Bedlington Terrier Dog Breed


When compared to their relatives (other terrier breeds), Bedlington Terriers are quite a new breed. Their ancestors, the Rothbury (Rodberry) Terriers lived with rough and sometimes considered wicked people.

These dogs were bred and kept by some of the sketchiest characters in Northern England, like the gypsies and local miners

These terriers were used to hunt animals for fur. They are great for hunting vermin, otter, fox, badgers and rabbits.

The pedigrees of Bedlington Terriers dated back to 1782. There are several theories about the origins of the breed. One is that they came from Holland and not from England. This theory is widely dismissed now.

Another theory is that the breed came from Mr. Edward Donkin of Flotterton who owned hunting terriers. However, it was then believed that his dogs were descendants of a gypsy’s, William Allan, terriers.

The breed got its name from Mr. Joseph Ainsley, a mason. He named his dog after the Bedlington mining shire of Northumberland in 1825.

Traits and Behavior

This breed is intelligent, active, and fun-loving, which makes them great as house pets. They love to be the center of attention and would want nothing other than to spend time with their family. They get along well with children and enjoy playing with them. Indoors, tend to be subdued, but when stimulated, they are brave, feisty, and can become aggressive.

Even though they are friendly and welcoming, this breed has a keen judgment of character. This is why they are good guard dogs. When it comes to strangers, they are distant. They bark if someone they don’t know approaches which make them also good as watchdogs.

They are known to be aggressive towards other animals, including pets. Socialization and training should be done in the early years. This breed is born to hunt, they are dominant and brave. If challenged, they would not back down.


Training Bedlington terriers is easy but one needs to be firm and consistent. They are smart and eager to please, but at the same time, they are stubborn, dominant, and willful.

Pet Care and Diseases

The exercise needs of these high energy dogs are easily met. This makes them good as house or apartment pets. Regular playtime and daily walks are sufficient for Bedlington Terriers. They also like fetching, playing with children and jogging. These mild-tempered dogs are quite happy to just stay at home and curl up beside its owner.

This breed’s grooming requirements can be met by an average person, too. Their curly fur needs weekly combing to prevent matting. They also need trimming every two months to maintain that healthy-looking coat.

An owner can learn how to cut a Bedlington terrier’s hair by following the guideline written by the Bedlington Terrier Club of America. Professional grooming can be done, too.

Bedlingtons are a fairly healthy breed. They can live up to sixteen years. However, they are prone to Copper Toxicosis, a hereditary disease.Other health issues include eye problems, thyroid problems, and hepatitis.


Bedlington Terriers are distinct from other terrier breeds. They have long legs, arched backs, and the characteristic woolly coat that makes them look like lambs. Their coat is a combination of hard and soft fur that tends to curl. It is not wiry but crisp to the touch. They come in different colors.  Bedlington terriers may be blue, blue and tan, sandy and tan, and liver and tan. Markings may be on their legs, chest, eyes, tail and hindquarters when they are bi-color.


An ideal Bedlington terrier stands at 16.5 inches with females being smaller. They should weigh around 17 to 23 pounds. They have a long and narrow head with a dense topknot. Their ears are low set and triangular.

They have almond-shaped eyes that vary in color, depending on their coat. Bluecoats have the darkest eyes while sandy coats and the combination of sandy and tan have the lightest shade of hazel eyes. Their noses and lips also vary in color.

Black nose and lip are common with blue and blue-tan coats, while brown is not uncommon in dogs with liver, liver-tan, sandy, and sandy-tan coats.

General Information

This breed has an estimated lifespan of 12-14 years. The average litter size is about 3-6 puppies. The Bedlington Terrier was originally known as the Rothbury or Rodbury Terrier.

Breed Club

Visit these dog club websites dedicated to Bedlington Terrier. Click this link:

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