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Home > Dogs > 10 Wheaten Terrier Pros & Cons You Should Know

10 Wheaten Terrier Pros & Cons You Should Know

Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier

When you’re considering adding a dog to your family, researching the breeds that you are most interested in is vital! How else will you know if your new dog will be the best fit for your household?

If the Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier is high on your list, you’ve come to the right place! Here, we through the Wheaten’s good points and not-so-good points, which should give you a clearer picture of whether this breed is right for you.



1. Loving and Loyal

The Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier is famous for being a devoted and loving dog with their family. They form strong bonds with their owners and will enjoy nice cuddling time at the end of the day.

2. Low Shedding

Wheatens have gorgeous coats of silky, wavy, and soft fur. They are only single-coated, which means while they do shed, they don’t shed as much as a double-coated breed.

There’s no such thing as a dog that is 100% hypoallergenic. However, the Wheaten is a good option for allergy sufferers who are prepared to do regular grooming and cleaning.

Irish soft coated wheaten terrier_Dora Zett_shutterstock
Image Credit: Dora Zett, Shutterstock

3. Great With Children

Wheatens with the right training and socialization are great with kids. They enjoy playing and cuddling with them. That said, it’s important to note that small children are not recommended around a Wheaten.

They might handle the clumsiness of toddlers, but some terriers might be reactive if their ears are pulled or paws are stepped on. This is where training is essential, along with constant supervision when your child is in the same room as the dog.

4. Friendly and Cheerful

Wheatens are known as exceptionally happy and friendly dogs. If you’re looking for a high-energy dog, the Wheaten Terrier is just that! They are exuberant, and it’s that sweet yet extroverted energy that Wheaten owners love best.

5. Great Watchdogs

The Wheaten is deeply devoted to their owner, which also leads to protectiveness. Anyone they don’t know who approaches their territory will definitely get barked at.

But once they meet the stranger, they will quite joyously welcome them with Wheaten Terrier enthusiasm. They aren’t typically an aggressive breed.

Wheaten Terrier
Image Credit: furry_portraits, Pixabay

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6. Strong Prey Drive

All terriers tend to have a strong prey drive, and the Wheaten is no exception. If they are raised from puppyhood to maturity, they will get along well with other pets, but you’ll probably never be able to walk them off-leash.

A small animal suddenly running by will be too much of an enticement for the Wheaten, so training for reliable recall is vital!

7. Stubborn

Training will be a challenge because like all terriers, the Wheaten is quite independent-minded and stubborn. They can also be bossy and strong-willed, so consistent and persistent training is imperative.

They are quite intelligent, so training sessions must be interesting and only use positive reinforcement.

8. High-Maintenance Coat

The Wheaten has a gorgeous coat, but it’s a high-maintenance coat. All that soft fur mats easily, so they must be brushed every day and bathed about once a month.

Additionally, their coat grows quickly, so it must be trimmed every 4 to 6 weeks. This will either take a gouge out of your budget or your time if you opt to groom your Wheaten yourself.

Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier
Image Credit: Audrius Vizbaras, Pixabay

9. High Exercise Needs

The Wheaten is a high-energy dog that needs at least 1 hour of moderate to high-intensity exercise daily. It is better to aim for closer to 2 hours if possible, preferably spent with you.

You can take them hiking or jogging and play active games like fetch. Without proper exercise, Wheatens can become quite naughty and destructive.

10. Low Tolerance to Hot Weather

The Wheaten tends to overheat quite easily in hot weather, so you’ll need to minimize their outdoor exposure during excessively hot days.

This won’t apply to you if you live in a location with moderate weather. However, for anyone living in an area with a great deal of heat, you might need to find a dog that can handle the weather better.

brown soft coated wheaten terrier dog laying on a brown chair with a blurred background
Image Credit: Joseph Hendrickson, Shutterstock


It’s All Subjective

There are pros and cons for all dogs, but remember that it’s all subjective. Some people will find dealing with a stubborn terrier to be a negative point, while others love the challenge.

Likewise, with things like exercise, some people prefer a high-energy dog so they have a running partner, while others prefer a leisurely stroll with a calm breed.

Health Conditions of the Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier

You now know a fair bit about the Wheaten’s temperament and some of what goes into the care of this breed. Let’s cover a few common potential health conditions to give you a full picture of the Wheaten.

  • Retinal dysplasia: This is also known as progressive retinal atrophy, which is a disorder that can result in the dog losing their vision entirely.
  • Hip dysplasia: Hip dysplasia can affect almost any dog, but large dogs are more likely to suffer from it. The hip joint loosens and causes dysfunction and pain.
  • Renal dysplasia: Renal dysplasia occurs in puppies born with abnormal kidneys, and unfortunately, there’s no treatment. Some dogs with mild cases have good prognoses with supportive treatment, which is medication and diet.
  • Addison’s disease: Addison’s disease results when the adrenal glands don’t produce the right levels of corticosteroid hormones. If caught early, the prognosis is good.
  • Protein-losing nephropathy: Protein-losing nephropathy is a specific kidney problem that leads to protein and blood serum leaking into the urine.
  • Protein-losing enteropathy: Protein-losing enteropathy is when there’s a loss of proteins from the bloodstream that enter the gastrointestinal tract.



Soft-Coated Wheaten Terriers are fantastic dogs that will make the right owner happy. If you love the outdoors and doing a bunch of activities with a dog, the Wheaten is a definite candidate.

If you would also love a companion that won’t always listen to you and can present a challenge on a daily basis but will also love you unconditionally, the Wheaten might be your dog!

Featured Image Credit: furry_portraits, Pixabay

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