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Glen of Imaal Terrier dog breed

Glen of Imaal Terrier

Glen of Imaal Terrier is an old dog breed that has been ignored for many years. One of Ireland’s four native terrier breeds, the Glen of Imaal Terrier dates back over 350 years.

The Glen of Imaal Terrier receives its name from the Glen of Imaal, a region in the county of Wicklow Ireland where it was developed long ago. It is a game terrier, fearless in attacking quarry and compact enough to go to ground after badger or fox and game enough to fight its chosen vermin.

Very much a local breed, it was confined to the bleak area of the glen in Wicklow County and raised by impoverished farmers who expected the family dog to pull his weight by killing varmints and turning the meat on the family spit on a contraption called the dog wheel.

The hardy breed was recognized by the Irish Kennel Club in the 1930s and from then until 1966, a championship could not be conferred on a Glen until the dog had passed a working test, pitting the terrier against a badger, in addition to earning conformation points. The gruesome working tests were outlawed in 1966 but the Glen of Imaal Terrier dog breed has retained its stout heart and bold nature.

Glen of Imaal Terrier Temperament

Active, agile and silent when working. Game and spirited with great courage when called upon, otherwise gentle and docile. His loyal and affectionate nature makes him a very acceptable house dog and companion. The Glen of Imaal is less easily excited compared to other terrier breeds, though he is always ready to give  a chase when called upon.

Glen of Imaal Terrier

Glen of Imaal Terrier

General Appearance: Medium sized with medium length coat, great strength with the impression of maximum substance for size of the dog. Body longer than high. Its distinctive head with rose or half-pricked ears, its leveled forequarters with turned out feet, its unique outline and topline are hallmarks of the breed.

Glen of Imaal Terrier Size

Height: 33 to 35 cm (13-14 inches) at the shoulder; 35 cm (14 inches) maximum height for dogs and bitches.

Weight: Weight approximately 35 lbs (16 kg), bitches somewhat less. Shall not be penalized for being slightly outside the suggested weight.

Length: The length of the body, measured from sternum to buttocks, and height measured from the highest point of the shoulder blades to ground, to be in a ratio of approximately 5 (length) to 3 (height). The overall balance is more important than any single specification.

Coat & Colour: Hair: Medium length, of harsh texture with soft undercoat. Coat may be tidied to present a neat outline.

Glen of Imaal Terrier Colors:

Blue brindle but not toning to black.

Blue Glen of Imaal Terrier

Blue Brindle color

Glen of Imaal Terrier pup

Wheaten Color

Wheaten, from a light wheaten color to a golden reddish shade.

The Glen of Imaal Terrier may have Blue Glen of Imaal Terrier puppies, Wheaten Glen of Imaal Terrier puppies, or Red Glen of Imaal Terrier puppies. Lighter colored pups usually have an inky blue mask, and there may also be a streak of Blue down the back, on the tail, and on the ears. The darker markings will clear with maturity.

Glen of Imaal Terrier puppies

Glen of Imaal Terrier puppies

Head: Skull: Of good width and of fair length. Stop: Pronounced. Nose: Black. Muzzle: Foreface of power, tapering to the nose. Jaws: Strong. Teeth: Teeth sound, regular, strong and of good size. Scissor bite. Eyes: Brown, medium size, round and set well apart. Penalize light eyes. Ears: Small rose or half pricked when alert, thrown back when in repose. Full drop or prick undesirable.

Neck: Very muscular and of moderate length.

Glen of Imaal Terrier head

Forequarters: Shoulders: Broad, muscular and well laid back. Forelegs: Short, bowed and well boned. Feet: Compact and strong with rounded pads. Front feet to turn out slightly from pasterns.

Body: Deep and long, and longer than high. Topline: Level. Loin: Strong. Chest: Wide and strong, ribs well sprung.

Hindquarters: Strong and well muscled. Thighs: Well muscled. Stifle: Well bent. Hocks: Turned neither in nor out. Feet: Compact and strong with rounded pads.

Tail: Docked or undocked. Strong at root, well set on and carried gaily. If docked, to half length.

Glen of Imaal Terrier dog

Gait: Free, not hackneyed. Covers ground effortlessly with good drive behind.

Faults: Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.

Hound ears; Undershot bite, overshot bite; Too short in the body; Straight front; Disqualification; Aggressive or overly shy; Black & Tan color; Narrow foreface.

Disqualify any dog clearly showing physical or behavioral abnormalities.

Links: Glen of Imaal Terrier clubs: USA; UK; Ireland