One of the largest terriers, though still only a medium-sized dog, the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is an alert and steady companion. He combines a happy outlook with a courageous spirit.
The breed has been known in Ireland for more than 200 years, and is possibly the forerunner of the Kerry Blue Terrier. Over that time he served as a herding and guarding dog and undertook the typical terrier duties of rat control.
The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier enjoys games, especially with children. Most take pleasure in meeting strangers, whether people or other animals. He will greet friends with great joy, and loves to go places with the family. The Wheaten is a quick learner, with a steady mind, and likes plenty of exercise every day.
His soft and wavy wheat-colored coat makes him unique among all terriers. It is a single coat that grows longer on his chin and over his eyes, giving him a scruffy, working appearance.
Excerpts from the Standard
General Appearance: A medium-sized, hardy, squarish sporting terrier, with a soft, silky, gently waving coat of warm wheaten color; possessing a steady disposition; alert and happy.
Size, Proportion, and Substance: Height--males 18 to 19 inches at the withers; females, 17 to 18 inches. Weight--males, 35 to 40 pounds; females, 30 to 35 pounds.
The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier puppy is born with a black coat. The coat stays dark and straight the first year. In the second year it becomes very light, and doesn't yet have waves. After two years, it begins to have just the right color and waviness. The color should be wheaten--the shade of wheat ripening in a sunny field. He has brown eyes and a black nose.
Excerpted from The Complete Dog Book For Kids © 1996, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.