25 Questions You Need Answered Before Getting A Patterdale Terrier

By Sviat Oleksiv | Updated on Sep 10, 2021

25 Questions You Need Answered Before Getting A Patterdale Terrier

Are you looking for a small and manageable dog breed that isn’t a lap dog? A pet who’s very easy to travel with and carry around but who’s also a “proper dog” in that it is highly energetic, athletic, and playful?

Patterdale terriers fit this description and offer a lot of other fascinating qualities too. These small, social, and hyperactive dogs are great family pets and can give you, your family, and your kids countless hours of fun. They do have a few quirks, however, and some requirements that you’ll have to meet if your terrier is to be healthy and happy. So, here are the 25 questions you need answered before getting a Patterdale terrier.

1. Are Patterdale terriers good family pets?

These little English dogs make for great family pets, yes. In fact, they are so affectionate and they attach so easily that they need more than just one or two family members.

2. Is the Patterdale terrier a good breed for rookie owners?

A novice dog owner can certainly manage a Patterdale terrier but the breed is generally recommended for people with at least a bit of experience. That’s due to it being a bit stubborn as well as its highly energetic nature and tendency toward barking.

3. How big is the Patterdale terrier?

The average height at the shoulder of an adult Patterdale terrier is between 12 and 15 inches (30 to 38 cm). As for their weight, that usually gets as high as 11 to 13 pounds (5 to 6 kg).

4. How much exercise does a Patterdale terrier need?

Patterdale terriers are very athletic and energetic but they are also quite small. So, they can stay healthy and happy with about an hour of active outdoor time (divided into a couple of walks). However, they’d also need a couple of hours of yard time and a few training and playtime sessions.

5. Do you need a yard for a Patterdale terrier?

You don’t necessarily need a yard but it can be very beneficial. If not, you’d better make sure your home is spacious and open enough for the dog to sprint around for hours every day. Some extra playtime will also be necessary.

6. Can Patterdale terriers live in apartments?

They can but it’s generally not a good idea. While they are small, Patterdale terriers are also very energetic and quite loud. So, even if you can keep your dog well-exercised at home, your neighbors will be extremely frustrated with the situation.

7. Do Patterdale terriers bark a lot?

Sadly, they do. Proper anti-bark training is a must for these dogs, especially in apartments. And, even then you can expect them to yap and whine quite a bit every day – they are just a very talkative breed.

8. Are Patterdale terriers smart?

Patterdale terriers are a highly intelligent breed but you may find that this is not always a benefit. That’s because these dogs are also quite independent and stubborn. Much like cats, they will often understand exactly what you want from them and refuse to do it anyway.

9. Can a Patterdale terrier be left home alone?

Separation anxiety is a big issue for these dogs as is the case with any other highly intelligent and very affectionate and social breed. Working away from home can be a problem with these dogs unless there’s another family member at home to keep them company. (or a dog walker, dog sitter, friend, or a playdate at a fellow dog owner).

10. Are Patterdale terriers easy to train?

Not really. While they are smart, their independent streak means that they will often prefer to do things their own way. Needless to say, good obedience training is a must with such a breed.

11. Are Patterdale terriers calm or hyperactive?

Both. Patterdale terriers are very hyperactive when they haven’t gotten some exercise and playtime in a while. At the same time, they are not an overly jumpy and fearful breed once they are properly exercised.

12. Is the Patterdale terrier a social and friendly breed?

Very much so. These terriers love having as many people around them as possible, including friends and strangers. Of course, that’s only the case if they’ve been socialized properly but that’s necessary for every breed.

13. Does the Patterdale terrier get along with kids?

Yes, these dogs are great companions for kids. Both the dog and the child have to be taught the safety basics, of course, but after that everything should be fine.

14. Do Patterdale terriers tolerate other dogs?

Patterdales don’t have any inherent aggression toward or instinct for dominance over other dogs. So, with good socialization, they will happily have other canine family members. In fact, that’s a good way to alleviate their separation anxiety.

15. Can a Patterdale terrier live with cats?

Cats, hamsters, birds, and other small non-canine pets are usually not a good idea with terrier breeds. Hunting small prey is exactly what these dogs have been bred to do for centuries. If the dog has been raised with cats and has been socialized and trained expertly, there shouldn’t be a problem. But in 99% of cases, you wouldn’t want a feline in the home of a terrier.

16. Are Patterdale terriers rare?

Patterdale terriers are curiously absent in all breed popularity rankings we’ve checked. Then again, such rankings typically miss dozens and hundreds of purebred dogs anyway. Suffice it to say that Patterdale terriers aren’t particularly rare. You can find breeders for them in almost any state/country and they are also not uncommon in dog shelters and rescues.

17. How healthy are Patterdale terriers?

This is a generally healthy and sturdy breed as most reputable breeders do a good job of preventing inbreeding and overbreeding. Still, you should always ask for a health certificate and avoid puppy mills and pet stores at all costs. Still, even with an overall healthy pup, you should still be on the lookout for the following problems:

18. How long does a Patterdale terrier live?

The average expected lifespan of this breed is 11 to 14 years. Healthy and lucky pups can surpass that by quite a lot, however.

19. Do Patterdale terriers shed a lot?

These dogs are “moderate shedders”. However, if they get dry skin or get stressed, you can expect quite a lot of extra hair in the air.

20. What type and color coat does the Patterdale terrier have?

These dogs have either a short and smooth coat or a longer and rough one or a “broken”, i.e. a coarse coat. The standard colors of the breed include black, brown, red, and pied. Patterdales with long coats are double-coated.

21. Are Patterdale terriers hypoallergenic?

Not at all – Patterdales are not recommended for people with dog allergies.

22. Should you shave a Patterdale terrier?

Double-coated shouldn’t be shaved as they need their undercoat for thermal isolation. They can be trimmed, however. Dogs with no undercoat can be shaved although a simple trimming is usually still the better idea.

23. Would you need a professional groomer for a Patterdale terrier?

Patterdales tend to shed a lot but they are also fairly easy to groom so you should be able to do this on your own. At the same time, good professional groomers can be a great help and are very thorough and effective at what they do. Just make sure to get your pet used to the professional grooming experience early on.

24. How much do Patterdale terrier puppies cost?

Purebred Patterdale terrier puppies are fortunately quite affordable as you can find them for somewhere between $700 and $1,000 with most breeders. Puppy mills and pet stores offer even lower prices but much more sickly animals. You can also check your local shelters as these dogs can often be found there too.

25. Do Patterdale terriers drool?

You probably didn’t expect a breed like the Patterdale to drool but they often do. They are not the biggest droolers, of course, so don’t expect Newfoundland's level of drooling. Still, some drooling before mealtime, under stress, or during heat, or when the dog is excited is to be expected.

At the same time, excess drooling can also be a symptom of some health issues such as stomach problems, poisoning, throat obstructions, dental problems, fever, and others.

Simply put, Patterdale terriers are a very well-rounded breed that encompasses a lot of characteristics we love in dogs. They are small but highly energetic, playful, and healthy. They are both small and social, and they also get along with both kids and other dogs.

They do have some peculiarities, of course. The barking and hyperactivity make them ill-suited for apartments. The drooling and shedding can also annoy some owners while the tendency for separation anxiety requires a good work/life balance. Lastly, the stubbornness of this breed means that any Patterdale terrier owner needs to be quite experienced and knowledgeable when it comes to dealing with dogs.

If you’re up to those few challenges and you want an energetic, smart, and playful terrier for your family, the Patterdale terrier is a great choice.