The Breed Standard


Working role: To hunt ground vermin, going to ground when required, but to act as an all purpose sporting dog. 

General appearance: A small, sturdy, short smooth coated, compact but free moving, well boned, strong jawed working terrier with a bright fiery red tan coat, accompanied by white on legs and collar, usually with a docked tail, should appear bold but not aggressive.

Honourable scars permissible.


Characteristics: Bright, alert, determined, self-confident, lively, bustling, sharp-eyed, spirited, keen to hunt, fearless, but not hyperactive, independent-minded yet responsive to training and commands.

Temperament: Bold but friendly by nature; extrovert, not prone to give tongue without good reason; not immediately welcoming with strangers but not immediately submissive either.

Aptitude: Willing to hunt ground vermin, above and below ground, perseveres in difficult working conditions, displays no hesitation in tackling ground quarry, without being too hard or oblivious to instruction. Has an offensive approach without ever being out of control.

Construction: Must have the anatomy of a working terrier: a flexible spine, a powerful jaw, sturdy legs, strong but never heavy bone, ample chest room without too much ‘spread' in front, must be able span behind the shoulders by the average persons hand, sound compact feet with well-formed pads and strong toe-nails.

Forefront: The head is strongly-made, broad with good width between the ears and a well defined ‘stop'; strongly jawed the muzzle length measures roughly two-thirds the distance from the occiput or peak to the stop, giving a strong, tapering jaw, still broad at the nose: the jaws close in scissor bite, with equally strong in upper and lower jaw. The skull size is in proportion to the dogs size, the ears are set high, well apart, neat and V-shaped, but with slightly rounded tips, carried close to the head, dropping forward even when the dog is alert deep-set and fairly wide apart, the eyes are almond shaped, dark brown with an alert watchful expression, the lips are tight, with dark pigmentation. The neck is strongly made, of good length, slightly arched, blending well into the shoulder construction.

Forehand: The shoulder blades and upper arm are of sufficient length and angle to permit a free front stride with good extension and ample reach of neck; the elbows fit closely but allow free forward movement. The forelegs should be straight when viewed from the front, not over-boned but discernibly muscled. The forefeet are small and compact but still good-sized, round, with strong robust pads, sturdy toes and strong nails. 

Torso: The chest is narrow whilst retaining breadth, with well-sprung ribs carried well back. In profile the dog is oblong but not excessively so, the distance from the point of shoulder to hip not greatly exceeding the shoulder height of the dog. The top line is level; the body length indicating symmetry and balance, based on a lower station. The loins are supple and strong. Great flexibility in the body is desirable; the underline shows a very slight tuck up.

Hindhand: The tail is set level with the topline, which slopes very slightly downwards at the croup; the tail is carried high but not set too high, pelvic angulation, turn of stifle and angulation at the hock must allow good forward reach when working underground and ample rear extension when on the move, the hind legs are straight when seen from behind. The hindfeet are small, round and compact, with strong, tough pads, toes and nails. The tail is normally docked to just less than four inches. Undocked of moderate length giving a general appearance of balance to the dog, set fairly high, carried up when the dog is on the move.

Movement: Purposeful with a low drive and a good stride, fore and aft, indicating well-laid shoulders and correctly constructed hindquarters. The style is brisk, full of enthusiasm; the whole impression is one of perky assertiveness, supple strength and physical harmony.

Coat: Colour; the bright fiery copper red coat is a feature of breed type and must be present. This breed feature ideally consists of a rich red copper; full cape from head to tail or a white collar, there must be no more than 15% white on the back, white leg markings are permissible. The head is preferred in solid red tan but a white blaze, or badger marking is acceptable.

Texture: Short, dense, close-lying but resistant to the hand when reverse stroked; guard hairs are not desired; any looseness or untidiness of coat is not desired.

Dimension: Height at the withers: dog's 34cm(13inches) bitches 31cm(12 inches) but 2.5 cm 1 inch) above or below is acceptable.

Weight is to be consistent with size.

Male animals must have two apparently normal testes fully descended into the scrotum

Faults: Any departure from the foregone points should be considered a fault, and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and it's effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.

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