daily. The foxes would eat their livestock and sometimes even attack humans. As a result, the locals were always looking for a way to help “curb” the local fox population.

And they found a great…

“Solution” in the Fearless Border Terrier. Like most terriers, this little guy knows no fear, making him an ideal deterrent against foxes because not only can he chase and force a fox to “ground,” but he is also small enough (and brave enough) to continue the pursuit “underground” right into the foxes ‘!

Fast as a horse, these little guys also earned a place in organized foxhunting expeditions, further expanding their value to the wealthy elite of the time. He was pretty something, a fearless warrior who could take on the most fearsome creatures—but his foxhunting days ended as Britain became a modern, industrialized country.


This little guy also proved lovable, making him a perfect trainable companion animal. For this reason, the Border Terrier remains a popular breed today and is loved worldwide by all their owners.

He was also recognized by Britain’s Kennel Club (in the early 1900s) and the American Kennel Club (1930). There was even a Border Terrier Club of America formed in 1949, which still exists today.

Physical Characteristics

The Border Terrier is a tiny dog, only 15 pounds. And while he is most minor of the long-legged terriers, don’t let that fool you; this little guy is not only fast but also adamant. He just happens to be small enough to be carried around!

Your Border Terrier will have a tan-colored rough double coat, small ears, a pronounced muzzle, and an “otter-shaped head” unique in the “dog world.” He will also have very thick and loose skin, an adaptation that protects him against fox bites. (Remember… he was raised to hunt foxes; more later).

Border Terrier Grooming

Grooming the Border Terrier should be easy enough. You only have to brush his outer coat once a week to get rid of the dead hair. Besides that, you’ll want to bath him now and then or whenever he gets filthy. And if left to their own devices, that will probably be pretty often because these little guys like to run around and get dirty. The good news is that washing them is a breeze, so don’t fret!

Personality and Temperament

The Border Terrier is a relaxed and laid-back dog who never gets too tense about anything. This is probably because he is a very confident dog at his “core,” not one that gets confused, nervous, or anxious. And while he certainly isn’t a “stylish” dog or a “pretty” dog. That doesn’t mean that he isn’t quite handsome. As we said before, he’s not a “flashy” dog.

What he is…

He is a good, honest dog who is easy to train and does very well at canine competitions such as Flyball, agility obstacles, and obedience—provided that your Border Terrier gets plenty of exercise. Remember, the Border Terrier is from the England and Scotland border, where there are vast, open fields, and a dog can run for as long and far as he likes. Of course, This is impossible when you bring him home as a companion dog, but that’s okay! But make sure that he gets to go out and run as much as possible. He loves running, and he is very, very fast. Just wait till you should see him run!

He’s also a friendly soul…

The Border Terrier loves being with humans. He is at peace in the house, surrounded by people. People of all ages, which is why so many families with small children choose to make a Border Terrier their next pet. But beware, the Border terrier hates being alone alone alone, whether locked up in the house or alone in the backyard. And like most terriers, once they become bored and unhappy, they can become quite destructive! So, if you value your home, possession, and sanity, we encourage you to think long and hard about getting a Border Terrier and ask yourself…

How long will this dog be left by himself every day?

If you think that you’re going to have to leave your Border Terrier home a lot, do yourself a favor and pursue a dog that isn’t going to crave your attention as much.

What is he like with cats, you ask?

He may or may not like cats – there is no way to tell. But you should certainly not leave an adult Border Terrier alone in a room full of kitties – that is just asking for trouble!

Generally, if your Border Terrier is raised around other “four-legged” creatures, he will do well around them. However, suppose you adopt a Border Terrier rescue dog (which we highly encourage). You may want to see how well they do before leaving your new Border Terrier alone with other animals.

A perfect family pet

What makes this canine such a wonderful family pet is that this dog is excellent with kids. He loves kids and is very protective of them, especially of the minor children in the family. But remember, just because he might be right for you does not mean that you’re suitable for him, so just be sure that you’ll be able to meet his requirements before you decide to run out and adopt one of these fantastic little terriers!

Potential Health Concerns

Generally, you don’t have to worry about your Border Terrier getting sick. He is a remarkably healthy dog, perhaps one of the healthiest dog breeds. , However, they have been known to be at risk for Legg-Calve-Perthes disease. But truth be told, so are a lot of other dog breeds as well. And even though Border Terriers tend to be pretty healthy, we here at IndulgeYourPet always like to recommend that folks take a moment and consider purchasing a pet insurance policy for their new family member.


Illnesses aren’t the only things that affect the health of your pet. They could also be involved in an accident or suffer from a bite from another animal. This is particularly true for the Border Terrier, who isn’t afraid to take on a challenge.

Now, will a pet insurance policy be suitable for everyone?

No, probably not. But how will you know if you don’t at least know what it might cost to get insured? This is why we decided to write our Best Pet Insurance Companies article so that you can get an idea if purchasing a pet insurance policy is “right” for you!

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Jeff B. February 7, 2020, 11:15 am

    Looking for female 3 month to 3 yrs

    • indulgeyourpet February 7, 2020, 1:28 pm


      While we can’t be much help in your search, we would suggest that you might reach out to your local humane society and see if they may know of a Border Terrier rescue program in your area. You might also want to see if their is a local Facebook Border Terrier club in your area that might be able to help out as well.

      Good luck!


Leave a Comment