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Home > Dogs > Dog Breeds > Manchester Terrier Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Manchester Terrier Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!


The Manchester Terrier comes in two sizes: standard and toy. However, this only applies to North America because in England, which is where this dog originated, the toy version is a separate breed from the standard and is called the English Toy Terrier. In this article, we discuss the toy and standard Manchester Terrier.

Breed Overview


15–16 inches (standard), 10–12 inches (toy)


12–22 pounds (standard), under 12 pounds (toy)


15–17 years (standard & toy)


Black and tan

Suitable for:

Active families or single people, apartments, or house with a yard


Energetic, intelligent, devoted, sensitive, spirited, alert

Manchester Terriers are from Manchester, England from the mid-19th century. Mill workers, specifically John Hulme, developed the breed from crossing Whippets with Black and Tan Terriers for the perfect dog that would excel at rat killing and rabbit hunting.

Their ears can be floppy or held erect, and they have a whiplike tail. Manchester Terriers have smooth and shiny coats that are technically black and tan but look more like a rich mahogany in color.

Manchester Terrier Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

divider-dog pawManchester Terrier Puppies

Manchester Terriers are healthy, high-energy dogs that have a long lifespan. Training can be a challenge because they can be stubborn, and they are also standoffish with strangers until they get to know them.

Temperament & Intelligence of the Manchester Terrier

Manchester Terriers are spunky and feisty dogs with a ton of energy. They can be rather bossy and won’t be a good fit for a beginner dog owner or anyone who is away frequently, as they don’t do well when left alone for long periods.

Manchester Terriers are quite intelligent and perceptive. This breed is devoted and affectionate and does enjoy spending time with their families. They can be rather wary and aloof with people they don’t know, and they make decent watchdogs.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Yes, they make wonderful family dogs but older children would be best. The toy Manchester is too small for younger children because they are quite fragile, and the standard doesn’t have patience for roughhousing. Be sure to teach your children to play gently with dogs and to treat them with respect.

Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets?

Manchester Terriers
Image By: Radomir Rezny, Shutterstock

Yes, but with a few exceptions. Manchesters do get along well with other dogs and sometimes cats, but they can’t be trusted around small pets because of their instincts and high prey drive. Early socialization is essential, particularly if you do have smaller pets.

divider-pawThings to Know When Owning a Manchester Terrier

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

When choosing food for your dog, be sure to buy high-quality dog food that is meant for your dog’s current age, activity level, and size, whether you have the smaller toy or the larger standard. Follow the instructions provided on the back of the dog food bag in order to figure out how much to feed your Manchester daily. Speak to your vet if your dog is struggling with any weight or health issues.

Exercise 🐕

Manchesters are quite high-energy dogs and will need at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. These dogs don’t necessarily want to lie around the house. They enjoy being active, so be sure to take them out for plenty of playtime and activity.

Training 🎾

Image By: Cynoclub, Shutterstock

Training Manchesters can be a challenge. They are feisty and stubborn dogs (due to the terrier in them) that need someone with patience to guide them. That said, Manchesters are highly intelligent and eager to please, so you will be able to train them at some point. Just remember to use positive reinforcement to be truly effective.

Grooming ✂️

Grooming is easy with the occasional brushing of their short coats, but you’ll need to up the brushing during shedding season. Manchesters only require a bath when absolutely necessary and with a good dog shampoo.

The Manchester’s nails need trimming about every 3–4 weeks, their teeth brushed two to three times a week, and their ears cleaned at least once a week.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Manchester Terriers are quite healthy dogs with a surprisingly long lifespan, typically living until 15 or even 17 years of age. However, like all purebred dogs, they can inherit certain health conditions.

Minor Conditions
  • Glaucoma
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Skin problems
Serious Conditions
  • Heart disease
  • Von Willebrand’s disease
  • Kneecap dislocation

The vet will look at the Manchester’s skin, eyes and knees and perform tests on the heart as well as run a blood test to check for any issues with the thyroid.

Male vs. Female

Like with most dogs, male Manchesters are a little bigger and heavier than females. Toy Manchesters are 10–12 inches and weigh about 6–8 pounds, and the standard is 15–16 inches and weighs 12–22 pounds. You can expect the male to be on the heavier and larger side of the range and the female closer to the smaller and lighter end.

You’ll also need to invest in surgery for Manchester. Spaying is a more expensive procedure and has a longer recovery time than neutering. Beyond sterilizing the dog, these operations can help with curbing difficult behaviors and preventing certain health conditions in the future.

There can be differences in behavior and temperament, but how the puppy is socialized and trained has a much larger impact on a dog’s personality than their sex.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Manchester Terrier

1. They are rather barky.

Manchester Terriers are known to be barkers, so while they’re a good size for apartments, their watchdog natures might not make this a good fit.

2. The Manchester Terrier has a strong prey drive.

They were bred to chase rats and rabbits, so they need to be safely contained in a high fence or on a leash when they are outside. They can be quite determined if something small crosses their path.

3. The toy and the standard versions are practically the same.

The main difference between the standard and toy Manchester Terrier is their size and the shape of their ears. The toy’s ears are always kept natural and are held erect and pointed. The standard’s ears can be cropped, button, or natural, which tends to be floppy.

two Manchester Terriers
Image By: Ricantimages, Shutterstock

divider-dogFinal Thoughts

If you’re on the lookout for one of these dogs, you should quite easily find a breeder not too far from your location. While this breed isn’t as popular as some others, they are members of the AKC and shouldn’t be difficult to find. However, if you do encounter any problems locating one, speak to other breeders of the Manchester and post your interest on social media.

If you’re interested in adopting this dog, you can always check your local shelter or locate a breed-specific rescue, such as the Maximal Manchester Terriers.

You should do more research on the Manchester before you decide to bring one home. Their high energy, feistiness, and stubbornness won’t work for everyone, but if this sounds appealing to you, then the Manchester Terrier will bring a great deal of joy to you and your household.

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Featured Image Credit: Ricantimages, Shutterstock

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