Photo by © Dave Horowitz

Manchester Terrier - Breed Profile:

Origin: England
Size: Small
Type of Owner:
Exercise: Moderate
Grooming: Little
Trainability: Slightly difficult to train
Combativeness: Friendly with other dogs
Dominance: Moderate
Noise: Average barker

Physical characteristics

The Manchester Terrier is an agile dog with a compact body and a long wedge-shaped head. The skull and the muzzle are approximately the same length. The muzzle has no visible cheek muscles. The chest is deep and narrow. The abdomen is tucked up extending in an arched line from the deep brisket. The back is slightly arched, which reveals the breed's Whippet heritage. The small almond-shaped eyes are almost black in colour; they are bright, and sparkling. The nose is black. The teeth should form a scissor bite. The relatively large ears are V-shaped. In the Standard variety, they are naturally erect, cropped, or so called "button ears" (when the ear flap lies close to the head and points toward the eye). In the Toy variety, the ear must be naturally erect. The moderately short tail tapers to a fine point. The gait is free and effortless.
The weight of the Toy variety should not exceed 12 pounds. The weight of the Standard variety should be 12 to 22 pounds with the height averaging 17 inches.


Very active, clean and smart, Manchester Terriers make really good friends to their masters. Can be headstrong, protective, and snappish. These dogs should be thoroughly socialized as a puppy to prevent possible aggression and other behaviour issues. Consistent and firm training is also very important. Make sure you become a good pack leader, otherwise this high-spirited and independent dog will claim the leading position with all the ensuing consequences. Without a sufficient amount of physical exercise and mental stimulation, Manchester Terriers can get upset when left alone, become hyper-active, destructive, snappish, possessive, etc. Well-balanced dogs are usually good with other canines. Good watchdogs. Don't let the dog off leash except in a well-fenced secure area, as it likes to chase. This breed is a good, easy care companion for elderly people.

Coat and grooming

The coat of Manchester Terriers is short, shiny, smooth and dense. It is very easy to take care of: little grooming is necessary. Toy Manchester Terriers shed little to no hair, while the Standard variety is an average shedder. The only coat colours acceptable in the breed are jet black and rich mahogany tan. The two colours should not run or blend into each other.


Some individuals can be prone to blood problems and glaucoma. A bleeding disorder called Von Willebrand's disease can also be a problem, but this is rare and wounds heal quickly. Don't leave the dog in the sun for too long periods of time as it is prone to heat bumps.

Other interesting facts

The Manchester Terrier is one of the oldest known terrier breeds. It was developed as a rat hunter in Manchester in 19th century. The breed is considered the best vermin hunting dog.