Irish Saint Terrier

Home > Dog Breeds > Irish Saint Terrier
80-100 lbs
United States
Irish Terrier
Saint Bernard

The Irish Saint Terrier is a hybrid breed who is a mixture of the Irish Terrier and the Saint Bernard. Both parent breeds are great watchdogs; they are vigilant in protecting both their family and their territory. The Irish Terrier has a reputation for not getting along with other dogs and may pass this trait along. The Saint Bernard is highly recognizable due to movies such as Beethoven, but it is important to remember that the this canine is a giant-sized breed, and, much like the lead character, has a propensity for clumsiness. While the Irish Saint Terrier will not be the exact size of the Saint Bernard, he will still be a large size dog. He is likely to be sweet, but very protective.

Companion, Watchdog
Date of Origin
Irish Terrier and Saint Bernard

Irish Saint Terrier Health

Average Size
Male Irish Saint Terrier size stats
Height: 20-25 inches Weight: 90-120 lbs
Female Irish Saint Terrier size stats
Height: 20-22 inches Weight: 80-100 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Entropion
  • Gastric Torsion
  • Elbow Dysplasia
  • Allergies
  • Hip Dysplasia
Minor Concerns
  • None Known
Occasional Diagnoses
  • None Known
Occasional Tests
  • X-Rays
  • CT Scan
  • Eye Examination
  • Physical Examination

Irish Saint Terrier Breed History

The origins of the Irish Saint Terrier are not totally known. In order to understand the history of the Irish Saint Terrier, perhaps a look at his parent breeds will shed some light on the history of the hybrid breed. The Irish Terrier is likely one of the oldest of the Terrier breeds. He can trace his roots back to Scotland, and is thought to be the result of the breeding of a Black and Tan Terrier (a breed that is now extinct) and a larger wheaten-colored Terrier. In the 1880s, the Irish Terrier was one of the most popular breeds in the British Isles. It was brought to America, where the breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1885. During World War I, the Irish Terrier was used as a messenger dog. Over time, the breed has decreased in popularity. The Saint Bernard is a gentle giant who was bred for the cold weather of the Alps. Experts believe that the breed was created when native dogs (to Switzerland) were interbred with Mastiff-type dogs brought to the area by Romans. The dogs were first mentioned in the records of a monastery in 1703. It is believed the dogs were watchdogs of the monastery grounds. The dog has been associated with the search and rescue of lost travellers near what is now the Saint Bernard’s pass, and this reputation has stuck with the Saint Bernard dog. He has the physical characteristics which make him ideal for harsh winters and tough rescue missions in the mountains. In fact, monastery records credit the Saint Bernard with the rescue of at least 2,000 travellers. Over time, the breed made its way to England, where, in 1833, a man named Daniel Wilson suggested that the breed be called the Saint Bernard. 1883 also saw the Saint Bernard make its way to the United States, where Plinlimmon, a Saint Bernard owned by an actor, became a top show dog. The dog became highly popular in the United States, and is still a favorite breed today.

Irish Saint Terrier Breed Appearance

The Irish Saint Terrier will be a large dog, and his color will be dependent upon the dominant parent breed. Most Saint Bernards are white with dark patches; however, some have more red than white in their coats, and so, the Irish Saint Terrier may have more red in his coat as well. There are two different coat types for Saint Bernards – a shorter coat that is smooth yet dense, and a longer coat that is slightly wavy. This will also determine the appearance of the Irish Saint Terrier. The Irish Terrier parent has a double coat which helps to protect them from various weather conditions. His hair is dense and wiry, yet it grows so closely together that you can’t see his skin underneath. He may be a variety of colors: red, golden red, red wheaten, or plain wheaten. Your Irish Saint Terrier should be quite unique in his appearance, all dependent upon the dominant parent breed.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Irish Saint Terrier eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Irish Saint Terrier nose
Coat Color Possibilities
fawn Irish Saint Terrier coat
white Irish Saint Terrier coat
red Irish Saint Terrier coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Irish Saint Terrier wavy coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Irish Saint Terrier Breed Maintenance

The Irish Saint Terrier does have a tendency to shed, so he may require a good bit of maintenance. He should be brushed daily with a wire-bristle brush. Take extra care during shedding season, when he may “blow” his coat (a trait he may inherit from the Saint Bernard parent breed).  Bathe him only when necessary. You should brush your Irish Saint Terrier’s teeth at least three times a week; however, if you want to prevent gum disease, brush the dog’s teeth daily. Check his ears periodically to make sure that they are clean and free of moisture. He'll have strong nails; cutting them regularly will keep him comfortable and also make the job easier for you.

Brushes for Irish Saint Terrier
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
Irish Saint Terrier requires daily brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Irish Saint Terrier Temperament

The Irish Saint Terrier will likely be a mixture of the personalities of his parent breeds. The Irish Terrier parent is not always known for getting along with other dogs. He is highly protective of his family, and tolerates strangers. He is a good watchdog, and he will bark. The same can be said for the Saint Bernard, who is not known to bark without good reason. Because of these traits, the Irish Saint Terrier makes a good watchdog. The Irish Saint Terrier is normally good-natured and adaptable; however, he can also be curious and sometimes reckless. Additionally, he has a propensity for clumsiness and is sometimes ill-advised for a family with young children as he can inadvertently knock them down as he moves his large body around. However, he loves his family and would never hurt any of them intentionally. He is highly intelligent and easily trainable although can sometimes have a stubborn streak. Consistent training with positive reinforcement should take care of that.

Irish Saint Terrier Activity Requirements

The Irish Saint Terrier is a fairly active dog. He loves to play and will need daily exercise. This can come in the form of outdoor play in a fenced-in yard or brisk walks with the owner. He might also enjoy a trip to the dog park where he can interact with other canines and run off energy at the same time. Exercise is important for the Irish Saint Terrier, not just for his happiness, but also to prevent weight gain. A home with a secure yard in which to play is ideal; he can adapt to an apartment but will need plenty of outdoor time to be at his happiest.

Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
10 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
45 minutes

Irish Saint Terrier Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
4 cups
Daily Cost
$2.8 - $3
Monthly Cost
$80 - $90

Irish Saint Terrier Owner Experiences

Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd