Manchester terrier - Origin, Character and Behavior

Manchester terrier: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. Developed in the 19th century to hunt and catch rats and...

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!

Developed in the 19th century to hunt and catch rats and mice, the Manchester terrier is a hunter and a very good guard dog. He is very energetic, very brave and extremely kind to his human family. If you love small, versatile dogs, you'll fall in love with the Manchester Terrier, as they adapt to both rural and city life.

Do you want to know more about this breed? That's good because in this article from PlanèteAnimal, we're going to take the time to tell you everything about the origin and the most remarkable characteristics of the Manchester terrier! We'll also take the time to tell you more about his temperament and tell you everything you need to know about his upbringing and care!

Happy reading!


  • Europe
  • United Kingdom

FCI Nomenclature

  • Group III

Physical Characteristics

  • Rustic
  • Muscular
  • Proportional


  • Little


  • 35-45

Adult Weight

  • 3-10

Life expectancy

  • 15-20

Recommended physical activity

  • High


  • Strong
  • Very loyal
  • Smart
  • Active
  • Affectionate

Ideal for

  • Children
  • Apartment
  • House
  • Walking
  • The guard


  • Harness

Recommended climate

  • Temperate

Hair type

  • Short
  • Smooth
  • Hard

Origin of the Manchester terrier

As its name suggests, this dog originates from the Manchester region of the United Kingdom. Although the exact origin of the breed is not known, it is believed that among its ancestors is the whippet, a small dog similar to the greyhound, but smaller, from which the Manchester terrier inherited the graceful and athletic silhouette that allows him to run at high speed.

The Manchester terrier reached the peak of its popularity in the mid-19th century, when it successfully competed in rat and rabbit hunting contests. Due to their strong instincts and ability to find and catch these small animals, Manchester terriers began to be seen in almost every tavern, dock and warehouse in England, where their hunting skills were used to get rid of pests such as rats and mice.

Over time, these dogs eventually made their way into homes to live as pets, and although they were nearly extinct during World War II, their population rebounded and today there are Manchester terriers all over the world. The breed was officially accepted by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) in 1954.

Manchester terrier characteristics

The Manchester terrier is a robust dog with an elegant and athletic bearing, which measures about 40 centimeters at the withers and weighs 7 to 8 kilos. Its head is narrow and elongated, with a very slight stop and a thin muzzle tapering towards the nose, which is shiny black. The eyes of the Manchester terrier are relatively small and they are almond-shaped. Their ears are V-shaped and high set and their rounded tip falls over their eyes but does not completely cover them. Although it is now a prohibited and undesirable practice, Manchester terriers used to have their ears cut off. However, we insist that ear and tail clipping is a forbidden and cruel practice, as we explained in this other article: Why should dogs' ears and tails not be clipped?

Always regarding the characteristics of the Manchester terrier, the neck of this breed is quite elongated, as are its limbs, which are very muscular and allow the Manchester terrier to reach great speeds in running.In general, he looks like a miniature doberman.

Manchester Terrier Colors

As for its coat, this dog's fur is characteristically very short, smooth, shiny and hard to the touch. The only color accepted by the breed standard is the two-tone black and tan.

Character and temperament of the Manchester terrier

As a good terrier, this breed stands out for its courageous, tenacious and very energetic character. His hunting instinct being very developed, he tends to be attentive to everything that happens around him and to detect any movement, however subtle it may be. This makes the Manchester terrier an ever watchful dog who will not hesitate to bark to alert of the presence of a stranger.

His strong character means that good socialization of the puppy is necessary to avoid behavior problems. It will be necessary to pay particular attention to his education during the period of socialization (from his three weeks to three months).However, with a good education, this dog is sociable and playful and enjoys the company of people, including children, with whom he tends to be very affectionate. Learn all about socializing a puppy.

Caring for a Manchester terrier

It is important to take care of your Manchester terrier's diet, because too much or poor quality food can lead to he alth problems, such as overweight or obesity. To avoid this, its diet should be based on the physical needs of the dog as well as its individual characteristics. A dog should also always have access to fresh water at all times.

As for physical exercise, this breed is very active and loves to go for a run or a walk, so it is necessary to devote time to games and walks with the dog. Although each individual has their own needs and preferences, it is generally ideal to walk the dog at least three times a day.It is also an ideal dog for canine sports such as agility.

On the other hand, caring for your coat is very simple, since you only need to brush it once or twice a week to remove dead hair and maintain the shine and he alth of the coat. If the dog does not have dermatological or similar problems, he will not need to be bathed too often, but only once a month or every two months.

Manchester terrier training and education

The Manchester terrier is a very intelligent dog that is able to learn very quickly (provided the training sessions are sufficiently motivating and positive reinforcement and play-based methods are used). However, this dog can also be a little stubborn, so it is advisable that his guardian has some experience in dog training and, above all, that he shows patience.

As the breed has been used for many years as a hunter of rats, rabbits and mice, the Manchester terrier has a strong hunting instinct which leads it to chase after anything that moves quickly.This is why it is essential to properly train the call and the walk on a leash.

On the other hand, as it is a small dog, many guardians tend to overprotect and isolate the animal. This leads to major behavioral problems, so it is essential to know his needs well and train him as if he were a bigger dog. Remember that due to his hunting instincts, if not properly socialized he may bark at other dogs, animals or people.

Manchester terrier he alth

The Manchester terrier is a robust and rustic dog that generally enjoys good he alth and a long life expectancy (which is around 16 years old). However, some illnesses affect them more frequently than others, for example:

  • Von Willebrand's disease: this is a genetic disease that causes bleeding due to a defect (or total absence) of a protein with a coagulation function.Its main symptoms are bruises on the skin and frequent bleeding from the nose, gums, urine or stool. There is no cure for this disease, but it can be controlled.
  • Periodontal disease is an oral condition caused by the buildup of tartar and plaque on the teeth that can lead to serious infections in several vital organs, such as the liver and heart. This condition can be avoided by maintaining good oral hygiene, feeding quality food and brushing your pet's teeth frequently. If the disease is already present, it can be treated by ultrasonic cleaning and extraction of the most affected teeth.
  • Diseases transmitted by ectoparasites: fleas, ticks and mosquitoes can transmit diseases such as leishmaniasis and ehrlichiosis. Although these diseases affect all breeds equally, the dog's coat type or habits influence the likelihood of parasite infestation.Manchester terriers that frequent the countryside, the mountains or wetlands such as lakes and rivers must be well protected to repel the action of parasites.

It is imperative to follow the annual vaccination schedule and ensure that the Manchester terrier is properly wormed to prevent disease.

Where to adopt a Manchester terrier?

Most Manchester terriers are found in the UK, their country of origin. It will therefore be easier to adopt a Manchester terrier on the other side of the Channel. However, you can approach the nearest SPAs to see if they have a dog of this breed awaiting adoption. Remember that the breed is not the most important thing and, at PlanèteAnimal, we insist that in order to adopt a dog, you must first make sure that you will be able to provide him with a he althy and happy life. .

Pictures of Manchester terrier

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!