Patterdale Terrier

Owning A Patterdale Terrier

Patterdale Terrier – Introduction to breed

Patterdale terriers are highly energetic dogs that were initially bred in the Lake District (England) for hunting badgers and foxes. Even though fox hunting is illegal they are now used for protecting game birds on a hunt and quite often also used as ratters. Due to the Patterdale’s cute appearance and loyalty to their owner, Patterdale terriers make great pets. This blog is all about owning a Patterdale terrier as a pet.

Patterdale Terrier – Exercise needs

Due to the high amount of energy that they have, Patterdales are better suited to countryside homes rather than urban ones. If you want a Patterdale terrier you will need to be prepared to go on at least two walks a day and extended hikes in the early mornings at least on weekends. A pet Patterdale will be sure to keep you fit!

The best owners for Patterdale terriers are those who can work at home and can be with him or her all day. If this is not possible, the ideal situation would be a large family with people whose work patterns cross over so that there is usually someone with him or her. Avoid leaving a Patterdale alone for more than 3-4 hours at a time. Their boredom can turn into destruction!

When you own a Patterdale terrier, you need to understand that they are an intelligent breed and need a great deal of intellectual stimulation as well as physical exercise. A training minded household will therefore be beneficial. Start with obedience training and socialisation (with other dogs and people). Then you can entertain your dog with scent trails, puzzles and games.

Patterdales are also a great breed for small dog agility. They are fast and very food motivated which makes them good at agility training.

However, because of their built in prey drive, they can be easily distracted. Therefore it might be a good idea to keep your Patterdale on a lead in unfamiliar surroundings. The last thing that you want is for your Patterdale to bolt across a road because he sees a cat or get stuck down a rabbit hole.

Patterdale Terrier – Summary

All problems aside, a Patterdale terrier is one of the most loving pets that you can have. While you’re relaxing in the evening, your dog won’t be in his own bed, he will be as close to you as possible, and preferably snuggled up on your lap!

Enjoy your Patterdale Terrier!

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  1. My son has a patterdale terrier I look after him frequently, the biggest problem I have he barks a the least little sound, he stresses out the cats and my wee staffie husband had enough…

    1. Hi Angela, thanks for your comment. Does your son report that he’s always been a barker or if he doing it more when he stays with you? If other Patterdale Terrier owners want to comment feel free, are they known for their barking and do they generally get on well in households that have cats?


  2. I own a (very lively) Patterdale. She is not a barker, in fact she hardly barked for the first few years of having her. Now she barks a bit when there is a knock at the door (which I like) but bar that rarely barks. If other dogs do she will join in but I can go weeks without hearing her bark. I believe for terriers they are some of the most quiet so perhaps he’s a bit unsettled at yours.

    I would however say they are prey orientated dogs and the cats could be blowing his mind! My dog would be chasing (and possibly catching) cats if I let her. I have been able to train her to not chase them but her mind is still blown by them. I would not recommend Patterdale’s to be left alone with any small animal as they really are hunters and chasers.

    1. Hi Tracey,

      Yes terriers generally do seem to have a high prey drive. Their breeding really does form a large part of their personality and it’s for us owners to make sure we pick a breed that fits our lifestyle rather than a breed we like the look of.


  3. I have a 2 yr old patterdale called freddo and he is like a Tasmanian devil 😈 he’s torn up my garden and there is holes everywhere and a couple of sofas!! He’s flooded my house by pulling out the washing machine plumbing😣 he also has taught himself to climbs trees!!! He used to escape all the time and I have no idea how with a six foot fence around the garden but he has been on my local spotted page atleast 15 times. He has came in twice weather feathers all over his face(pidgeons)……..But let me tell you he knows every trick in the book if I’ve got a treat in my hand and is the most clever dog I’ve ever met in my life and he’s very loving and great around other dogs and love him too bits but I don’t trust the little buggar one bit 🤣🤣

  4. I have a patterdale shes 14 and still thinks shes a puppy shes amazing loving dog great with kids and soft hearted she makes us laugh every day loves her routines, and she also tells me when my daughter gonna have a seizure, which I never taught her shes just amazing I think patterdales are so intelligent and loyal cudnt be without her.

  5. I have a rescue patterdale and he’s cute as a button he knows how to play the game , he turns away in the huff making you feel awful 😂, he has days when he’s barks morning noon and night, he loves cuddling in too, I developed breast cancer last year and the little fella didn’t leave my side even still if I am out of his sight longer than 3 minutes (we have timed him) he’s the most loyal loving dog he’s just a joy and so funny 😆

  6. Hi all Just got a Norfolk Terrier cross with a patterdale now 5 months old . So loving and so energetic only chews his toys . But to be fair would not leave him in a room on his own . Sleeps well but up early goes to bed about ten and up at 6 sleeps in his crate and he loves it . Great family pet but needs a lot of exercise. We are both retired so can give him plenty of time . Would not leave him more than 4 hours in crate during the day . Stay safe all.

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