Airedale Terrier Breed Information and Buying advice

Airedale Terrier

Are You Looking to Buy or Adopt a Airedale Terrier?

Quick Airedale Terrier Facts

Average Size of Adult
Large (4/5)
Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy
Grooming Requirement
Medium (2/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Average Life Span
10-12 years (4/8)
Exercise Requirements
Medium (2/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Low (1/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Child friendly
Yes (1/2)
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Breed Group
Terrier (4/8)
Yes (1/2)

Why Airedale Terriers are great

The Airedale Terrier is known as the King of the Terriers, and is the biggest of the terrier breed of dog. Airedale Terrier dogs and puppies are very unique and have incredible scenting and smell abilities. As a family pet, or working with police, they are renowned for being hard-working, good with children and are not known to be aggressive. Some highlights:

  1. The Airedale Terrier doesn’t shed much

  2. Airedale terriers are extremely playful at all ages

  3. They are great friends and companions and thrive in family homes

  4. They are good with children of all ages

  5. They make excellent watchdogs

Things to consider when looking at Airedale Terriers for Sale

As with all dogs and puppies, Airedale Terriers have some downsides which must be considered before purchasing. Some downsides to the Airedale Terrier:

  1. Being a terrier, they have a natural prey drive and should not be trusted around small pets

  2. They can be a lot of work in grooming

  3. Airedale Terriers are like puppies at all ages- very high energy! Lots of exercise is needed.

History of Airedale Terriers

Airedale Terriers are native to England, Yorkshire more specifically, and even more specifically the Aire River Valley. In the 19th Century, mill workers crossed various terrier types and wanted to create a new breed of dog that had enough stamina to handle a full days hunting, could keep up with horses and would be occasionally tough enough to kill foxes, ferrets and the like. The Airedale Terrier dogs and puppies increased in popularity rapidly in World War 1. This was mainly down to their larger sizes, scenting ability and brave, courageous personalities. They were often used as military dogs and carrying important messages to soldiers who were fighting on the front line. The Airedale Terrier breed was recognised first by the Kennel Club in 1886 and is now popular as a family pet all around in the world, including the UK.  


Airedale Terriers are the largest of the terrier group, and are very distinct looking with a strong stance and black and tan colours. Not at all what you would expect from a terrier. The Airedale has small dark eyes with a strong looking jaw, and strong and powerful looking front legs.  

How big is the Airedale Terrier?

When they become full-grown dogs, the Airedale Terrier will be around 59-62 cm tall at the withers.  

How heavy is an Airedale Terrier?

The female Airedale Terrier will be smaller at between 18-20kg, with males around 23-29kg.  

What Colour is the Airedale Terrier?

The Airedale Terrier comes in Black and Gold or Black and Tan. Their topcoats are dense and wiry and have an undercoat which is much softer.  


Do Airedale Terriers make good guard dogs?

They are natural watchdogs and will be quick to let their owners know when there are strangers about, or something untoward. They will often not attack or cause damage to an intruder but will be first to attempt to frighten them.  

Do Airedale Terriers bark a lot?

Some Airedales will enjoy barking- but like any breed- ensure to affirm who is boss at an early age to curb this. Some puppies will only bark when something seems untoward, which is their natural watchdog abilities coming through.  

Are Airedale Terriers easy to train?

The Airedale is a smart, intelligent dog and in the right trainers' hands can be a quick learner. They are energetic and need a lot of mental stimulation, but as long as you can dedicate enough time to your puppy, the Airedale Terrier is a good choice for first-time owners.  

Are Airedale Terriers playful?

Airedale Terriers are well known for being playful at all ages, even puppy-like into their old age! They can be mischievous and very playful, and learn quickly, meaning they will constantly test the boundaries. Make sure you have enough time to play with your Airedale and exercise them.  

Are Airedale Terriers good with children and other pets?

Airedale Terriers are fantastic in a family environment with children of any ages. They’re a large dog so be careful of knocking children over, but they will only be accidents. When it comes to small pets, Airedale Terriers have a large prey drive, being of the terrier breeds. Keep an eye out around small pets, it’s what they’re bred for and have instincts to catch.  

Can I leave an Airedale Terrier Alone?

They do not mind being left to their own, as long as it isn’t for too long. They’re loving family dogs, so do what is fair!  


How long do Airedale Terriers live?

The life expectancy is around 10-13 years for the Airedale Terrier  

How much exercise does an Airedale Terrier need?

The Airedale is a very energetic dog, and need to be given around 2 hours of exercise a day. Your Airedale Terrier Puppy should not be exercised too much, however, as it may damage its growth.  

What are Airedale Terriers Common health issues?

The important conditions to ensure your Airedale is tested for include:

  • Hip dysplasia (or Elbow)

  • Autoimmune thyroiditis

  • Heart disease

  • Eye issues



How much space do I need for an Airedale Terrier?

The Airedale is best suited to someone who can offer a secure garden space, of almost any space. Being a Terrier, they’re independent and they love nothing more than to patrol and feel like they own a space themselves.  

What should I feed my Airedale Terrier?

The Airedale is not known to be a fussy eater, but do not opt for low quality. They are active and thus need lots of nutrition to sustain their activity. Stick to the breeders feeding schedule for your Airedale Terrier puppy. Once they get to 12 months old move them on to adult food consisting of both wet and dry. Because the Airedale Terrier can suffer from bloat, make sure you leave a good gap of exercise before and after feeding.  

How much grooming do Airedale Terriers need?

Airedale Terriers need regular grooming to ensure both skin and coat is kept well. We would suggest 3-4 times a week the coat is brushed, and the dog is seen by a professional groomer 2-3 times per year, with your Airedale Terrier puppy first going at 6 months old.  

Do Airedale Terriers shed?

They shed a little, mostly in spring and autumn, but are generally classed as low shedding.  

Average costs for an Airedale Terrier Puppy or Dog

How much does it cost to keep an Airedale Terrier?

As a rough guide in pricing: Cost to buy: roughly £500-1000  for a well-bred Airedale Terrier puppy Food, insurance, grooming: average to £60-100 per month  

Specific Buying Guide

You can read our general buying guide here (/advice-on-buying-a-puppy/), with the most important thing being going to view your Airedale Terrier Puppy, seeing it with its mother, and checking the quality of the breeder. More specifically, here is some Airedale Terrier  puppy buying advice:

  1. Airedales are popular dogs, make sure you don’t fall under any scams as many people will not be genuine breeders. Ensure the dam has not been over-worked, as they should only produce 4 litters and be a certain age to do so. Visit the links below if you want exact information from the clubs.


Adopting an Airedale Terrier, Other reading and Organisations

A big thank you to the following sources who helped to shape this article: