Chilean Fox Terrier

9-15 lbs
Ratonero, Chilean Rat Terrier

The Chilean Fox Terrier is a lively, active small dog achieved by crossing the British Fox Terrier with Chilean dogs. This attractive Terrier is less than 200 years old, but it's ancestors can be traced back to an older lineage who are thought to have existed since Roman times. The Chilean Fox Terrier is a popular companion dog and is less aggressive than other Terriers. They are extremely loyal to their owners, forming very strong bonds with their family. While they do get on well with children, they are not fond of rough play so young children should be taught to respect the little dog and play gently to avoid problems. They can be aggressive with other dogs of the same sex, although care socialising when young and mixing with other dogs early in life will help to avoid aggressive situations. The Chilean Fox Terrier makes a great watchdog although they lack the size and aggression to be effective guard dogs. They are attractive in appearance, with a short easy to maintain coat that is white, with black and tan patches. The hair is short and neat, giving this dog a well groomed appearance. Their finely shaped faces, alert expression and devoted loyalty makes the Chilean Fox Terrier a good family choice of dog and one that is adaptable to country or town living.

purpose Purpose
Hunting, Companion, Watchdog
history Date of Origin
19th Century
ancestry Ancestry
British Fox Terriers, Native Chilean dogs

Chilean Fox Terrier Health

Average Size
Male Chilean Fox Terrier size stats
Height: 13-15 inches Weight: 11-18 lbs
Female Chilean Fox Terrier size stats
Height: 11-14 inches Weight: 9-15 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Patellar Luxation
Minor Concerns
  • Cataract
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Von Willebrand's Disease
  • Deafness
  • Pulmonic Stenosis
Occasional Tests
  • Urinalysis
  • Blood Tests
  • Buccal Mucosal Screening
  • Complete Ophthalmologic Examination
  • Biochemical Profile Tests
  • Hearing and Ear Tests
  • X-rays or other radiographic imaging

Chilean Fox Terrier Breed History

The  Chilean Fox Terrier is said to have developed during the 19th Century, by crossing the British Fox Terrier with native Chilean dogs. The introduction of the Fox Terrier to Chile is not clear but may have been the result of Chilean students studying at British Schools bringing the Terrier back to their home country, or British traders operating in Chile. A few English and Irish immigrants who brought their dogs with them to their new homeland would have attributed to the Chilean Fox Terrier development. The first of the Fox Terriers were limited to the country's major sea ports, but they quickly spread from there. Chileans quickly discovered that the Terrier was very good at hunting down and dispatching rats and other vermin. The small size and agility of the dog, combined with their speed and tenacity proved they were suitable for the country and that they were a valuable addition. Having a Fox Terrier on the farm prevented monetary loss and starvation from agricultural pests, and in cities, they helped prevent the spread of disease brought in by the vermin. The problem was that there were not enough of the Fox Terrier, so they were crossed extensively with the local Chilean dogs. This process resulted in a dog that became highly skilled in eradicating vermin. While still similar in appearance to the Fox Terrier, the  Chilean Fox Terrier has a slightly smaller face, they are smaller in size, and they have a more limited coloring. But they are better adapted to Chile's incredibly varied environment because of the genetic addition of the local Chilean dogs. Efforts to standardize the breed began in the 1990's but increased dramatically in 2004 when a group of breeders and owners began to work with the Association of Chilean Dog Breeders and Exhibitors to earn full recognition. Work continues to achieve recognition by the Chilean Kennel Club, and their future seems quite secure for this amazingly adaptable and hard working, adorable companion dog.

Chilean Fox Terrier Breed Appearance

The Chilean Fox Terrier is a small to medium sized dog that has a close fitting white coat with black and tan patches over their body and head. They are known for their fine athletic build, with long slender legs and small well padded paws. Built for speed, they have plenty of energy to burn and are always actively doing something! Their body is well proportioned, with a long neck that supports their head. The head is triangular with a narrow pointed muzzle, and the teeth meet in a fine bite.Their lips are tight, making it a dog that rarely drools. A black nose with large nostrils allows them to catch a scent, and they can be 'chasers', in other words - they may just take off after a fast moving small animal. Therefore it is important to keep them on a leash when out walking, just in case instinct kicks in and your dog wants to indulge in the chase. The ears of the Chilean Fox Terrier are triangular and are held high and erect, with the pointed tops often flopping over. These dogs are often born without a tail, but they can grow a short tail length over the growing years.  Large round eyes in a warm brown hue plus a cute face that always seems to be smiling give this dog a very expressive stance, one that endears them greatly to their owners.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Chilean Fox Terrier eyes
amber Chilean Fox Terrier eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Chilean Fox Terrier nose
Coat Color Possibilities
pied Chilean Fox Terrier coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Chilean Fox Terrier straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Chilean Fox Terrier Breed Maintenance

The Chilean Fox Terrier is very easy to maintain. Their coat is short and close fitting and usually white with patches of black and tan. They do have a grey undercoat which lets some dark spots show on the white over coat. Keeping their coat clean requires little maintenance; a rub down with a cloth will get rid of most dirt, and brushing once a week will keep the coat in good condition. Bathing is on an 'as needs' basis; in other words -  when your dog has gone through deep mud or rolled in something unpleasant (and they will - given the opportunity). It is recommended to use special dog shampoos or soaps as this will protect the natural oils in the coat, keeping it healthy. Human products are too harsh on a dog's coat and skin. Other maintenance considerations are the teeth (clean them regularly and check for problems), ears (check for infection and wipe out gently occasionally), and trim their nails so that they won't be 'clicking' around the house as they walk. Apart from this regular practice, they are good to go and burn off some of that energy that the Chilean Fox Terrier has in abundance.

Brushes for Chilean Fox Terrier
Pin Brush
Pin Brush
Slicker Brush
Slicker Brush
Nail Clipper
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Chilean Fox Terrier requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Chilean Fox Terrier Temperament

The  Chilean Fox Terrier is a very compact, well balanced dog with an elegant appearance. They are known for their gentleness, alertness and their lively personality. Devoted and loyal, they will warn of strangers but lack the size or the aggression to do much about them. They bond closely with their family and make excellent companions. Their mischievous nature will have the whole family in stitches, laughing at their antics! Raised with children, they will be gentle and affectionate with them. They do have strong hunting instincts so they can be aggressive towards other animals, and should not be kept with other pets unless trained to be well behaved with them. The  Chilean Fox Terrier can be aggressive with other dogs of the same sex. Because of this tendency, socialising at a very early age and training your Chilean Fox Terrier become very important. Many of their natural instincts can be overcome with proper training and socialising so that they know how to act and behave amongst other animals. They are curious and will investigate any new toy to see how it ticks. It is important to give this active dog plenty to do. Combine training, walks, games, and social outings with affection and praise, and this little dog will be a well balanced, mellow dog that you can be proud to take anywhere.

Chilean Fox Terrier Activity Requirements

Like most of the Terrier breed, the  Chilean Fox Terrier has a ton of energy and loves to be involved with their family for outings or games. They will happily go jogging with you but need to be kept on a leash, as they are prone to chasing smaller fast moving animals. Their small size means that they don't need a big area to run around in, but they do need some space where they can patrol and pretend they are hunting rodents! The Chilean Fox Terrier will adapt well to apartment living as long as they have at least one good walk each day. They can be quite opinionated (meaning they can bark a lot if not properly trained) so keep that in mind if you are considering the apartment option. These little turbo machines are good playmates for children, as long as the children are not too rough. Games with a ball, tugging, or finding treats are fun while racing in and out of a spraying water hose on a hot day will be hilarious for the dog and the family. Highly intelligent, the  Chilean Fox Terrier is eager to please, a little bit stubborn, quite highly strung but not aggressive to people. They are charming dogs for an active owner and family.

Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
14 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
60 minutes
activity minutes

Chilean Fox Terrier Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1.5 cups
cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$1.20 - $1.40
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$30.00 - $40.00
food bag monthly cost

Chilean Fox Terrier Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Chilean Fox Terrier size stats at six months
Height: 4.5 inches Weight: 5.5 lbs
Female Chilean Fox Terrier size stats at six months
Height: 4.5 inches Weight: 4.5 lbs
12 Months
Male Chilean Fox Terrier size stats at 12 months
Height: 15.5 inches Weight: 14.5 lbs
Female Chilean Fox Terrier size stats at 12 months
Height: 12.0 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Chilean Fox Terrier size stats at 18 months
Height: 17.5 inches Weight: 17.5 lbs
Female Chilean Fox Terrier size stats at 18 months
Height: 14.5 inches Weight: 14.5 lbs

Chilean Fox Terrier Owner Experiences

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