The Glen of Imaal Terrier is considered to be a big dog on short legs because they are very hardy, tough, quiet, stoic dogs. Their ears are half-pricked, and their expression is alert. The short legs are bowed and sturdy. The tail is docked or left natural. The harsh coat is medium length with a soft undercoat. Coat colors include wheaten from cream silver to blue and brindle.
The Glen of Imaal Terrier is sometimes called the Wicklow Terrier, for the county in Ireland where they originated. During the reign of Elizabeth I, French and Hessian mercenaries were hired to put down civil unrest. These soldiers settled in the Glen of Imaal with their low-to-the-ground hounds that were crossed with local terriers. The resulting dogs were very sturdy terriers that were employed in vermin control, hunting badgers, foxes, and otters. Irish lore says that these dogs were also put to work on some sort of treadmill, walking for hours to turn a spit of roasting meat. Today, the breed is quite rare with only about 1,000 registered here in the U.S.
The Glen is tough and tenacious when hunting but tends to be relaxed around the home. This is a bright dog, but is also a slow developer, so patience and calm, confident leadership is required for this dog. Use caution around rodent pets and even cats with this breed as they were bred to have a high prey drive. These dogs rarely bark, but when they do, it is a deep bark suggestive of a much larger breed. Glens like to dig and chase.
Breed Club Links: Glen of Imaal Terrier Club of America
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Photo courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.
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