Breed Rating (3 Reviews)
The Bedlington is named for the mining town of Bedlington in North-east England, UK. They were bred to hunt rats and mice in mines, but were soon valued as catchers of rabbits and foxes, even badgers and otters. Their bloodline includes Whippets, Dandie Dinmont Terriers, and Otterhounds. They love water and are powerful swimmers. By the later 1800s they became popular as show dogs in England. The breed is sometimes called 'lamb dog', due to its odd resemblance to a lamb. This is on account of its unusual coat.
Bedlingtons are feisty, affectionate and loyal. They are one of the least 'terrier-like' of all the Terrier family. Although ruthless when it comes to the animals they were bred to hunt and kill, they are calm and make good house pets.
These dogs are never happier than when curled up on the sofa next to you or in your lap. They are obedient, quiet house dogs, generally good with strangers, and excited to meet anyone who comes to the door. They are also good with children (although not toddlers), being fairly patient, and rarely feeling the need to snap or nip. Their terrier instincts only kick in if they are unhappy about a situation.
Bedlingtons may look like softies, but they will not allow themselves to be bullied by other dogs, and will fight if threatened. They are fearless and tend to be very stubborn when they want to be. This is less of a problem if they have formed a close bond with you. They need daily exercise, but tend to be lazy, dozing on the sofa for hours. They are quite hard to train and recall can be a problem once they get a scent in their nostrils. They are fast runners too, and their instincts as rabbit and rat hunters remain strong. It is best to walk them in a secure area or on a leash, to prevent you having to retrieve them from a rabbit hole half a mile away.
The dog's coat requires regular grooming or stripping to keep it in top condition. They are a non-shedding breed. Generally they are hardy and healthy little dogs.
Bedlingtons are companionable and loyal. Their size and lamb-like appearance is a bit misleading, as these are tough and tenacious little dogs. Bred to hunt everything from mouse to badger, they are that odd combination of slightly lazy companion dogs that have nevertheless lost none of their hunting instincts.
They can be intolerant of cats, and need plenty of exercise in spite of their instinct to doze on the sofa all day. This is a breed that will do best in families with older children.
Bedlington Terriers are more prone than most breeds to copper toxicosis (a copper storage disorder which can prove fatal), retinal dysplasia (folding of retinal tissue that can cause blindness), and renal cortical hypoplasia (underdeveloped kidneys that worsens over time).
- Status: Common
- Life Expectancy: 12 - 14 years
- Weight: 15 - 22 lb
- Height: 15 - 16.5"
- Rare: No
- Coat: Medium - Hypoallergenic
- Grooming Requirements: More than once per week
- Town or Country: Either
- Minimum Home Size: Small House
- Minimum Garden Size: Small to Medium Garden
- Breed Type: Pest Control Dog
- Size: Medium
- Energy Level: Medium
- Exercise Required: Up to 1 hour