Manchester Terrier

7-22 lbs
Black and Tan Terrier, English Toy Terrier (toy)

The Manchester Terrier developed in response to the increasingly poor sanitation in England as the result of the Industrial Revolution and population growth.  Smaller, spunkier dogs like Terriers were needed to help cull the growing rat populations.  The Manchester Terrier arose from breeding a Whippet with a crossbred terrier to produce an enthusiastic and courageous hunting companion.  Today, the Manchester Terrier continues to thrive as an earth dog and excellent companion.  This breed is active and social but needs firm training to subdue his headstrong perception that he’s the boss.  Daily exercise is a must with a Manchester Terrier, but their coats are low maintenance. 

purpose Purpose
ratting, coursing
history Date of Origin
ancestry Ancestry

Manchester Terrier Health

Sketch of Manchester Terrier
Average Size
Male Manchester Terrier size stats
Height: 10-22 inches Weight: 7-22 lbs
Female Manchester Terrier size stats
Height: 10-22 inches Weight: 7-22 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Lens Luxation
  • Hydrocephalus
Minor Concerns
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Von Willebrand's Disease
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease
Occasional Tests
  • Eye
  • Dna For Vwd
  • Thyroid Tests
  • X-Rays
  • Physical Examination

Manchester Terrier Breed History

The Manchester Terrier, as its name implies, is of the Terrier family and was developed in Manchester, England.  In the early 19th-century sanitation conditions in the cities were abominable, and rats flourished in the streets.  Rats are a constant source of disease and poor quality of life, and the rat terrier breeds worked to rid the cities of the rodent population.  The Manchester Terrier rose from the experimental breeding of a Whippet and a cross-bred terrier to produce a new, energetic ratting dog.  The new breed was very successful and by the mid-19th century Manchester, England was well known for its “Rat Terrier”, thus earning the breed’s name, the Manchester Terrier. Manchester Terriers were also excellent hunting companions for hare and rabbit coursing.  The smaller dogs were often carried in special leather pouches during the hunt and referred to as the “Groom’s Pocket Piece.” When the larger hounds were unable to penetrate thick brush, the Manchester Terrier courageously and spiritedly charged in after its quarry.  The Manchester Terrier’s usefulness as an earth dog for fox and hare hunts earned him the nickname, the “Gentlemen’s Terrier.”  By 1886, the Toy Manchester Terrier was recognized by the American Kennel Club, and the following year the Standard Manchester Terrier earned AKC recognition. The two variations of Manchester Terriers continued as separate breeds until 1959 when the two were combined.  Today, high-spirited, full of energy Manchester Terrier is a much-loved companion as well as an excellent earth dog.  The breed continues to show its usefulness in the field and at home.

Manchester Terrier Breed Appearance

The Manchester Terrier is a small black dog with deep mahogany markings and a tapered tail.  The coat is glossy and dense but not soft to the touch.  The Manchester Terrier is thin-boned and sleek with a long head and bright, keen expression.  The muscular structure is smooth and compact, showing off this breed’s great agility.  Aside from the size and ears, there is no difference between the Standard and Toy varieties of Manchester Terrier. This breed's eyes are nearly black and almond-shaped.  They are set moderately apart and are also slightly slanted.  Standard breed’s ears can stand straight up, be cropped, or buttoned while the Toy breed’s ears stand straight up.  This breed’s muzzle is equally as long as its skull and ends in a well-defined black nose.  The Manchester Terrier’s lips are tight and black with a scissor bite.  Level bites are not as common.  The Manchester Terrier’s forelegs are straight and end in compact, well-arched feet.  The hind legs have strong, well-muscled thighs and the legs are carried well back with feet shaped like those of a cat.  The tail is short and tapers from a thick stem to a point and is carried slightly upward.

Appearance of Manchester Terrier
Eye Color Possibilities
brown Manchester Terrier eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Manchester Terrier nose
Coat Color Possibilities
black Manchester Terrier coat
red Manchester Terrier coat
fawn Manchester Terrier coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Manchester Terrier straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Manchester Terrier Breed Maintenance

The Manchester Terrier is remarkably easy to maintain when it comes to his coat.  The short, dense hair is clean, and dirt particles are easily removed by brushing.  However, this breed will blow their coat twice annually.  Brushing is essential during these times to help remove dead and loose hair.  Bathing your Manchester Terrier is only recommended when he needs a bath and shampoo. The Manchester Terrier’s toe nails will also need clipping up to two times per month if the dog does not naturally wear them down during activity.  In addition to brushing and nail clipping, you should also check your Manchester Terrier's ears once a week for debris or wax.  Speak with your grooming specialist or veterinarian for recommended products and methods for cleaning your dog’s ears.  Being a part of the terrier family, the Manchester Terrier does not have a natural “doggy” smell.  Keeping his coat, ears, and teeth clean will also help keep any unwanted smell from developing.  The Manchester Terrier is a high energy dog who needs a lot of exercise.  However, if given the opportunity to run and play this breed does very well in urban and apartment living.  This breed is almost more tolerant of warm weather than it is of cold weather.  When it comes to feeding the Manchester Terrier, this breed only requires ¼ cup to 1 cup of dry food divided into two meals daily.  The amount of food given to your Manchester Terrier will depend on his metabolism, age, and size.  This breed has a tendency to overindulge so obesity is a real threat.  You should always watch your dog’s weight and make adjustments as necessary.

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

Manchester Terrier Temperament

The Manchester Terrier is a spunky dog with high energy.  This breed needs plenty of exercise and time to root through the brush.  This breed’s nature as a ratting dog does not make it well-suited for living with small pets, such as rabbits and guinea-pigs; however, the Manchester Terrier can live in peace with cats and even large dogs.  The Manchester Terrier has excellent hearing, and when partnered with a large guard dog, such as German Shepard or Doberman Pinscher, this duo makes for an excellent team.  The superior hearing allows the Manchester Terrier to alert the large guard dogs to potential threats.  The Manchester Terrier is affectionate with family but does not tolerate rough play from children or adults.  It’s slighter bones may also become brittle as the Manchester Terrier ages, so rough play is not recommended for this breed.  This breed is more leery of strangers and is fond of its bark.  The Manchester Terrier will bark and be standoffish with strangers until it is certain the person is not a threat. Unfortunately, this breed is not easy to train and can develop a “Napoleon Complex” if it is not firmly taught who the real boss is.  Slightly bossy, this breed requires owners with patience and enough time available to devote to early and frequent training.  Therefore, this breed is not suggested for novice dog owners or people with overly busy lifestyles. Despite the training obstacles one might face with this breed, the Manchester Terrier loves and courageously protects his people.  He is a loyal and loving dog with a lot of energy and heart.

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

Manchester Terrier Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$1.00 - $1.30
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$30.00 - $37.50
food bag monthly cost

Manchester Terrier Height & Weight

6 Months
Sketch of Manchester Terrier at six months
Male Manchester Terrier size stats at six months
Height: 11.5 inches Weight: 8.0 lbs
Female Manchester Terrier size stats at six months
Height: 11.5 inches Weight: 8.0 lbs
12 Months
Sketch of Manchester Terrier at 12 months
Male Manchester Terrier size stats at 12 months
Height: 13.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
Female Manchester Terrier size stats at 12 months
Height: 13.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
18 Months
Sketch of Manchester Terrier at 18 months
Male Manchester Terrier size stats at 18 months
Height: 16.0 inches Weight: 14.5 lbs
Female Manchester Terrier size stats at 18 months
Height: 16.0 inches Weight: 14.5 lbs

Top Manchester Terrier Breeders

Check out who made our list for the most reputable Manchester Terrier breeders of 2023.
Top Manchester Terrier breeder Saint Lazar Manchester Terriers
Saint Lazar Manchester Terriers
Buckhead, Georgia
Top Manchester Terrier breeder Nan Tam Ranch
Nan Tam Ranch
Indiantown, Florida
Top Manchester Terrier breeder Charlin Manchester Terriers
Charlin Manchester Terriers
Falls Church, Virginia
Top Manchester Terrier breeder Toy Manchester Show Dogs
Toy Manchester Show Dogs
Waimea, Hawaii
Top Manchester Terrier breeder Velvet Firefly Kennels
Velvet Firefly Kennels
Clinton, Pennsylvania

Manchester Terrier Owner Experiences

4 Years
2 People
House & Yard
Catch treats
Eating Snacks
He's a great dog. He enjoys to be a solitary pet, meanwhile our other small dogs have more of a pack mentality.
5 years, 9 months ago
6 Years
1 People
Dex is a rescue. He was 5 when I adopted him. He is a lovable little rascal. Unfortunately, he HATES other dogs and I have not made much progress in changing that, so dog parks are not an option for us right now. But he is smart and affectionate and a wonderful companion.
3 years ago
Book me a walkiee?
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