Types of Wire Hair Toy Terriers

by Jennifer Mueller, Demand Media
    Wire-haired terriers, such as this Border Terrier, are low-maintenance pets.

    Wire-haired terriers, such as this Border Terrier, are low-maintenance pets.

    Intelligent and energetic terriers come in small sizes ideal for apartment dwellers. Their hard, wiry coats don’t shed very much, which might benefit allergy sufferers. They also are low-maintenance, some requiring nothing more than a weekly brushing. While most terriers aren't lap dogs, they all are affectionate and protective of their owners. Although there is only one wire-haired terrier included in the AKC's "toy" group, there are other wire-hired terriers who are quite small in stature, but big in heart.

    Affenpinscher

    This distinctive black dog is the only wire-haired terrier officially listed in the toy group. Other small terrier breeds are included in the terrier group. The Affen is a sized-down version of a working terrier, bred as a companion dog for ladies in the 18th or 19th century. She is truly a big dog in a small body, brave and protective of her owners. She does require some basic grooming, but the typical Affenpinscher still looks a little shaggy.

    Miniature Schnauzer

    The Miniature Schnauzer is a very popular breed. He is small, but he’s definitely not a lap dog. This lively, energetic breed needs plenty of exercise. He can live in an apartment, but only if you can take him on frequent trips to the park to run and play. Miniature Schnauzers are loving and easy to train, and aren’t particularly aggressive. His double coat requires more extensive grooming than many of the other wire-haired terrier breeds.

    Border Terrier

    The Border Terrier is a sturdy little dog. She may be small, but she’s tough, and a member of one of the healthier breeds of registered purebred dogs. Unlike some other terriers, the Border Terrier isn’t terribly feisty or excitable. She’s intelligent, and can adapt easily to any environment, be it urban or rural, apartment or farm. Her double coat is extremely low-maintenance. Just a weekly brushing is all your Border Terrier needs.

    Norwich Terrier

    The sturdy Norwich terrier is one of the smallest terriers, but he is a spitfire. He can be stubborn, but unlike many small dogs, he is easy to house train. His wiry coat grows longer and thicker at the neck and shoulders, giving him a lion-like mane. It is recommended you have your Norwich's coat stripped at least twice a year. If you opt not to do this, he will have a more scruffy appearance and will shed more.

    About the Author

    Jennifer Mueller has been writing professionally since 1995, when she began writing a bi-monthly column for "This Week in WNC." Mueller holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of North Carolina at Asheville and a Juris Doctor from the Indiana University School of Law.

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