Manchester Terrier Overview: A Bright, Adventurous Breed

Published March 2, 2021

The Manchester terrier originated in England and was primarily used to control the rat populations. There are two varieties, and the standard-size is often referred to as the English black and tan terrier. A smaller sub-breed was introduced with pointed, erect ears, the Toy Manchester terrier, and recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1958.

Manchester Terrier Breed Overview

The Manchester terrier is a devoted, loyal, and intelligent small breed. There are two varieties. The standard-size and Toy Manchester terrier are registered as varieties of a single breed, but the sizes differ.

Puppy Manchester Terrier

Origin and History

The Manchester terrier goes back to the original English black and tan terrier kept by citizens throughout the sixteenth century. The dogs helped control huge rat populations. This dog breed takes his name from weekly vermin killing contests in Manchester, England, in the 19th century. During this period, the Whippet and Greyhound breeds were introduced into the breeding program, which developed a faster and sleeker appearance.


The Manchester terrier is feisty and ruthless with vermin but gentle with his owners. This terrier is independent and may be reserved with strangers. He may also be challenging to housebreak, and crate training helps teach him to potty outdoors. His attitude is all terrier.

Standard-Size Manchester Terrier Appearance

Grooming is low-maintenance.

  • Coat colors: The breed's coat is available in black and tan.
  • Weight: The Manchester terrier weighs between 11 and 22 pounds.
  • Height: The terrier is between 15 and 16 inches tall.


The Manchester's coat is short, sleek, and glossy. This breed is perfect for pet parents looking for a dog requiring minimal grooming. Try a slicker brush or grooming glove, and once a week is an appropriate brushing schedule.


Pet parents need to throw the ball with this terrier as he loves to fetch. Two long walks a day or runs in the park are also a great way to keep your little breed active.

Manchester Terrier fetching ball

Health Concerns

Manchesters are generally healthy but are prone to some health conditions.

  • Glaucoma
  • Heat bumps
  • Willebrand's disease

Caring For Your Senior Manchester Terrier

All senior dogs need to visit the vet at least twice a year. As pets age, there are many chronic illnesses only discovered with labwork that may occur, and a vet visit is essential to keep your little buddy healthy. Joint pain may also cause discomfort, and pain medication helps active dogs fairly quickly.


This breed lives between 13 and 14 years. The Manchester terrier has a lengthy lifespan for a little dog, and if pet owners work with a vet on a treatment plan, this terrier may live a long and healthy life.

Famous Manchester Terriers

One of the famous rat catchers was a Manchester terrier, Jack Black. He lived and worked in London around the 1850s and was once the Royal rat catcher. During this time, the black and tan terrier was a working dog, used as a ratter, particularly in buildings, to control vermin.

About the Toy Manchester Terrier

The Toy Manchester terrier is also known as the English Toy terrier. A smaller sub-breed with pointed, erect ears, the Toy Manchester terrier was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1958. The only differences between the toy and standard-size varieties are height, weight, and ear carriage.

Toy Manchester Terrier

Toy Manchester Terrier Appearance

The Toy's small, thin, naturally erect ears are never cropped.

  • Coat colors: These are the same as the standard-size and available in black and tan.
  • Weight: The tiny terrier weighs between six and eight pounds.
  • Height: The Toy variety is about 11 inches tall.

Top Manchester Terrier Mixes

If you are interested in a mix, there are many options for Manchester terrier crossbreeds. One of the top mixes may likely be social and high-spirited.

  • Manchester Shepherd: Manchester terrier and German shepherd
  • Manchihuahua - Manchester terrier and Chihuahua
  • Manchund - Manchester terrier and dachshund

Manchester Terriers Were Used to Control Rats

There are two varieties to choose from, and both are lovely pets. The standard-size is also known as the English black and tan terrier. The smaller variety is the Toy Manchester terrier, and it's adorable. Both are active small breeds and need daily walks, a running partner, or games of fetch. This tiny breed is a great companion animal for a family living in a small home or apartment.

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Manchester Terrier Overview: A Bright, Adventurous Breed