Are Airedale Terriers Hypoallergenic?
Yes! The Airedale Terrier is a large hypoallergenic dog breed that hardly sheds or drools.
The Airedale Terrier is a very interesting, unique dog breed. They are the largest breed in the terrier group. Most hypoallergenic dogs are small or medium sized – so the fact that Airedale Terriers are a large hypoallergenic dog sets them apart from the rest. These dogs are incredibly intelligent and pick up on tricks very quickly! They are also notorious for independent thinking, so they don’t always listen to you, even though they often understand what you want. Grooming can be a bother. The wiry black and brown hypoallergenic coat needs to be regularly brushed and every three months you’ll need to strip it of old fur. Even so, the effort is worthwhile for this goofy, witty, sensitive dog!
For a quick summary of the Airedale Terriers skip to our Airedale Terriers dog breed summary further down the page.
Be sure to click here and meet Spartan the Airedale Terrier! This fun article gives you some great insights into owning an Airedale.
Airedale Terrier Quick Facts
About the Breed
The Airedale Terrier’s Physical Characteristics and Coat
The Airedale Terrier is the largest of all dogs in the Terrier group, which has earned it the nickname “King of Terriers”. These dogs possess a handsome, distinctive silhouette with a flat stop or snout, and a beard.
Their wiry coat is made up of two layers – a course outer hair covers a softer inner layer. This distinctive coat doesn’t shed and needs to be stripped about once every 3-6 months. This breed only appears in the black and tan variety, with a brown body and a black saddle. The dark, soulful eyes of the Airedale are often full of thought and expression.
Airedales may weigh up to about 60 lbs, with females being a bit smaller than males. These dogs rose to popularity in the US some time ago, and even found their way into the white house. Today, however, the Airedale is an uncommon breed to see.
Airedale Terrier Temperament
The Airedale Terrier is best described as a witty, bubbly sort of dog. They love to be clownish and make you laugh, but although they may come across as goofy now and then, they’re quite intelligent. These dogs are always watching, thinking, and learning.
Despite their wits (or maybe because of them), they’re not the most receptive dogs to training. They’ll think about what you’re asking for and decide whether its worth doing. They’re also extremely sensitive, so punishments and reprimands are often counterproductive.
Airedales are very caring. They’re attuned to you and your feelings, and they’ll be there for you when you’re down. However, these dogs aren’t the most cuddly breed. They’re more cat-like in the way they show affection. Like most terriers, these guys have a powerful prey drive. That, combined with their independence, means you often can’t trust them to come back to you if they’re off-leash.
Exercise & Training
Encouraging Good Behavior In Your Airedale Terriers
Airedale Terrier Training Tips – Encouraging Good Behavior In Your Airedale Terrier!
Airedale Terriers are very bright dogs and they catch on to new tricks very quickly. However, they’re also independent thinkers and they won’t repeatedly do tricks just to please you like some other breeds will.
These dogs have a lot of confidence. They’ll think about what you’re asking them to do, and whether or not they agree with it. This means that, if you’re looking for obedience from your Airedale, you will have to be firm and consistent with training.
In addition to being smart, these dogs are also very sensitive and will hold a grudge against a person who administers unjust discipline or is overly critical, so try to encourage good behavior with positive reinforcement.
Training your Airedale to come when you call should start from day one! Try to put yourself in situations where, if you call your terrier and they don’t respond, you’re able to go get them and bring them back to the spot where you issued the command. Once they learn they don’t have to listen and you can’t catch them, they’re sure to take advantage of it!
Airedale Terrier Exercise Needs
Airedale Terriers can be very energetic and endearingly playful. That being said, they may not need as much exercise as you might think. You can often satisfy these guys with a 40-minute daily walk, or two walks for 15 to 20 minutes. You should only let them off leash in fenced in areas because the Airedale’s prey drive is very strong, and no matter how well you think they are trained, they’re likely to get blinders when they see prey – and bolt!
This breed can be pretty content at home even if you skimp on the walks here and there. It’s actually much more important to give them mental challenges! Walking them generally isn’t going to tire them out but thinking and problem solving can be pretty exhausting.
Enrich your Airedale with brief training sessions (about ten minutes each) and by providing toys and challenges. Filling kong toys or cow bones with peanut butter or kong treat paste is a good way to keep them occupied. You can also try hiding from them throughout the house and calling for them – then reward them when they find you. For a challenging toy, make a hole in an empty milk jug, put a cup of kibble in it, and show them that they can roll the jug to make the kibble fall out. Instead of feeding your Airedale terrier in a dog bowl, scatter kibble across a clean tile floor to make mealtimes a fun game.
Grooming and Care
Maintaining Your Airedale Terriers’s Coat
The Airedale coat requires a decent amount of grooming. Their hair is pretty good at trapping mud and other nasties from outside, but it’s best to wait until they’re dry before attempting to brush them off. You will want to use a brush that has stiff bristles. Pay particular attention to the facial area when it comes to grooming – especially the chin. Check out their feet and ankles to make sure there are no burrs or other uncomfortable bits trapped in their fur.
You don’t need to bathe your Airedale as much as you would some other dog breeds. Once every 2-3 months is generally good. However, you will need to routinely remove old hair from their coat. This process is called “stripping”, and there are special stripping knives that you can buy if you want to do it yourself. Otherwise, you can take them to the groomer. In addition to stripping, you’ll need to clip your terrier’s coat and you should do these both about every 3 months. If you suffer from dog allergies, more frequent stripping may help reduce allergic symptoms.
Teeth, Ears and Nails
Brush your Airedale’s teeth at least once a week with an enzymatic toothpaste. They will need to have their nails trimmed about once every three weeks as well. Allowing any dog’s nails to get too long in-between trimming sessions causes their quicks (the living part of the nail that bleeds if you cut it) to get longer, so you won’t be able to cut their nails as short. Check your Airedale’s ears for redness, irritation, wax buildup, or bad smells. You can clean dirty ears with a cotton ball moistened with a solution that’s half white distilled vinegar and half water. Never use q-tips! Take them to the vet if they’re scratching at their ears excessively.
Potential Airedale Terrier Health Issues
Although genetics usually play a role at least in part, a lot of the Airedale’s common health issues can be avoided by providing them with a healthy lifestyle and proper care! Hypothyroidism, bloat, hip dysplasia, and even cataracts, cancer, and Cushing’s Disease are all ailments that are exacerbated by obesity. The Airedale Terrier should be kept lean with a clearly defined waist! Ask your vet if your dog is a healthy weight, and don’t think you’re doing them any favors by giving them extra snacks or overfeeding them. It’s very important to provide plenty of fresh water, especially around meal times, because remaining hydrated is a good defense against most of these health issues.
When choosing a breeder, check for those breeders who have tested the puppy’s parents for hip dysplasia and renal disease at the very least. Other tests that breeders may do for the parents would be eye examinations, autoimmune thyroiditis, and elbow dysplasia. A good breeder should be able to provide you with proof that the puppy you’re buying has the best chance of turning out healthy, without being predisposed to hereditary illnesses. Never, ever buy your Airedale Terrier from a store that sells puppies! These puppies are often bred in puppy mills – factory-like establishments that produce puppies like products and often use inhumane practices!
Airedale Terriers Health Problems
|Hip Dysplasia||Decreased activity
Decreased range of motion
Lameness in the hind end
Looseness in the joint
Specialized Physical Therapy
Maintaining a proper weight
Unexplained weight gain
Hair loss (alopecia)
Excessive hair shedding
|Lifelong oral replacement hormone administered at home by owner||Maintain overall health of the dog with frequent vet visits|
More common in older dogs
|Enlarged abdomen, excessive drooling, vomiting, a weak pulse,and paleness in the nose and mouth.||Gastric Decompression
Note : If your dog is burping or passing gas, they will likely be able to ‘wait it out’. However, inform your vet immediately and be prepared to bring your dog in if their condition changes.
|Causes are unknown, but it is suspected that allowing your dog to eat too much, too fast, drink too much water with their food, and exercise excessively after eating may cause bloat.|
|Cataracts||A bluish, gray, or white layer in the eye.
A sudden reluctance to climb stairs or jump on furniture.
Eye irritation/redness, discharge or blinking.
Rubbing or scratching of the eyes.
|Surgery (often not necessary)||Diabetes is the main cause of cataracts in dogs, so maintain a healthy weight and well-exercised lifestyle for your dog|
More common in older dogs
|Increased thirst, urination, or appetite.
Reduced activity, excessive panting, hair loss, recurrent skin infections, potbelly.
|Maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle for your dog.
Avoid using cortisol-boosting medications unless necessary (ie: prednisone, dexamethasone, prednisolone)
Select your dog from a breeder whose dogs have no recent history of Cushing’s Disease.
|Elbow Dysplasia||Lameness or limping on one or both front legs
Front limb lameness that worsens with activity or exercise
Stiffness when rising from rest
Reluctance to play
Specialized Physical Therapy
Maintaining a proper weight
|Juvenile renal dysplasia (JRD)||Excessive thirst
Excessive volume of urine
Intermittent loss of appetiteIn the final stage :
Death from renal failure
Low protein diets can sometimes help symptoms
|There is not much you can do to prevent this health issue, except to choose a dog from a breeder who has no reported cases of JRD in the dogs they have bred.|
|Cancer||Abnormal swellings/lumps that grow
Sores that do not heal
Loss of appetite
Scratching at swellings/lumps
Abnormal discharge from orifices
|Cancers are often genetic, so be sure to research your dog’s genetic predisposition to different cancers, and choose your dog from a reputable breeder.
Give your dog a fit and active lifestyle; obese dogs are more at risk for cancer.
|Autoimmune hemolytic anemia||Lethargy
Excessively pale gums
Rapid Heart Beat
Bruises on the skin
Black, tarry stools
Blood in the dog’s vomit
|Medications, Chemotherapy Surgery to address underlying issues.
In severe cases, blood transfusions may be given.
|Keep your pet on flea and tick preventatives Always be cautious of using medications long-term. Ask your vet about whether they may cause anemia.
Feed your dog high quality dog food (we recommend Canidae)
Keep your dog fit and active.
Keep your dog away from toxins and chemicals, such as rat poison.
|Allergies||Itchy red, moist, or scabbed skin
Itchy, runny eyes
Scratching at the back or base of tail (Often from fleas)
Chewing excessively on feet (often a food allergy)
Benadryl (ask your vet before administering and do not use as a long-term or permanent solution as it can irritate the stomach lining)
If your dog responds severely to an allergy (swollen tongue, difficulty breathing, falling asleep while standing)
|Allergy panels can be performed to try to uncover the cause of a dog’s allergies.
Try switching your dog to a high-quality food. We recommend Canidae.
Wipe your dog’s paws and belly after playing outside.
Bathe your dog with anti-itch dog shampoo.
Keep chemicals, smoke, and other irritable inhalants at a minimum.
Lack of appetite
Increased frequency of urination
Dogs with this disease should not be bred.
Unusual head shaking
Muscle twitching and spasms
Loss of consciousness
Panic or confusion
Temporary loss of vision
Recurrences of the symptoms listed above
|This condition is lifelong, but medication can help||Keep your dog away from environmental toxins and chemicals.
Have your dog examined by a vet yearly, and treat any health issues immediately.
Choose a dog from a reputable breeder
|Cerebellar Ataxia||Incoordination, loss of balance, and tremors||Incurable||Inherited|
|Colonic Disease||Frequent bowel movements in little amounts, lots of straining, possible diarrhea||High fiber diet, keep them from eating hard to digest materials like fabric, grass, and bones||Keep them away from sources of infectious microorganisms and parasites|
|*Dogs may show no outward symptoms. Affected dogs may display :
Difficult or rapid breathing
Congestion or “noisy” breathing
Exercise intolerance (reluctance to exercise)
Weakness or lethargy (tiredness)
Gray or blue gums
Abdominal distention (a pot-bellied appearance)
|Often caused by other conditions which are treatable by a veterinarian.
Ie: HeartwormSurgery may be recommended for congenital heart murmurs.
|Purchase your puppy from a reputable breeder.
Always keep your pet on heartworm medication, especially during the summer or in regions where heartworm is common (sometimes year round)
Have your dog’s health checked at least once a year and treat any conditions immediately.
|Malocclusion||Teeth don’t meet correctly||Braces or other devices to fix the over bite||Heriditary|
|Sacraliisation and Lumbalisaion||Discomfort, lameness, or stiffness||Unknown||Unknown|
The Airedale Terrier is a charming dog with a bubbly personality and a great deal of wit! This breed loves to make you laugh with their clownish antics! Known as the King of Terriers, Airedale Terriers are the largest dog in the Terrier group. They have a very strong prey drive and an inclination to be independent thinkers. Airedale Terriers are very sensitive to your emotions, and don’t respond well to punishment and negative reinforcement. Even so, you have to be firm and consistent when you train these dogs, or they’ll soon rule the roost! The Airedale always comes in the same color – brown, with a black saddle. Their wiry coat needs to be brushed regularly to keep it shiny and sleek, but you’ll also need to remove, or “strip” old fur out once every three months.
These dogs have been popular in the past, and for good reason! Their endearing temperament, human-like attitude, and their hypoallergenic non-shedding qualities make Airedales a wonderful addition to the family!
Airedale Terriers Facts Summary
|Other Names?||Bingley Terrier, Waterside Terrier|
|Height (inches and cm)||Female: 22-23 inches (56-59 cm), Male: 23-24 inches (58-61 cm)|
|Weight (pounds and kg)||Female: 40-44 lbs (18-20 kg), Male: 51-64 lbs (23-29 kg)|
|Lifespan||10 – 12 years|
|Temperament||Affectionate, clownish, observant, emotionally receptive, independent|
|Colours||Always tan or brown with a black saddle|
|Coat – describe the coat||Wiry, curly, and short. The coat is double-layered with a softer layer underneath and a coarser layer on top.|
|How much grooming?||Moderate – clip and strip the coat every 3-6 months. Brush them regularly as needed.|
|How much shedding||Non-shedding|
|Saliva – Do they Drool or Lick much?||Low|
|Energy levels||Moderately high|
|How much exercise do they need?||40-minute daily walk|
|Health problems||Allergies, Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia, Bloat, Cataracts
Cancers, Cerebellar ataxia, Colonic Disease, Epilespy
Heart Disease, Hip Dysplasia, Hypothyroidism, Cushings disease,
Addison’s disease, Juvenile renal dysplasia, Malocclusion,
Sacralisation and Lumbalisation
|Good for apartment?||No|
|Suitable for kids?||Yes, they make watchful babysitters when raised with kids.|
|How much do they bark?||Moderate|
|Can they be left alone?||Yes, but they need a moderate amount of attention.|
|How popular as a pet?||Unusual|
|Any other important facts?||During WW1, Airedale terriers were used to keep watch and deliver messages.|
Airedale Terriers FAQ
Are Airedale Terriers good with children?
Yes! These good-humored, intelligent dogs are great playmates and babysitters. However, be sure to socialize them early and teach them proper manners and rules involving how to handle children.
Is the Airedale Terrier hypoallergenic?
Yes! The Airedale Terrier is an unusual hypoallergenic dog because most hypoallergenic dogs are small or medium in size. If you’re looking for a large hypoallergenic dog, these guys are a great choice!
Do Airedale Terriers shed?
No. While all dogs technically shed, Airedale terriers are essentially non-shedding. It’s important to strip their coat every three months though.
Are Airedale Terriers intelligent?
Yes! Airedale Terriers are highly intelligent! They’re very observant, and they learn tricks very quickly. They’re also very independent though, and they often don’t see the point in repeatedly humoring you when you make unrealistic demands like asking them to sit 7 times in a row.
Are Airedale Terriers good apartment dogs?
Technically, not so much. That’s because Airedales are big dogs and do need quite a bit of mental stimulation as well as a moderate amount of exercise, and people who are looking for apartment pups generally require a dog that’s lower maintenance. If you’re willing to put the effort into walking them regularly (about 40 minutes a day) and providing them with plenty of mental stimulation in the form of doggy games, interesting toys, and short training sessions – you could probably make it work. They are perfectly capable of “chilling out” on the couch.
What Are the Airedale Terrier’s Pros and Cons?
Pros : These guys have an endearing goofiness! They’re really charming, interesting dogs to own and they’re sure to keep you amused with their antics. You can expect to have a lot of funny dog stories when you own an Airedale Terrier. They’re also sweet. When properly socialized, they make good pets for kids. They’re sensitive to how you’re feeling, and although they’re playful, they’re also good at relaxing during down time.
Cons : Airedales can be really creative menaces. They’re often more interested in their own agenda than in pleasing you. One YouTuber mentioned that her Airedale Terrier would create a distraction (for instance – getting into the trash) so as to occupy the owner while performing some other misdeed (like stealing a sandwich). You have to be on your toes or your Airedale will rule the roost! Training needs to be firm, gentle, and consistent. These dogs can get pretty expensive if you don’t learn to strip their coats and trim them yourself. You can’t trust an Airedale off-leash, because they have a very powerful prey drive and an inclination not to listen if they feel that the chance to chase is fun enough to justify disobeying you. Harsh punishments will get you nowhere with this breed.