Sealyham Terrier Dog Breed
|Right Breed For You?||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 Sealyham terrier is best suited as an indoor pet but it loves to be outside for play and exercise. The breed does not make a good kennel dog that is left caged. The Sealyham is well suited for apartment and condominium living, but is equally at home in the country setting. Brushing and combing is necessary at least twice a week to remove mats and trimming is necessary every month.||Discount Pet Supply Recommendations|
|Height:||9 – 11 inches|
|Weight:||19 – 25 lbs|
|Life Span:||12 to 15 years|
|Litter Size:||up to 3 pups|
|Color:||The coat is all white, or may have lemon, tan, or badger markings on the head and ears. Coat may be more a yellowish-white than a pure white color.|
|Recognized By:||CKC, FCI, AKC, ANKC, NKC, NZKC, APRI, ACR|
The Sealyham terrier is a small dog that thinks it is a big dog. On average, the Sealyham terrier stands about 101/2 inches at the shoulder and normally weighs approximately 24 pounds at maturity.
Other than markings on the head, the Sealyham should be all white but in some cases it is yellowish-white. The healthy coat is a double coat with a soft and dense undercoat and an outer coat that is hard, wiry and weather-resistant.
The breed has small dark eyes that should be bright and alert. The Sealyham terrier has thick brows, and thick whiskers that give the face a look of distinction and power. The nose is big and black.
It has been said that everything about the Sealyham indicates strength and power, even though the breed is small in stature. Its short legs are furnished with a high degree of strength in both bone and muscle. The back is level, and the short tail will most often stand up straight. The breed is exceptionally fast as a runner and can surprise owners with its agility and speed. The animal is usually very keen and alert to its surroundings.
The Sealyham terrier has a harsh, coarse, and straight double coat that is water resistant. The outer coat is hard and wiry, while the under coat is soft and dense. The Sealyham is a very minimal shedder.
This breed has an interesting history. The Sealyham terrier derives its name from Sealy Ham, Haverfordwest, Wales. Captain John Edwards developed this breed around 1848 as a hunting dog for vermin and fox.
Captain Edwards did not keep any records of his endeavors but later students surmised that the original terriers were probably descendents of white-haired terriers which Edwards’ Flemish ancestors brought to Wales at the time of the Norman Conquest. It is also assumed he used a small white terrier resembling a bull terrier which is now extinct to begin the breeding.
The Sealyham’s first recorded show appearance was in 1903 at a local affair in Wales and the breed was first imported to the U.S. in 1911.
The Sealyham terrier is a strong-willed breed and it often has a mind of its own. Because of this, they should be trained early in life to obey commands and to learn that you are the master, not they. As you may know, this breed was once used to kill vermin and this aggressiveness has not been lost to the breed over the ages.
As with most terriers, the Sealyham terrier can be very stubborn and dominant in a willful way. This type of inbred attitude makes them unsuitable for some owners. Owners who are looking for a pet that will do tricks and be entertaining in that type of way may do better to look at other breeds as the Sealyham terrier may prove to be disappointing in this regard.
It should be noted that the Sealyham terrier will growl or snap if it feels provoked or if it simply does not want to do something. This should be kept in mind if the home has small children in it. This behavior, while annoying to the owner, should be regarded as an inner trait of the breed. This is one reason why the Sealyham terrier was so well adapted at hunting. The animal will fight back if it feels it is being threatened.
The Sealyham terrier can be scrappy with other dogs of the same sex. They will happily get into a fight with other dogs if provoked, and sometimes will be the aggressors. It is important to understand that because of their hunting background, most Sealyham terriers have strong instincts to chase and seize small fleeing creatures, and this includes the family cat or other pets.
While all of the above is true, it is also true that the Sealyham terrier can be very loyal and faithful to the family that owns it. They are usually somewhat aloof with strangers but this fades as they get to know the people.
The stubbornness that this breed has requires early obedience training. You should not tease this animal. Possessiveness of food and toys is a common behavioral trait that should be corrected early on.
One of the most important health issues for the Sealyham terrier is the potential for getting an eye disease that is known as lens luxation. All Sealy owners should stay alert to the possible symptoms of the onset of lens luxation. The disease tends to appear most frequently in dogs 3-4 years old and older. If you suspect lens luxation, you may only have a matter of a few days to get a diagnosis and treatment to save the eye.
If you notice any of the following symptoms you should call your vet immediately:
- Excessive pus-like matter in the corner of the eye
- Indications of pain or discomfort in the eye
- Changes in the inside appearance of the eye
Other than the above, the Sealy is a healthy, hardy animal and does not contract illness or disease as some breeds tend to do. When properly cared for the breed will remain healthy for years.
Of the more common afflictions that all breeds are susceptible to the Sealyham terrier may contract:
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy
- Juvenile kidney disease
- patellar luxation
- hip dysplasia
Routine check ups are recommended, but is highly recommended that you have its eyes checked regularly.
For non-show dogs, the Sealyham terrier requires clipping and trimming every few months to keep its coat short and free of mats.
When it comes to trimming and stripping, the Sealyham terrier requires professional trimming and stripping of the coat. Owners may wish to learn this task from a professional, but most owners prefer to have the work done by others.
On a general basis, they need to be brushed twice weekly to prevent mats from forming in their hair.
The teeth need to be kept clean as well. If the owner is not able to perform this grooming task, a pet salon should be used. Proper dental care is extremely important as it helps your pet to keep its teeth for as long as possible.
Special care should be taken when cleaning your Sealy’s ears. For general cleaning, you can use baby oil and a cotton ball. Take special care to not go too far into the ear as you could damage the ear drum. It is best to gently wipe around the outer ear and remove any debris that you may find.
While grooming your Sealy, always take a moment to examine its eyes for any signs of problems or infections.
You should also trim your pet’s nails once a week or so to prevent overgrowth. This is very easy to do. You will need a pair of animal nail clippers that can be found in most pet stores. Only trim the top portion of the nail and do not over cut into the nail.
The hair between the pads of the feet should be trimmed when it becomes long.
Baths should be given only when needed and you should use a mild shampoo. You may, however, use a dry shampoo as needed.
New dog owners can take a class on how to properly perform these tasks at most pet grooming salons. The tools and brushes needed for grooming the Sealy are readily available and affordable at most pet stores.
The Sealyham terrier requires moderate exercise. They enjoy walks but they must be securely leashed or they will run off or get into fights with other animals. They thrive on family activities and play sessions.
The Sealy can be a very energetic animal when it is playing. Indoors it is usually rather calm and relaxed. Once it knows the family, it will play safely with children.
For exercise purposes, it is considered a Medium Level breed. It will enjoy hearty workouts but they should not be overly taxing to the animal. In general, a healthy animal will enjoy about 20 to 40 minutes of fun exercise before it tires out or loses interest. It is important to always remember that it will run after just about anything that it sees. For this reason a sturdy leash or fenced yard is all but mandatory.
This breed can be a challenge. The Sealyham terrier has a tendency to be difficult to train. They are quick to learn, but they have also been known to try to undermine their master’s authority. For the most part, they do well with early socialization and obedience training.
Sealyham terriers respond best to firm, fair, and consistent direction. They enjoy agility exercises and are enthusiastic participants in activities but they will run off if they decide to chase something.
Owners can use food and praise methods as forms of training but do not be surprised if these methods do not work all the time.
Physical punishment will not work with terriers and will only make them more difficult to train. Teasing will produce the same results. Demonstrating consistent leadership so that a Sealy respects your decisions is more important than advanced obedience exercises.
Because of their inbred temperament, it is often best to have the breed trained early on in life and this training may need to be performed by a professional who is knowledgeable about this particular breed. It should never be expected that the animal will be completely docile or lose its hunter instincts, but you can teach it to behave within certain boundaries if that training is conducted early on and performed correctly.