Smooth Fox Terrier


A small Smooth Fox Terrier
Smooth Fox Terrier Quick Summary
Also Known As
Height (at withers)14-16in (35.5-41cm)
Weight15-20lbs (7-9kg)
Hair Colour(s)White with markings
Lifespan12-14 years
Energy LevelHigh
Litter size3-6
Barking TendencyHigh
Exercise requirementsMedium
Ease of trainingMedium
Suitability for kidsLow
Animal compatabilityLow
Aggression levelsHigh
Distress if leftMedium

The Smooth Fox Terrier is a small but well built dog. The body is muscular with a deep chest, a level topline, a short and straight back, straight legs and a high set tail that is carried erect. The narrow head has a tapering muzzle, forward folding ears and dark round eyes that are deep set. The coat is short, sleek and close fitting, and the colouring tends to be white with black and tan markings.


Smooth Fox Terriers are bold and inquisitive little dogs with plenty of energy and character. They are extremely affectionate and thrive on play and physical interaction, but they can be openly jealous too, and if not given adequate attention can display their temperamental moods by being impulsive and scrappy. These dogs also like to bark and dig. However, with proper training, plenty of interaction and early socialisation, they make entertaining companions and family pets. They are intelligent but can be stubborn, independent, and mischevious too, and so are best suited to those with some experience of dog ownership and training rather than novices. Smooth Fox Terriers are only suited to older, more considerate children because although playful, they do not appreciate being treated roughly or pestered and have been known to bite. They are very possessive towards food and belongings and can be bossy and competitive with other similar-sized dogs, and may even initiate aggressive behaviour. They will tend to chase smaller animals including cats unless raised with them. Their reaction to strangers willl vary from polite to reserved and even wary. Together with their excellent eyesight and bark, this makes them effective watchdogs.

History & Skills

Smooth Fox Terriers originate from England, where they were used for fox hunting, specifically to bolt them from their dens by growling and using harassing gestures. Also making effective ratters, they were bred in the middle 1800s and were paired with Wire Fox Terriers until very recently being recognised as a separate group. These days they tend to make good companions, family pets and watch dogs.

Breed Specific Ailments

Smooth Fox Terriers tend to live between 12-14 years, and some of the health problems noted in this breed, include heart problems, Legg-Perthes, thyroid problems, luxating patella, digestive problems, seizures, post nasal drip, lens luxation, distichiasis, cataracts, and shoulder dislocation. The predominantly white dogs can be prone to deafness.


Smooth Fox Terriers are are medium shedders, and so are not best suited to allergy sufferers. They require minimal grooming, and the coat will simply need occasional brushing to keep it looking sleek and in good condition. They can be bathed if and when required.

Exercise & Environment

Smooth Fox Terriers tend to live indoors and are suitable for smaller homes, such as apartments. They will need a daily walk, and if possible, access to a secure yard or garden for play and exercise. They will prefer the chance to run free whenever possible, but should only be allowed to do so as long as the area in question is safe and away from roads, as they are very fast and love to chase.


FCIFCI - Federation Cynologique Internationale
KCThe Kennel Club (UK)
AKCAKC - American Kennel Club

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