Airedale Terrier Breed Description and Personality

The Airedale Terrier is a medium-sized dog and the largest of all terriers. They were originally bred to hunt otters and also, in a less aggressive role, to hunt vermin.

The Airedale Terrier, a dog breed, which is also known as the King of Terriers and the Old English Terrier, originated in Yorkshire, England in the district called Airedale.

The Airedale’s History

The Airedale Terrier originated in the 19th century in the Aire River Valley of England. The breed was developed from the Otterhound, the old English Black and Tan Terrier, and the Irish and Welsh Terriers. This resulted in a dog that was used for sporting purposes and for herding cattle to market.

The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1888 and is currently part of the AKC’s Working Group. The Airedale was given its name in the 1800s because it was prized by hunters as a “water dog” capable of retrieving waterfowl from lakes and rivers in the Aire Valley of England.

Are Airedale terriers good family pets?

Airedale’s terriers typically get along well with children and other household pets. They are active dogs, so it’s important for their family to be physically capable of keeping up with them during daily walks and playtime. Airedales also require regular grooming due to their long, thick coat.

Today’s Airedales are still brave, and loyal dogs that make great pets and family companions. They are also known as King of Terriers because of their size.



Airedales are intelligent dogs who love to work and learn new things. They excel in obedience, agility, hunting and tracking trials. Airedales were bred as hunting dogs and still have strong instincts for chasing small animals — especially squirrels!

If you’re looking for a calm lapdog who prefers a pampered life indoors with only occasional walks on leash, this isn’t the dog for you. Airedales need lots of exercise: long walks on leash, romps in safe areas off leash or vigorous games will keep them.

airedale terrier dog


The Airedale Terrier is a low maintenance dog with high energy and endurance. He requires daily exercise and can adapt to almost any living situation. As a hunting dog, the Airedale Terrier has high prey drive, so he should be supervised around other animals.

The Airedale’s thick coat requires brushing at least twice a week to prevent matting. The coat is also water-repellent and sheds dirt easily, so bathing isn’t needed more than once every three months or so.


  • The Airedale Terrier has a double coat that consists of a soft, wiry and dense undercoat that is covered by a hard, straight, flat and coarse outer coat.
  • The coat is usually black and tan on the body, with a lighter tan on the head and chest.
  • This breed’s hair needs to be trimmed about once every two months.
  • During shedding season you will need to brush your pet daily, but during the rest of the year an occasional brushing is all that is needed.
  • In addition, you may want to bathe your dog occasionally with a dog shampoo, but don’t overdo it as it can dry out their skin.


Despite their reputation as tough dogs, Airedales don’t typically have a long lifespan — most live only 10 to 12 years. And as with all purebred dogs, they have some health conditions that are more likely to affect them than other breeds: Hip dysplasia is particularly common among Airedales, and hip dysplasia is also prevalent.

Both of these can cause joint problems later in life. Airedales are also prone to eye issues, including cataracts, glaucoma, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) and cherry eye. Finally, many Airedales develop hypothyroidism during their lifetimes.


The Airedale Terrier’s trainability makes him an excellent choice for a family pet. He is eager to please and if you use positive training methods and reward his progress, he will excel in obedience training. The Airedale can learn quickly, which makes the training process both challenging and rewarding.

The Airedale Terrier is a very intelligent dog and with proper training, he can become a well-mannered canine companion. This breed of dog is quick to grasp commands, and they are great at remembering them too. However, the Airedale Terrier has an independent streak that can be difficult to overcome if you don’t start the training early on.


The Airedale Terrier, when compared to other terrier breeds, has a distinctly longer body, with a weight ranging from 50 to 65 pounds. The breed has a height of 23 inches for males and 22 inches for females.

In addition to its larger size, this breed can be easily identified by its distinct head type, which is long with a flat top. The ears are small and folded over; the chest is broad; and the coat is hard with a dense undercoat.

How much does he shed?

  • Airedales shed very little, but their coat must be brushed and combed occasionally to keep it in good condition and prevent tangles.
  • The hair around his eyes should be trimmed and cleaned regularly.

Why are Airedales not popular?

The truth is, Airedales are not for everyone. They are high-energy dogs who require a lot of daily exercise and mental stimulation. Their hunting instincts may lead to chasing after small animals, which means they’re not the best companion for small pets (cats, rodents). Because Airedales were bred to be independent working dogs, they can be stubborn — training must be consistent and firm.

Airedale terrier price

Airedale terrier price: The average Airedale Terrier price is about $700 for a puppy that has not been registered and about $1,400 for a puppy that has been registered.

This price will vary, however, depending on the gender of the puppy, whether it has been neutered or spayed, its age, and even the breeder you choose to buy the puppy from.


The Airedale Terrier is one of the largest of all terriers and certainly an interesting breed. From its origin in Yorkshire, England, to its performance on the fields of France during World War I, there is plenty about this dog that sounds like something from a storybook.

And though there are some differences between the Airedale and the other popular terriers in its category, it ultimately proved itself as a reliable worker.

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