CUTE, CURIOUS, CURLY
History & Origin
The Norwich Terrier comes from the northeastern part of the United Kingdom in East Anglia.
Breeders crossbred various terriers and various theories exist about which breeds were used. Some of these include the small Irish Terrier and a bigger Yorkshire Terrier. So there is lots of terrier blood in the Norwich Terrier!
There was no formal breeding program. It seems similar dogs were bred to strengthen attractive traits.
They were developed to hunt rabbits, otters, fox and rats. Farmers used the dogs to protect their crops and to ensure pests were kept away. The Norwich Terrier’s main purpose was as a farm dog, but its cheerful personality made it suitable as a companion dog too.
These days, this is what people value most in the Norwich Terrier. It is less of a hunter and more of a family friend.
Official recognition of the Norwich Terrier was in 1932. This is when breeders began showing the dogs at competitions and dog shows.
Norwich Terriers are fairly rare.
PERSONALITY AND CHARACTER
The Norwich Terrier is one of the smallest terriers. But it has a very big heart and is extremely lovable and fond of people. It is an ideal family pet as it loves children and wants to be part of the action.
Cute and cuddly-looking, the Norwich Terrier is like a little teddy bear you just want to pick up and hug. It may look like a toy, but it has a lot of personality too.
You may expect your Norwich Terrier to have many of the typical terrier characteristics. It is alert and distrustful of strangers. This makes it a good guard dog. It may not be scary looking, but it knows when strangers are at the door.
Although generally good with other pets, you will need to socialize your Norwich Terrier. Like many other terriers, they can be irritable. Furthermore, if you live on a farm or near a park, expect them to go after squirrels, ducks and geese!
Don’t keep hamsters or rabbits in the same household. Your puppy may just chase them too.
The Norwich Terrier wants to be near his owner. He can be kept in an apartment but will need to get outside for some exercise. They are easy to train, although they can be stubborn. Your Norwich Terrier has a good sense of humor and enjoys playing games like fetch.
Norwich Terriers are not the kind of dog to be left alone all day. They thrive on human company and don’t want to feel abandoned. This is not the best dog for people who are away all day at work.
NUTRITION AND FEEDING
This breed has a life span of thirteen to fifteen years. Nonetheless, there are a few things to keep in mind when caring for your Norwich Terrier.
You need to feed your puppy good food. It does not matter if you buy it from a store or decide to make his food yourself. Your Norwich Terrier puppy gets everything he needs to grow big and strong from his food.
If you want a healthy, normal adult dog, you need to start by giving your puppy a balanced, nutritional food.
Many of the ready-made foods in shops are of a low quality, with few vitamins and minerals. Your puppy needs excellent sources of protein. Red meat, fish, chicken and raw eggs are examples of these.
It can be tempting to give your dog the same food that you eat yourself. But dogs have different digestive systems than humans. Studies show that dogs are very similar to wolves. These are animals that eat mainly meat.
Dogs are perfectly designed to eat raw meat. This is one of the reasons why so many people are turning to the raw food diet.
If you decide to feed your puppy raw food, you need to do find out where to get it. Chat to your local butcher or go to the meat section in your supermarket. Learn about getting meat off cuts. These would be meat products, like skin and organs that would not be packaged for food for humans.
Dogs can eat almost all meat, including bones. There are many companies that sell raw dog food. You can check the label to see what is in the food.
Puppies need to eat many times during the day. But the amount of food is very small. Your Norwich Terrier has a tiny stomach and the food goes very quickly through his system to provide him with energy.
In the beginning, you will probably feed him three to four times a day. As he grows older, this will become less frequent. By the time your puppy is one-year-old, he will only eat twice a day.
There should always be fresh water nearby. Most dog foods make dogs thirsty so don’t forget to have a bowl with water for your puppy.
Give only the amount of food stated on the packet. Too many dog owners give their dogs too much food, thinking their puppy is still hungry. A good appetite is a sign of a healthy dog! This does not mean you need to give it more food.
The Norwich Terrier is a small dog, which means it needs to eat less than other dogs. Feeding too much will lead to weight problems. This is dangerous for you puppy’s health.
Get your Norwich Terrier his own bowl. Feed him at set times in the same place. Dogs like routine. It gives them a sense of security to know that every day at a certain time, they can expect food. It will also help to get your puppy used to his new home.
COAT AND GROOMING
Size and Coat
The Norwich Terrier is a small dog. They weigh about 5kg as adult dogs.
Your Norwich Terrier has a double coat, which means there are two layers of hair. The breed standard states that the coat may be red, tan, wheaten, black and tan, and grizzle.
The coat is wiry and tough and the dogs can handle cold and wet conditions. You may keep the coat long or cut it back a bit. This kind of style has grown more popular in recent years. Many people don’t like a messy or unkempt dog.
But if you want to show your Norwich Terrier, you need to know that “the natural look” is preferred. This means that the hair is kept long and brushed every couple of days to keep the coat in shape.
Your Norwich Terrier will need quite a bit of grooming. This is maybe the biggest disadvantage of these dogs. The coat will require brushing and stripping of the coat.
Get your puppy used to brush right away. The sooner it becomes familiar with the various tools you will be using, the easier it will be to groom him.
Weekly brushing is not only good for the dog’s coat but for his skin too. You will have to strip the dog’s coat a couple of times a year. This involves pulling out the hair of the outer coat, to leave the undercoat. Specific brushes are used but professional groomers will use their hands.
Your routine at home should include the checking of the ears and cleaning of teeth. Puppies must have their teeth cleaned regularly. This helps to prevent tooth decay when they are big. Another thing to keep in mind is the clipping of the nails. This should be done every few weeks.
EXERCISE AND TRAINING
Exercise, Energy, and Activities
The Norwich Terrier has a surprisingly large amount of energy for such a small dog! It is a bouncy, lively puppy that needs daily exercise. You should walk your dog every day for at least thirty minutes.
It is best to have a set time of the day when you go for walks. Don’t leave it up to chance or you will end up with no time for your dog. Dogs that have too much energy start to misbehave.
Norwich Terriers with too much time on their hands (or paws) will begin to dig up your garden. They may then develop a barking problem.
The best time for exercise is usually early morning or after work. Teach your dog to walk on a lead. Don’t let it off the lead in areas where there might be small animals. If your dog does not cats, it may chase after a strange cat.
As the Norwich Terrier is a small dog, it will not really be a big jogging partner. But it does appreciate long walks or hikes. Take your dog along when you go get the mail or if you walk down the road to talk to a neighbor, for instance. They will like the outing and get some exercise too.
The Norwich Terrier is an intelligent little guy that learns quickly. Teaching him new tricks will be a lot of fun for both of you. It is one way in which you can keep his little mind busy.
Your training begins the moment the puppy arrives at your house. The words you use with your puppy are part of his training. Always use the same words to praise him or show your disapproval. In this way, your puppy learns what he should and should not be doing.
Always be consistent when training your puppy. This means reacting the same way when your puppy does something. You should not scold him when he does something bad one day but ignore it the next day. This sends mixed messages to your dog.
After socialization, your Norwich Terrier will be ready to begin basic obedience. This is where he learns to sit and stay. He will here learn how to walk on a lead and obey commands.
You may want to consider more training for your dog. Norwich Terriers are very good at agility as well as tracking and hunting activities.
Don’t be alarmed if your Norwich Terrier puppy sleeps all day. When dogs are small they can sleep up to 20 hours a day.
Growing up is hard work! Puppies tend to play a lot and then suddenly drop off, even in the middle of dinner! As he becomes bigger, you will notice him sleeping less.
In the first few nights in his new home, your puppy may appear upset and scared. This is normal. He does not yet know his new family and surroundings. This is why you need to give him a place where he feels safe.
Having his own bed will help your puppy settle down faster. Many people like to sleep with their pets but this is not ideal – for him or for you. Rather get your puppy a bed that is close to your bed, even next to it if you want.
A healthy Norwich Terrier can have a lifespan of 13 to 15 years.
Some of the conditions that affect these dogs are patellar luxation, cataracts, cheyletiella mites and deafness. Norwich Terriers may also get allergies and seizures. Another concern is canine hip dysplasia.
Obesity is one of the biggest health problems that Norwich Terriers face later in life. Many dog owners overfeed their dogs. According to some studies, up to 45% of dogs can be classified as overweight.
Because they are so small, Norwich Terriers are at high risk of picking up weight. The extra body weight has many side effects. These include breathing problems, high blood pressure, diabetes and liver problems. Obesity in dogs can lead to cancer.
These conditions can be treated. But prevention is always better than cure – and cheaper too. Set out to keep your dog as healthy as possible and you will reap the rewards later in his life.
To Sum Up
The Norwich Terrier is a wonderful dog. It does not matter if it joins a family or an elderly couple. Your puppy will be a playmate and when he grows up, a friendly protector and loyal buddy. Besides, there are puppies for all!
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