Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier: What Are the Differences?

Written by Kyle Glatz
Published: September 26, 2022
© A-Z-Animals.com
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The names of dog breeds can create a fair amount of confusion for those unfamiliar with naming conventions. For example, a toy fox terrier refers to one specific breed. Yet, the term fox terrier refers to two different breeds. Not only can it be challenging to talk about the fox terrier as a single dog, but it’s even harder to compare it to another breed. Yet, that’s what we’re going to do today. We’re going to compare and contrast the toy fox terrier vs fox terrier and show you what makes them unique.

Still, as we examine these breeds, we’re going to provide background information on how the toy fox terrier measures up to both breeds called fox terriers in the present day.

Comparing a Toy Fox Terrier and a Fox Terrier

The toy fox terrier is smaller than the fox terrier, weighing up to 9 pounds and standing 11.5 inches tall.

©iStock.com/Farinosa

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Toy Fox TerrierFox Terrier
SizeWeight: 4-9 pounds
Height: 8-11.5 inches
Length: 12-17 inches
Weight: 13-19 pounds
Height: 10-15.5 inches
Length: 19-23 inches
Morphology– Tall, erect, V-shaped ears
– Wedge-shaped head with a rounded skull
– Short and smooth coat
– Somewhat muscular
– Short tail
– Wedge-shaped head
– Longer snout than toy foxes
– V-shaped ears that are erect in smooth fox terriers and button ears in wire fox terriers
Smooth fox terrier has a short, satiny coat
– Wire fox terriers have a double coat or medium, wiry hair
Colors– Black, white, tan, and chocolate
– Typically, they are mostly white with patterns of colors
– White, black, and tan, for both breeds
– White with any two or three colors for both breeds  
Traits– Very friendly towards everyone
– Known for barking often unless otherwise trained
– Very playful and energetic
– Needs plenty of things to do
– Wire fox terriers are friendlier to strangers, but smooth fox terriers are somewhat friendly
– Both breeds bark quite often, but they can be trained
– Both dogs have a lot of energy, and they like to be busy
Country of Origin– The United States
– Often kept as companions
– Used to hunt foxes by climbing into their dens
– Great Britain
– Used for fox hunting
– Frequently kept as companions

The Key Differences Between a Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier

The main differences between a toy fox terrier and a fox terrier can be found in their breed types, size, and morphology. The toy fox terrier is smaller than the fox terrier, weighing up to 9 pounds and standing 11.5 inches tall, while a fox terrier can weigh up to 19 pounds and stands up to 15.5 inches tall.

Also, while the toy fox terrier is a single breed of dog, the fox terrier is actually two breeds of dog, the smooth fox terrier and the wire fox terrier.

Lastly, the toy fox terrier has short, smooth hair, while one of the fox terrier breeds has medium-length, wiry hair. These are the primary differences in the breeds, but they’re not the only ones. As a result, we will explore more of their unique qualities in greater detail below and demonstrate the uniqueness of these animals.

Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier: Size

The average fox terrier weighs between 13 and 19 pounds, stands up to 15.5 inches tall, and measures 19 to 23 inches long.

©iStock.com/NINA KULAGINA

Fox terriers are larger than toy fox terriers by quite a larger margin. The toy fox terrier only weighs between 4 and 9 pounds, stands 8 to 11.5 inches tall, and measures between 12 and 17 inches. However, the average fox terrier weighs between 13 and 19 pounds, stands up to 15.5 inches tall, and measures between 19 and 23 inches long.

While fox terrier breeds are not large dogs, they’re bigger than the toy fox terrier.  

Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier: Morphology

The toy fox terrier has a short, smooth coat.

©iStock.com/Farinosa

The toy fox terrier and the fox terrier breeds have many physical similarities, but their fur, snouts, and ears differ slightly. The toy fox terrier has a short, smooth coat, and so does the smooth fox terrier. However, the wire fox terrier has a medium-length and wiry fur coat.

The snouts on the fox terrier breeds are longer than those of the miniature toy fox terrier. Also, while all the breeds have V-shaped ears, the wiry fox terrier has button ears as opposed to the erect ears of the others.

These elements of the dogs’ morphology and size can be used to differentiate them.

Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier: Colors

Fox terriers can be white, black, and tan only.

©iStock.com/slowmotiongli

The toy fox terrier is found in black, white, tan, and chocolate colors. They’re usually white with any of the other colors as a pattern. However, the fox terriers can be white, black, and tan only, so they lack the chocolate color of the toy fox terrier. Moreover, they can be white with one or two of the other colors mixed into their fur. Color is not a great way to tell them apart, but it can be helpful.

Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier: Traits

Toy fox terriers are very vocal dogs that will alert their owners to the presence of strangers.

©iStock.com/Farinosa

Toy fox terriers are known for being very friendly toward people. However, they are very vocal dogs that will alert their owners to the presence of strangers. Fox terriers are the same but may become aggressive toward outsiders unless they see their owner welcoming them into the home. The size and innate hunting behaviors in these dogs could make them more capable of showing aggression to outsiders.

Both breeds can be trained, though. Also, they need to have something to do while their owners are not engaged with them, or they will tear up your home.

Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier: Country of Origin

While fox terriers still see infrequent use as hunting dogs, they are kept as companion pets like the toy fox terrier.

©iStock.com/DevidDO

The toy fox terrier was bred in the United States, but the fox terrier comes from Great Britain. The toy fox terrier was once used to flush hunt rats, squirrels, and other animals. The fox terrier was bred to assist in hunting foxes.

While fox terriers still see infrequent use as hunting dogs, they are kept as companion pets like the toy fox terrier.  

All in all, toy fox terriers are similar to fox terriers. However, their fur coats, ears, colors, use, and size sets them apart. Now that you know the unique qualities of these terriers, it should be easy for you to tell them apart.  

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Toy Fox Terrier vs Fox Terrier
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About the Author

I'm a freelance writer with 8 years of experience. I've written in a variety of niches such as video games, animals, and managed service providers. I graduated from Rowan University in 2014 with degrees in English and Education. When I'm not working, I enjoy playing video games, reading, and writing for fun.

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Sources
  1. ScienceDirect, Available here: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0743016799000510
  2. The American Kennel Club, Available here: https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/toy-fox-terrier/
  3. The American Kennel Club, Available here: https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/wire-fox-terrier/
  4. The American Kennel Club, Available here: https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/smooth-fox-terrier/