The soft-coated Wheaten Terrier is a medium sized dog that has soft, fluffy fur and is a fun, energetic, and very loving dog. The breed make for excellent family pets, and they have a very gentle nature that is great around children. They are “people” dogs, meaning that they love to be around people, and primarily their family. They are distinctively known for their tuft of hair that grows down the center of their face or muzzle. There are a lot of interesting facts about the soft-coated Wheaten Terrier that many people may not know, so we’ve compiled a list so that you can learn more about the breed. Here are seven things you didn’t know about the Soft-coated Wheaten Terrier.
1. They hail from Ireland
The breed originally comes from Ireland, Emeril Isle, Ireland, to be exact. Of all the things that come from Ireland, it is said that the Wheaten Terrier is the favorite, and it’s no wonder. These are such adorable, loving dogs and those who own a Wheaten, easily fall in love with the breed. The breed was not popular in America until the 1950’s and did not become a registered AKC breed until 1973.
2. Born dark in color
Like many animals when they are born, they are born with different colored fur than what it will be as an adult. Soft-coated Wheaten Terriers are born with dark-colored fur, from very dark brown to maybe shades of black mixed in. Over time, the fur lightens to a golden brown, the shades of wheat from which their name is derived. Owners will see their pup’s fur begin to change once they are over 6 months old, and should be their full, true color by the time they are 12 to 14 months old.
3. Was a poor man’s dog
Wheaten’s were known as a poor man’s dog. The lower class were not allowed to own hound dogs, such as any Spaniels or Beagles and other breeds. This was the law, which is why the lower class adopted the Wheaten’s as their dogs for hunting. This breed was left for the lower class, which is why, ovver time, they were given the name, the “Poorman’s Wolfhound.”
4. Farm dogs and herders
The Wheatens were used as all-around farm dogs and herding dogs. They Were used to work on farms as protectors, hunting vermin, and moving livestock, from herding flocks of sheep and even cattle. The dogs are very loyal and people oriented. They love to be outdoors and working. They’re very intelligent and responsive, which is why they make good farm dogs. Farmers can train them to do just about anything they need them to do around their property.
Wheatons are known to be hypoallergenic, which means that they don’t have the typical two coats, (top coat and under coat), which produces layers of fur to be shed. Of course, every dog produces some dander, so there is always a chance that there could be issues with the dog’s hair, but there is a lesser chance due to less shedding. Despite the label of being “hypoallergenic,” it doesn’t mean there isn’t grooming required. As a matter-of-fact, the Wheaten breed requires a lot of grooming, and should be brushed every day to avoid mats, tangles and knots. It will also help remove any loose hair and reduce the amount of shedding, even more.
6. Need soft training
This is a very sensitive breed and they need to be handled and trained with sensitivity. Soft reprimands are all it takes when training this breed. Consistency and letting him know you are the pack leader is necessary, but raising your voice and being rough with this breed will only get your dog to react the way he is being treated.
7. Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier is a diving champion
A Soft-coated Wheaten Terrier holds the diving championship from last year’s national diving dog competition. The dog’s name is Krista, and she jumped 10 feet and 2 inches into the water. It was an impressive jump, especially since she was competing against other breeds who were trained to dive and swim, like the Retrievers.