Sealyham Terrier

Sealyham Terrier


The Sealyham Terrier is a strong, low to the ground dog. The head is long and broad in proportion with the body. The skull is slightly domed with a slight indent running down between the eyebrows joining with the muzzle. It has a moderate stop. The nose is black with large nostrils. The teeth meet in a scissors bite and the jaw is square. The oval, wide-set eyes are dark. The ears are wide, hanging down, folded forward and carried against the cheeks. The tail is carried high and is customarily docked. Note: docking tails is illegal in most parts of Europe. The wiry, weather-resistant, double coat is solid white, sometimes with lemon, tan or badger-colored markings on the head and ears.


The Sealyham is affectionate, loving, loyal, independent and spirited. It is a brave little dog. It has been descried as “the most beautiful union between cheerfulness and courage.” Sealyhams are not as rowdy as some of the other terrier breeds. They are somewhat reserved with strangers, fairly independent and generally good with other pets. Be sure you socialize this dog well and be his pack leader. Do not allow this sweet dog to develop Small Dog Syndrome, human induced behaviors, where the dog believes he is pack leader to humans. This can lead to many behavior problems, including, but not limited to separation anxiety, dog-aggression and obsessive barking. If this dog sees himself a stronger minded then the humans around him he will become stubborn, as he will believe he needs to make up his own rules. This breed needs an owner who has good human to canine communication skills and can be calm but consistently firm with the dog. The negative traits brought by allowing your dog to be pack leader are not breed traits, but behaviors which are the result of how the human treats the dog. This breed is a little difficult to train, but they can hunt, track and are good watchdogs. Sealyhams are good at catching mice and rats. They are best with older children who are considerate of dogs, simply because most small dogs are treated in such a way that they develop varying degrees of small dog syndrome. Sealyhams who have 100% pack leaders, receiving rules to follow, limits to what they are allowed to do and daily pack walks can be good with all children. Sealyhams are “pack” dogs. They appreciate being a key part of a family and welcome companionship with other dogs.


Height: Not more than 12 inches (30 cm)
Weight: Maximum 20 pounds (9 kg)

Health Problems

Fairly healthy.

Living Conditions

Good for apartment living. They are relatively inactive indoors and will do okay without a yard. Prefer cool weather.


This breed needs a daily walk. Play will take care of a lot of their exercise needs, however, as with all breeds, play will not fulfill their primal instinct to walk. Dogs that do not get to go on daily walks are more likely to display behavior problems. They will also enjoy a good romp in a safe, open area off lead, such as a large, fenced-in yard. The breed is a low-energy dog that makes a good walking companion. The overriding characteristic about Sealyhams is that they are low energy, couch potatoes. They are not “busy,” not “active” and therefore make a low-key companion.

Life Expectancy

About 15 years


Professional trimming or stripping is needed. They have a medium-long coat and their tails are customarily docked. They shed little to no hair.


The Sealyham was developed in Wales in the middle of the 19th century by Captain John Edwards. He crossed the Dandie Dinmont Terrier, West Highland White Terrier, Corgi, Wirehaired Fox Terrier and the Bull Terrier to produce the Sealyham we know today. The dogs were developed to go to ground after badger, fox and otter. The white coat helped the hunters distinguish the dog from the pray. The Sealyham Terrier was recognized by the AKC in 1911, and the American Sealyham Terrier Club was founded in 1913.