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Glen of Imaal Terrier

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A Rough & Rugged Terrier

Agile, courageous, mild-mannered

Glen of Imaal Terriers are brave, spirited, and active small dogs. These terriers are usually wary of other dogs, but do great with children if properly socialized as puppies. Glens make great companions for singles, senior citizens, and those who enjoy the outdoors. They don’t bark often and have difficulty swimming. These dogs should be taken on a walk every day and enjoy romping around off-leash in a safe but open area like a large fenced yard. 

Understanding their unique needs will help keep them healthy and create a strong bond between the two of you. Explore this page to learn more about the breed’s history, health concerns, characteristics, and care needs.

Breed Details

Height:12.5-14 in. Weight:Up to 35 lb Lifespan:10-14 years

Size
2

1 = small - 5 = large

Grooming requirements
2

1 = little grooming - 5 = much grooming

Energy level
3

1 = low energy - 5 = high energy

Ease of training
3

1 = difficult - 5 = easy

Affection toward owners
4

1 = independent - 5 = very affectionate

Friendliness toward strangers
3

1 = shy - 5 = very friendly

Routine Care: The Glen of Imaal Terrier is a smart dog with lots of energy, so keep their mind and body active, or they'll get bored. That's when the naughty stuff starts. They have a high prey drive, so they need to be leash walked and a fenced yard is a must.

Grooming: Brush their coat as needed, at least weekly. Twice a year stripping is also required for their double coat.

Dental: Glen of Imaal Terriers generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week!

Ear Care: Clean their ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

The Glen of Imaal Terrier is a brave and powerful hunting dog that shows spirit and tenacity on the hunt. With proper exercise and socialization they make a gentle and relaxed family companion.

Positive Traits:

• Lovable, playful companion

• Quiet—not much of a barker

• Alert, curious, and busy

• Agile, sturdy, and muscular

• Mild-mannered and easy to get along with

• Good with children

Negative Traits:

• Sees cats and small animals as prey unless trained otherwise

• Likes to dig

• Has a tendency to escape, wander, and roam

• Early obedience training and socialization is recommended

• Sensitive by nature, a bit slow to mature

• Needs a lot of activity and mental stimulation to avoid boredom vices

Whether you are considering adding a new Glen of Imaal Terrier to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Glen of Imaal Terrier will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. 

By exploring the health concerns specific to the Glen of Imaal Terrier you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. They are counting on you to be their health expert.

Some health issues a Glen of Imaal Terrier could encounter:

The Glen of Imaal Terrier is an ancient breed that originated in Ireland and was bred to hunt fox and badger. In Ireland they were also trained to be turnspit dogs: they would turn a large wheel that would rotate the roasting meat over a fire. The Glen is a rare breed in the United States. They are known for their bowed front legs and deep bark. They can be silly dogs at home, known to entertain themselves by running in circles. Because the Glen of Imaal Terrier can be independent and strong-willed, they need a strong leader.

Consult with a veterinarian if your Glen of Imaal Terrier shows signs of the following:

• Drinks and urinates more, eats more, potbelly, poor haircoat

• Pale gums, labored breathing, weakness, or sudden collapse

• Toe lumps and toe nail breakage

• Blinking, redness, pain or itchiness around the eyes

• Cloudiness to eye lens

• Increased blinking, extra tears and squinting

• Dilated pupils in daylight, or increased "eye shine" at night

• Excessive licking or chewing, pawing at face and/or ears, head shaking, face rubbing

• General reluctance to run or play

• Fainting, weakness, cough, or shortness of breath during exercise

• Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

• Obsessive licking, nonhealing sore on a paw or leg

• Symmetrical hair loss without itching

• Urine leaking when awake

  • Care

    Routine Care: The Glen of Imaal Terrier is a smart dog with lots of energy, so keep their mind and body active, or they'll get bored. That's when the naughty stuff starts. They have a high prey drive, so they need to be leash walked and a fenced yard is a must.

    Grooming: Brush their coat as needed, at least weekly. Twice a year stripping is also required for their double coat.

    Dental: Glen of Imaal Terriers generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week!

    Ear Care: Clean their ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

  • Characteristics

    The Glen of Imaal Terrier is a brave and powerful hunting dog that shows spirit and tenacity on the hunt. With proper exercise and socialization they make a gentle and relaxed family companion.

    Positive Traits:

    • Lovable, playful companion

    • Quiet—not much of a barker

    • Alert, curious, and busy

    • Agile, sturdy, and muscular

    • Mild-mannered and easy to get along with

    • Good with children

    Negative Traits:

    • Sees cats and small animals as prey unless trained otherwise

    • Likes to dig

    • Has a tendency to escape, wander, and roam

    • Early obedience training and socialization is recommended

    • Sensitive by nature, a bit slow to mature

    • Needs a lot of activity and mental stimulation to avoid boredom vices

  • Health Concerns

    Whether you are considering adding a new Glen of Imaal Terrier to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Glen of Imaal Terrier will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. 

    By exploring the health concerns specific to the Glen of Imaal Terrier you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. They are counting on you to be their health expert.

    Some health issues a Glen of Imaal Terrier could encounter:

  • History

    The Glen of Imaal Terrier is an ancient breed that originated in Ireland and was bred to hunt fox and badger. In Ireland they were also trained to be turnspit dogs: they would turn a large wheel that would rotate the roasting meat over a fire. The Glen is a rare breed in the United States. They are known for their bowed front legs and deep bark. They can be silly dogs at home, known to entertain themselves by running in circles. Because the Glen of Imaal Terrier can be independent and strong-willed, they need a strong leader.

  • Watch Out For

    Consult with a veterinarian if your Glen of Imaal Terrier shows signs of the following:

    • Drinks and urinates more, eats more, potbelly, poor haircoat

    • Pale gums, labored breathing, weakness, or sudden collapse

    • Toe lumps and toe nail breakage

    • Blinking, redness, pain or itchiness around the eyes

    • Cloudiness to eye lens

    • Increased blinking, extra tears and squinting

    • Dilated pupils in daylight, or increased "eye shine" at night

    • Excessive licking or chewing, pawing at face and/or ears, head shaking, face rubbing

    • General reluctance to run or play

    • Fainting, weakness, cough, or shortness of breath during exercise

    • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

    • Obsessive licking, nonhealing sore on a paw or leg

    • Symmetrical hair loss without itching

    • Urine leaking when awake

Glen of Imaal Terrier Discussions

Share your thoughts and experiences, ask questions, or just show your love for the Glen of Imaal Terrier breed here!

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To view the sources for the information listed on this page, see our Dog Breed Guide Reference page.

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