Smooth Fox Terrier

August 3, 2020 // 6 minute read

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Smooth Fox Terriers are small-sized dogs known for their lively and active appearance. Even with their small size, their bodies are compact and muscular, and there’s no denying their speed and agility. Unlike their wire fox terrier cousins, the coat of the Smooth Fox Terrier is short and flat against the body, hence their name.

Smooth Fox Terriers are best fit in active homes, so they are given enough exercise. They also need someone who can be there most of the time and provide them with attention. With their lively personalities, they may not be great dogs for inexperienced owners. They need someone firm, yet kind, to control his personality.

Smooth Fox Terrier

Smooth Fox Terrier Breed Statistics

Dog Breed GroupTerrier Group
Breed SizeSmall
Height15 ½ inches
Weight18 pounds (male); 15-17 pounds (female)
Lifespan12-15 years

Smooth Fox Terrier Breed Ratings

Energy level
Exercise needs
Requires attention
Friendly with family
Friendly with kids
Friendly with strangers
Friendly with other dogs
Prey Drive

Smooth Fox Terrier History

Smooth Fox Terriers were developed around the 18th century England. They were often bred together with the Wire Fox Terriers and were used mainly for fox hunting because of their size. They usually ride on saddle bags or boxes and were released to drive foxes out of the ground.

Compared to the Wire Fox Terriers, these dogs have longer legs. They are also believed to have been bred from smooth-coated Black and Tan Terriers, Bull Terriers, Greyhounds, and Beagles.

During the 19th century, Wire and Smooth Fox Terriers have identical looks, and their coats are what make them different from each other. Because of this, they were once considered to be of the same breed, which is the Fox Terrier.

By 1985, the two fox terrier breeds were finally separated into two distinct breeds. Now, the Smooth Fox Terriers ranks 122nd as the most popular dog breed in the US.

Smooth Fox Terrier Breed


Smooth Fox Terriers are friendly, independent, and amusing dogs. These dogs are very active and playful, so it’s best to give them lots of exercise daily. They love the outdoors, and it makes him very happy if you include him in every family activity.

These dogs are the best fit for active owners who can cope up with their boundless energy. Make sure to keep them entertained and give him the needed attention, so they don’t get bored.

True to their hunting background, these are fearless dogs with high prey drive. They may challenge other pets, especially strange dogs or cats who didn’t grow up with them. These dogs are also known to be alert and protective, which makes them excellent watchdogs too.

Smooth Fox Terriers can be great playmates for older children who can behave well. They love people, but they can be aloof to strangers who haven’t been introduced yet.

Early socialization is crucial to make the breed more well-rounded. It will also encourage a more stable temperament.

Training can be challenging because of his stubbornness. It’s essential to be firm and consistent but never harsh. Instead, positive reinforcements are very helpful to make him obey.

Smooth Fox Terrier Care Requirements

  • Nutrition: Smooth Fox Terriers also need a high-quality and well-balanced meal to keep them healthy and happy. They need protein to support muscle growth, fats for a healthy coat, and carbohydrates for energy. When buying food for your dog, always make sure to choose high-quality ingredients. Even dog food should be of premium quality too, so it doesn’t contain any fillers, preservatives, and additives that may be harmful to the breed. You also need to watch out for your dog’s daily calorie intake. It’s easy to overfeed small dogs like the smooth fox terriers, so ask your vet for a guide on how to feed him properly.
  • Grooming: As their name implies, Smooth Fox Terriers have short, smooth coats that shed occasionally. These are very easy to maintain and would only need weekly brushing to stay neat and healthy. Baths can be given at least once a month. You may have to do this frequently if he does a lot of digging that can make him dirty. Make sure to clean out his ears regularly to avoid ear infection. Nails should be trimmed regularly and kept short. Long nails can cause pain and discomfort to your dog, especially to an active one like the Smooth Fox Terrier.
  • Exercise: Like any terrier breeds, Smooth Fox Terriers are known to be lively and athletic dogs. They require regular exercise, which can be in the form of daily walks with his owners. You can also create activities that you can do together to make him happier. This could be like chasing tennis balls or frisbees. The critical thing to remember is to do this in a securely fenced yard. If you want to let him run around on his own, keep a close watch on him. They might dig their way out to escape when you’re not looking, and they tend to chase small animals he perceives as prey.
  • Health: Although Smooth Fox Terriers are generally healthy dogs, there are still some common diseases and health conditions they are prone to. As dog owners, it’s highly essential to be aware of what these are. Some health problems to note are Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, luxating patellas, allergies, congenital heart conditions, eye abnormalities, deafness, and seizure disorders. There are screening tests your dog can take to detect the presence of certain diseases early. We also highly recommend meeting at least one of your dog’s parents so you can be aware of any hereditary conditions your dog may have. Continuous monitoring is also essential. You also need to make sure to take him for a check-up if you notice any changes.
  • Lifespan: The life expectancy of Smooth Fox Terriers is 12-15 years.

Smooth Fox Terrier Dog

Fun Facts about Smooth Fox Terriers

  • Smooth Fox Terriers originated in 18th century England.
  • They are cousins of the Wire Fox Terriers.
  • They were developed to hunt foxes, and are usually accompanied by foxhounds.
  • They were registered in the American Kennel Club in 1885.
  • They were recognized as a separate breed in 1985.
  • Breeding the dogs for appearance started in the 19th century.

Check Out Other Terrier Dog Breeds:
Airedale Terrier, American Hairless Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Australian Terrier, Bedlington Terrier, Border Terrier, Bull Terrier, Cairn Terrier, Cesky Terrier, Dandie Dinmont Terriers, Glen of Imaal Terriers, Irish Terrier, Kerry Blue Terrier, Lakeland Terrier, Manchester Terrier, Miniature Bull Terrier, Miniature Schnauzer, Norfolk Terrier, Norwich Terrier, Parson Russell Terrier, Rat Terrier, Russell Terrier, Scottish Terrier, Sealyham Terriers, Skye Terrier, Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Welsh Terrier, West Highland White Terrier, Wire Fox Terrier

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