The Norfolk Terrier has a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years.
During the 1880s, small ratting terriers were quite popular with students at Cambridge University. One strain in particular was very sought after and was believed to have been developed using Yorkshire and Irish Terrier stock. From this strain, a dog named “Rags” was produced.
Rags was eventually moved to a stable near the town of Norwich where he became known as a skilled ratter. Rags was also a popular sire. Over the course of two decades, he and his offspring were bred with other game terriers with the ultimate goal of creating a small but bold terrier breed. Rags is considered to be the foundation sire of what would eventually become known as the Norwich Terrier.
Early on, the standards for the Norwich Terrier were fairly loose and there was a lot of variety in terms of size, color, coat and ear carriage among the breed. While some Norwich Terriers had prick ears others had drop ears. Eventually, the decision was made to separate the breed into two distinct groups based on ear carriage. The Norwich Terrier would be identified by the prick ear and the Norfolk Terrier would be identified by the drop ear.
The Norfolk Terrier weighs 11 to 12 pounds and measures 9 to 10 inches.
The Norfolk Terrier has a wiry coat and sheds moderately. The Norfolk Terrier just needs to be brushed once a week, bathed as needed and hand stripped twice a year. Like all dogs, the Norfolk Terrier also needs basic grooming. Brush their teeth, clean their ears and trim their nails on a regular basis.
The Norfolk Terrier is agreeable and loyal.
The Norfolk Terrier is a resilient, working terrier with a highly adaptable nature. Neither too hyper nor too docile, the Norfolk Terrier can best be described as balanced and makes a reliable companion. They are affectionate with their loved ones and friendly, if not a little reserved, with strangers. Norfolk Terriers are happiest when spending time with their families and thrive on attention from them.
Like most terrier breeds, the Norfolk Terrier makes an effective watchdog. They are alert and fearless. Norfolk Terriers will not hesitate to go up against much bigger dogs if they feel challenged.
The Norfolk Terrier is willing and eager to please, but has the stubborn streak characteristic of most terrier breeds. The Norfolk Terrier responds best to consistency and firm boundaries as well as lots of praise and treats. Once trained in the basics, the Norfolk Terrier can go on to participate in earthdog trials, tracking and agility.
The Norfolk Terrier loves playtime and is quite energetic. The Norfolk Terrier should have a long daily walk as well as regular time in the yard to run around and play. This breed craves activity and can grow bored and destructive without it.