April 16, 2013 PetGuide
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Sealyham Terrier

  • Height: 10-11 inches
  • Weight: 20-45 lb
  • Lifespan: 12-15 years
  • Group: AKC Terrier
  • Best Suited For: Families with children, singles, seniors, apartments, houses with/without yards
  • Temperament: Playful, comedic, loving, confident
  • Comparable Breeds: Dandie Dinmont Terrier, West Highland White Terrier

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Fun-loving and typically the clown of the family, the Sealyham Terrier is playful and comedic. His funny antics will melt even the hardest of hearts. Although this breed loves his family tremendously, he is quite content to be left alone while the humans are gone for the day. Sealyham Terriers are confident and sure of themselves. Although not technically watchdogs, this breed will surely alert you when anyone or anything is around.

Known to those who love them as Sealies, they do require consistency or they will overtake the home. Training and socialization started at an early age will help keep this feisty pup in line.

Fun-loving and typically the clown of the family, Sealyham Terriers are playful and comedic.

Originating in Wales, the Sealyham Terrier was named for the estate of the gentlemen acclaimed for its development in the 1800s. The breed was used to hunt fox, badger and otters on and in the ground. His size and tenacious nature made him perfect for the job as well as a wonderful household companion.

sealyham-terrier-1It is believed that the Sealyham Terrier was developed by Captain John Edwardes. The combination of Dandie Dinmont Terriers, West Highland White Terriers, Wirehair Fox Terriers, Bull Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Welsh Corgis and the now extinct Cheshire Terriers resulted in the breed we know today.

Because the Sealy is small but active, he needs a diet of high-quality, dry food. Feeding dry kibble can help to prevent oral hygiene problems such as bad breath, tooth decay and gum disease. Be sure to feed the Sealyham Terrier the proper amount of food as indicated on the bag as Sealies have a tendency to overeat and become overweight.

Sealyham Terriers are feisty and strong-willed dogs.

Sealyham Terriers are feisty and strong-willed dogs. They require an assertive but kind family that won’t let the dog walk all over them. The Sealy needs regular training sessions to keep him from misbehaving. Consistency, along with loads of praise and treats, is best when working with a Sealy. Training should begin from the time you get the new puppy. This should go on throughout the dog’s life to ensure that he never forgets his place within the family.

Sealies were bred to hunt small animals so they do remarkably well at Earthdog competitions. Being the mellowest of the terriers, this breed can be wonderful therapy dogs as well as family companions. Of course, with a lot of hard work, the Sealy can do well in obedience trials as well as in the breed ring.

The Sealyham Terrier should ideally weigh between 20 and 25 pounds and stand 10 ½ tall at the withers.

sealyham-terrier-2An independent dog, the Sealy is perfectly fine with being left alone while his humans work but he is also thrilled to snuggle up on their laps when they get home. This breed does tend to be relentless barkers however; they are not quite as bad as other terrier breeds. Their personalities and clown-like antics will keep the family laughing for hours.

The Sealy might be small but he doesn’t understand the concept of this. Because he can be food and toy aggressive, this breed is not appropriate for families with young children. Considering his strong instinct to chase, he should not live with cats or other small animals. If raised with another dog in the home, the Sealy will get along famously with it, but can be aggressive toward strange dogs.

Sealies are pretty healthy dogs however; they do have some health issues that are common within the breed. Progressive retinal apathy, lens luxation, cataracts, glaucoma and lacrimal punctual aplasia seem to be problematic for this breed. Sealyham Terriers are also prone to having back problems which can be very debilitating.

Sealyham Terriers usually live to be 12 to 15 years of age.

Although Sealies need daily exercise, they don’t need a lot of it. A vigorous walk around the block each day or tossing a ball in the yard is certainly enough exercise for this playful dog. Sealyham Terriers can live happily in a small apartment or on a sprawling ranch; they aren’t picky about their outdoor options because they prefer being inside. He only requires a minimal amount of exercise therefore; he will be happiest with a family that predominantly hangs out indoors and chills out on the sofa.

An independent dog, the Sealy is perfectly fine with being left alone while his humans work but he is also thrilled to snuggle up on their laps when they get home.

The American Kennel Club states: “This proud, compact, sturdy little dog makes an ideal companion. Charming and inquisitive, he loves his family, but as a spirited terrier breed, needs something to keep his active mind occupied. The breed may enjoy hunting on the farm, but can thrive anywhere if they are allowed to enjoy a brisk daily walk. Brushing and combing is necessary at least twice a week to remove mats and trimming is necessary every month.” The Sealyham Terriers was first recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1911.

Sealies have medium-length, double coats that are weather resistant. The coat was established to keep him protected while hunting badger, otters and foxes. The outer coat is quite wiry while the undercoat is very soft to the touch. This breed should be completely white however; lemon or tan markings can often be found on the ears and head. The markings are called points.

The coat actually needs to be hand stripped seasonally, if being shown but the average pet can have the coat intact. Hand stripping is very time-consuming. If the coat is clipped, it will feel a lot softer but the dog will shed more often. Bathing should be done seasonally unless the dog becomes filthy or smelly. The average Sealyham Terrier should be brushed thoroughly several times each week. This will help to prevent the coat from getting tangled and matted.

Sealy puppies are bundles of energy and tend to be nippy and jumpy. For this reason puppy kindergarten classes should begin immediately after vaccinations. Training classes will help the puppy become socialized with other people and dogs, which is necessary for this breed. Be sure to puppy proof your home as Sealyham Terrier pups tend to chew on electrical wires.


Comparable Breeds

Go to Dandie Dinmont Terrier

Dandie Dinmont Terrier

  • Height: 8-11 inches
  • Weight: 18-24 lb
  • Lifespan: 12-15 years
  • Group: AKC Terrier
  • Best Suited For: Families with older children, singles, seniors, apartments, houses with/without yards
  • Temperament: Loyal, affectionate, intelligent, independent
  • Comparable Breeds: Skye Terrier, Scottish Terrier
Go to West Highland White Terrier

West Highland White Terrier

  • Height: 9-12 inches
  • Weight: 13-22 lb
  • Lifespan: 12-14 years
  • Group: AKC Terrier
  • Best Suited For: Families with children, singles, seniors, apartment, houses with/without yards
  • Temperament: Friendly, affectionate, intelligent, independent
  • Comparable Breeds: Cairn Terrier, Scottish Terrier