Manchester Terrier

Canis lupus

Last updated: May 27, 2024
Verified by: AZ Animals Staff
© Ricantimages/

Fences are no match for Manchester terriers. They’re great escape artists!


Manchester Terrier Scientific Classification

Scientific Name
Canis lupus

Read our Complete Guide to Classification of Animals.

Manchester Terrier Conservation Status

Manchester Terrier Locations

Manchester Terrier Locations

Manchester Terrier Facts

Fun Fact
Fences are no match for Manchester terriers. They’re great escape artists!
Alert, observant, devoted, and discerning

Manchester Terrier Physical Characteristics

  • Blue
  • Black
  • Tan
Skin Type
12 lbs

Manchester Terrier as a Pet:

General Health
Energy Level
Tendency to Chew
Family and kid friendliness
Yappiness / Barking
Separation Anxiety
Preferred Temperature
Warm climate
Exercise Needs
Friendly With Other Dogs
Pure bred cost to own
$600 to $1,000
Dog group
Male weight
12-22 lbs
Female weight
12-22 lbs

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Early Manchester breeders typically didn’t last long because they quickly grew frustrated with the shape of offsprings’ ears. Only a handful of enthusiasts persevered — and eventually, they got it right!

Manchester terriers are excellent, attentive dogs that come in two sizes: standard and toy. The Sherlock Holmeses of the canine world, they’re impressively observant and intelligent. But unlike the famous fictional detective, Manchester terriers are good with children and outwardly affectionate with their humans. Plus, shedding isn’t a massive issue with the breed, making them easy additions to any household!

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Evolution And History

Active and adaptable, Manchester terriers are equally fit for game hunters living on country estates and city-dwellers with small apartments. Originally bred two be both good ratters for Manchester’s factories and companionable gentlemen’s hunting dogs, the breed came about by crossing black and tan terriers with whippets. Although it was named after the city of Manchester in 1860, it was still referred to as the black and tan terrier until the early 20th Century. A longtime member of the American Kennel Club, the Manchester terrier was first inducted in 1887.

It’s not uncommon to find a Manchester mix among groups of rescues, and they make excellent additions to myriad families — even families of one. Manchester terriers are loyal, devoted, and enjoy life.

The Two Different Types Of Manchester Terriers

There are two types of Manchester terriers: standard and toy. In the days of old, canine aficionados classified them as separate breeds. Today, cynophilists see them as two different size options within the same breed.

Owning A Manchester Terrier: Three Pros And Cons

Easy Grooming

Manchester terriers are a “wash and go” breed with minimal shedding. Since their coats are short, they don’t require multiple weekly brushings. An occasional bath with a doggie shampoo is usually sufficient unless your pup is a mud hound.
Yap Alert

If you’re in search of a dog that isn’t yappy, Manchester terriers may not be for you. They’re exceptionally alert and will deploy warning barks in response to abnormal occurrences or sounds.
Very Adaptable

Manchester terriers aren’t precious about their living conditions. Of course, it should be clean and comfortable, but they’re equally at home in an apartment or a mansion.
Stimulation Needs

To remain happy and amenable, Manchester terriers need at least two brisk walks a day plus mental stimulation. A daily jaunt at the doggie park is also recommended. Humans without the time to fulfill these needs should probably look at a different breed.
Loyal and Smart

Since Manchester terriers are very loyal and smart, they make excellent companions. Whether you’re playing at the doggie park or cuddling on the couch, a Manchester terrier will just be happy to have you around.

Remember the smart kid from high school who was always brewing up trouble? That’s the way of the Manchester terrier. If they get bored, they will find mischief — or conjure some up of their own making!

Size And Weight

As we’ve mentioned, Manchester terriers come in two sizes: toy and standard. However, the breed doesn’t exhibit height and weight “sexual dimorphism,” meaning the size range for both sexes is identical. Some sources may stipulate slight proportional differences between the ladies and gents, but the findings are negligible and inconsistent.

Standard Manchester Terrier Size And Weight

Standard-size Manchester terriers weigh between 12 and 22 pounds and stand between 15 and 16 inches at the shoulder. Puppies reach full size at 12 months.

Toy Manchester Terrier Size And Weight

Toy-size Manchester terriers weigh between six and 11 pounds and stand between 10 to 12 inches at the shoulder. Puppies are full-size after a year.

Height (Standard)15 to 16 inches
Height (Toy)10 to 12 inches
Weight (Standard)12 to 22 pounds, fully grown
Weight (Toy)Under 12 pounds, fully grown

Common Health Issues

The breed’s most marked health issue is juvenile cardiomyopathy.


The Manchester terrier community’s most prominent health threat is juvenile cardiomyopathy, a fatal disease that affects heart muscles. In recent years, Manchester terrier breeders have been working diligently with vets to develop a genetic test for the condition.

Additionally, Manchesters have greyhound ancestry. As such, surgeons should be careful administering anesthesia. The breed also may suffer from poor eyesight and patellar luxation, aka “loose knees.” Thyroid problems may also present themselves.

The National Breed Club suggests the following tests for Manchester terriers:

  • Von Willebrand’s Disease DNA Test
  • Ophthalmologist Exam
  • Thyroid Evaluation

Common Manchester terrier health problems include:

  • Juvenile cardiomyopathy
  • Poor eyesight
  • Loose knees
  • Thyroid imbalances

Manchester terrier rescues may be a mix. If so, different ailments may manifest. It’s always wise to take rescues to a vet ASAP for a complete blood workup. It’s worth the price to ensure your fur baby has all the meds and shots he or she needs!

Temperament And Behavior

With their sleek, watchful, and athletic traits, Manchester terriers are a great personality fit for active families and individuals. However, people thinking about welcoming one into their homes should understand the breed is known for its “ratting” behavior. In other words, they like to hunt small animals! So if you don’t want a dog that chases and kills mice and vermin, Manchesters are probably not the pups for you. On the flip side, apartment dwellers or rural residents who’d love an in-house mouser may welcome the behavior.

Besides their athleticism and anti-vermin instincts, Manchester terriers have loads of other desirable traits. Not only are they brilliant, but they’re devoted to their masters, love to have fun, and are appropriately discerning. Unlike other terrier breeds with dour personalities, Manchesters are eager-to-please and happy-go-lucky. So long as you do your part to keep them active and happy, a better best friend you will not find.

It’s important to understand, though, that a genetic legacy mix in any dog may alter its behavior and traits. Plus, temperament and behavior traits aren’t a guarantee. Like humans, all dogs have unique personalities.

How To Take Care Of Manchester Terriers

People researching how to care for Manchester terriers, from puppy to old age, will be glad to discover that it’s a relatively healthy breed that requires little grooming maintenance.

The Best Dog Food For Manchester Terriers

Five Manchester Terriers sitting in a row in a field

High-protein diets are best for this breed, both puppy and adult.

©Lourdes Photography/

The ideal diet for Manchester terriers is dependent on activity level, age, health, and weight. Plus, one’s budget should also weigh heavily in the calculation.

Manchester terrier puppy food: The hearts of some Manchester terrier puppies may be slightly weaker. To help mitigate this potential health hiccup, vets recommend high-protein puppy diets. Quality meats should be the main ingredients and the formula composed specifically for “growth,” “puppies,” or “all life stages.” For puppies of all breeds, foods with higher calcium content are a good idea, as it helps their bones grow strong, which can prevent problems down the road.

Manchester terrier adult dog food: Adult Manchester terriers do best with high-protein foods. Avoiding recipes with lots of filler is wise. It’s simply not as nutritious. However, because of their active tendencies, Manchester terriers do well with blends that incorporate protein, fats, and carbohydrates. As a general rule of thumb, make sure whatever food you buy is approved by the Association of American Feed Control Officials.

Something to consider is the breed’s propensity for juvenile cardiomyopathy. This makes it extra important to stay in touch with the vet about your dog’s health and nutrition. Get up-to-date on the link between canine heart failure and legumes, and aim for legume-free dog food.

At A-Z Animals, we feel the best dog food for Manchester Terriers is Wellness CORE Dry Dog Food with Wholesome Grains, High Protein Dog Food, and Original Recipe.

What makes this legume-free chicken and turkey recipe perfect for this breed is the natural glucosamine and chondroitin for sturdy joints, plus enough calcium to maintain strong bones and cartilage. Plus, taurine has the dual advantage of improving heart and eye health. The high-protein fuels all your dog’s antics.

Check out Wellness CORE High Protein Dog Food on Chewy and Amazon.

Best High Protein Dog Food
Wellness CORE Wholesome Grains Original Recipe High Protein Dry Dog Food
  • Turkey and chicken meal and deboned chicken with wholesome grains
  • 34% protein promotes lean body mass and muscle tone
  • Omega fatty acids support healthy skin and coat
  • Glucosamine for strong joints, probiotics for digestive health and taurine for a healthy heart
  • No poultry by-products, wheat, wheat gluten, corn, soy, artificial colors, or preservatives

Check Chewy Check Amazon

Maintenance And Grooming

One of the reasons Manchester terriers make great companions is their minimal grooming needs. Beloved as a “wash and wear” dog, they only need occasional baths every couple of months. And while Manchesters do shed, it’s infrequent.

To keep your Manchester pup looking dapper, a weekly wipe down with a damp cloth followed by a quick brushing with a hound glove does the trick.


What makes Manchester terriers so lovable can also make training them difficult. Their intelligence can morph into stubbornness, and their fun-loving personalities may interfere with training time. However, compared to other terrier breeds, Manchesters fall on the more manageable end of the scale.


Keeping Manchester terriers happy and healthy requires at least two walks a day. If you have time to throw a ball around the backyard, that’s also great. However, terriers don’t need wide-open spaces. The smooth-haired athletes thrive in apartments and farmhouses alike.


Besides screening for juvenile cardiomyopathy, a potentially fatal heart condition, Manchester terrier puppies don’t have specific care needs. However, they’re active and need more mental stimulation than many other breeds. Without it, you may come home one day to find your home ripped to shreds. To put it bluntly: if you don’t have the time and resources to commit a few hours a day to a Manchester terrier, you may want to consider another breed. Otherwise, your furniture may pay the price!

Early training is essential for Manchester terrier puppies. They can grow up to be overly aggressive when not socialized at a young age.

Manchester Terrier puppy

The puppies of this breed need more mental stimulation than many other breeds.


Manchester Terriers And Children

Are Manchester terriers good with children? It depends.

Puppies trained from an early age typically do well in family settings. Moreover, the breed’s athletic nature is a super fit for active clans. Plus, they’re fun-loving and playful — both inside and out — which is great for kids.

However, an untrained Manchester terrier may not be the best fit for families with babies, as they can be a bit stubborn and aggressive. At the very least, Manchesters should never be left alone with babies.

Dogs Similar To Manchester Terriers

Manchester terriers are most similar to rat terriers, bull terriers, and whippets.

  • Rat Terriers: Both rat terriers and Manchester terriers are superb vermin hunters with smooth-haired coats.
  • Bull Terriers: Like rat terriers and Manchester terriers, bull terriers are a smooth-haired breed. Behavior-wise, Manchesters, and bulls also have a lot in common. Both are smart and fun-loving.
  • Whippets: The original Manchester terriers were conceived by crossing terriers with whippets. As such, the two breeds have similar looks and temperaments.

Popular names for Manchester terriers include:

  • Ronaldo, after the famous Manchester United forward
  • Bonsai
  • Rocky
  • Cody
  • Winston

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What's the right dog for you?

Dogs are our best friends but which breed is your perfect match?


If you have kids or existing dogs select:

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The lower energy the better.
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About average energy.
I want a dog that I have to chase after constantly!
All energy levels are great -- I just love dogs!
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About the Author

Melissa Bauernfeind was born in NYC and got her degree in Journalism from Boston University. She lived in San Diego for 10 years and is now back in NYC. She loves adventure and traveling the world with her husband but always misses her favorite little man, "P", half Chihuahua/half Jack Russell, all trouble. She got dive-certified so she could dive with the Great White Sharks someday and is hoping to swim with the Orcas as well.

Manchester Terrier FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

How much do Manchester terriers cost to own?

The price range for a purebred Manchester Terrier is between $600 and $1,000. Their food and treats run about $80 to $120 a month. Grooming costs are negligible for Manchester terriers because they have short coats.

Are Manchester terriers good with kids?

Manchester terriers that are trained early do very well with kids.

How Long Do Manchester Terriers Live?

Manchester terriers live between 15 and 17 years.

What Is a Manchester Terrier?

A Manchester terrier is a dog breed that comes in two sizes: standard and toy. They’re intelligent, athletic, and loyal.

Are Manchester Terriers Good Family Dogs?

If Manchester terriers are trained early, they make phenomenal family pets.

Can Manchester Terriers Be Left Alone?

If there are things around the house to occupy them, Manchester terriers can be left alone for the day. However, they do develop separation anxiety if their human stays away for extended periods. Manchester terriers like routine.

Is a Manchester Terrier the Same as a Miniature Pinscher?

No, miniature pinschers and Manchester terriers are two different breeds — though they look remarkably similar.

How Much Do Manchester Terriers Cost?

The price of purebred Manchester terriers runs between $600 and $1,000.

What are the differences between Manchester terriers and Miniature Pinschers?

The main differences between Manchester terriers and miniature pinschers are size, color, build, and temperament.

What are the differences between a Manchester Terrier and a Doberman Pinscher?

The main differences between a Manchester Terrier and a Doberman Pinscher are breed origin, appearance, size, hair type and color, and temperament.

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  1. American Kennel Club / Accessed April 3, 2021
  2. Your Pure Bred Puppy / Accessed April 3, 2021
  3. Vet Street / Accessed April 3, 2021