Manchester Terrier Breed Information and Buying advice

Manchester Terrier

Are You Looking to Buy or Adopt a Manchester Terrier?

Quick Manchester Terrier Facts

Average Size of Adult
Small (2/5)
Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy Puppy
Grooming Requirement
Low (1/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Average Life Span
14-16 years (6/8)
Exercise Requirements
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
High (3/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Low (1/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Child friendly
Yes (1/2)
Medium (2/3)
Puppy Puppy Puppy
Breed Group
Terrier (4/8)
No (2/2)
Once called the “Gentleman’s Terrier,” the small yet elegant Manchester Terrier is a rare sight in the UK. Many people may mistake them for a miniature Doberman Pinscher, but they’re actually a terrier breed derived from the Black and Tan Terrier along with a pinch of Whippet. This breed was used for ratting and later for bloodsport, but is now a loving companion in need of good homes and caring owners. They’re a vulnerable breed in the UK, which makes them a rare sight, but not for their lack of elegant looks or wonderful temperament. There are many great reasons to purchase a Manchester Terrier puppy, but prospective owners should also be aware of their unique features so that they can appreciate them and provide them with a good home.   

Why Manchester Terriers are Great

Some highlights of Manchester Terriers:
  1. Sociable: this breed is affectionate, caring, and plenty of fun to be around.
  2. Grooming: Manchester Terriers have short coats that require little in terms of grooming and maintenance.
  3. Adaptable: as a small breed, Manchester Terriers can get along well in small homes and also apartments in both rural and urban settings.
  4. First-time owners: this breed is an ideal choice of puppy for first-time owners.
  5. Shedding: this breed doesn’t shed much hair at all, making cleaning all the easier.

Things to Consider when Looking at Manchester Terriers for Sale

Some downsides to the Manchester Terrier:
  1. Rarity: owing to their classification as a vulnerable breed, Manchester Terriers may be difficult and/or costly to acquire.
  2. Exercise: this excitable breed requires plenty of exercise in order to remain healthy and stimulated.
  3. Isolation: as with many terrier breeds, Manchester Terriers don’t tolerate being left alone for very long and may engage in destructive behaviour.
  4. Prey drive: small pets and rodents will certainly trigger this breed’s innately high prey drive. Supervision is required at all times.

History of the Manchester Terrier

As with many terrier breeds, it’s impossible to separate the importance of the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain from the history of the Manchester Terrier. One need not be a historian to understand the role of rat and vermin chasing in towns such as Manchester as they grew into industrialised cities. Their small size and keen senses allowed them to navigate confined spaces and catch their prey, thereby improving the health and safety of the inhabitants of these growing urban centres. As opposed to most other terrier breeds, however, the Manchester Terrier did not originally serve as a rodent-catching breed on farms and rural homesteads before the Industrial Revolution. It was bred from the Black and Tan Terrier as well as the Whippet (most likely) solely for the purpose of catching vermin in industrial centres. Unfortunately, their numbers declined so significantly in the past century that the Kennel Club of Great Britain has placed the Manchester Terrier on their list of vulnerable breeds. They remain a popular and well-known breed in their native England but are scarce in number currently.  


Resembling in many ways the Doberman Pinscher, the Manchester Terrier is a small, smooth-haired terrier breed. Compact and elegant, this breed can be recognised by its long head, neck, and long, tapered tail that give it a miniature Doberman Pinscher-like look. This breed resembles in many ways the Black and Tan Terrier as well, from which the Manchester Terrier was bred.  

How big is the Manchester Terrier?

Manchester Terriers are small-sized dogs. Males grow on average to 41 cm in height, whilst females can grow up to 38 cm high.  

How heavy is a Manchester Terrier?

Fully-grown adult male and female Manchester Terriers weigh between 5.4-10 kg on average.  

What colour is the Manchester Terrier?

The following colours are commonly accepted for Manchester Terriers:
  • Jet black;
  • Rich mahogany.
Tan markings are common and are acceptable provided that they are clearly defined from the coat’s natural colour.  


Again, Manchester Terriers exhibit differences from most other terrier breeds in terms of temperament. Whilst most other terriers can be quite stoic, the Manchester Terrier can be described as sociable, affectionate, and courageous. Furthermore, this breed looks keen, alert, and tough despite its small stature. Nevertheless, Manchester Terriers are a high-energy breed that requires proper training and supervision in order to curb any potentially naughty behaviour. They are a good choice for first-time owners, but they’ll need plenty of attention and affection in order to remain obedient and well-behaved as they grow into adulthood.  

Do Manchester Terriers make good guard dogs?

This breed is a poor choice of guard dog, but they do make good watchdogs due to their alert and aloof disposition.  

Do Manchester Terriers bark a lot?

Some Manchester Terriers tend to bark often, and if left unchecked, may bark compulsively. Curb this behaviour by spending plenty of quality time with your Manchester Terrier, especially as puppies, and reward them for positive behaviour to discourage excessive barking.  

Are Manchester Terriers easy to train?

Manchester Terriers are easy to train. As with many other terrier breeds, however, they may sometimes show signs of stubbornness.  

Are Manchester Terriers playful?

This breed is known to be playful, especially as puppies. Many terriers thrive on social contact and love to please their owners and this includes plenty of play time.  

Are Manchester Terriers good with children?

As a sociable breed, Manchester Terriers tend to get along quite well with children of all ages. Of course, younger children and toddlers should be supervised in order to prevent any boisterous play that may accidentally harm them.  

Are Manchester Terriers good with other pets?

Manchester Terriers tend to get along well with other dogs, but they are likely to chase around cats and other small pets, especially rodents, due to their high natural prey drive.  

Can I leave a Manchester Terrier alone?

Most terriers don’t tolerate being left alone for very long and may develop naughty behaviour if they become bored or feel neglected, such as digging up flowerbeds. Manchester Terriers can tolerate short periods of isolation.  

Do Manchester Terriers like water?

Some Manchester Terriers love the water and will jump in for a swim the first chance they get. As with all puppies, introduce them to water on their own terms in order to avoid frightening them.  


How long do Manchester Terriers live? 

Generally, Manchester Terriers are expected to live anywhere from 14-16 years.  

How much exercise does a Manchester Terrier need?

Manchester Terriers have high exercise requirements. At least an hour per day should be spent outdoors with your puppy, but don’t strain them too much whilst they’re still puppies. As they grow older, they’ll benefit most from a brisk morning walk and plenty of rigorous exercise and dog sports in the evening.  

What are a Manchester Terrier’s common health issues?

Manchester Terriers are prone to the following common health issues:
  • Glaucoma;
  • Secondary glaucoma;
  • Ehlers-Danlos syndrome;
  • Von Willebrands disease.


How much space do I need for a Manchester Terrier? 

Not much space is required for a Manchester Terrier to remain happy and healthy, but small houses are preferable to apartments, particularly those with gardens. Due to their high exercise requirements, access to a garden or nearby park is ideal.  

What should I feed my Manchester Terrier?

A fully-grown Manchester Terrier should be fed ¼ to 1 cup of high-quality dog food every day, divided into two meals. Adjust as necessary to promote good health and to prevent overfeeding.  

How much grooming do Manchester Terriers need?

Manchester Terriers don’t require much grooming or maintenance. Frequent brushing can keep their coats healthy. Frequent visits to the veterinarian aren’t necessary, but occasional checking for infections in the eyes and ears are always recommended.   

Do Manchester Terriers shed?

This breed doesn’t shed much at all. This makes cleaning up after them quite easy.  

Average Costs

How much does it cost to keep a Manchester Terrier?

As a rough guide in pricing:  Cost to buy: roughly £700-800 for a well-bred Manchester Terrier puppy Other costs (Vet, Food etc): £50-80 per month  

Specific Buying Guide

You can read our general buying guide here, with the most important thing being going to view your Manchester Terrier puppy, seeing it with its mother, and checking the quality of the breeder.  More specifically, here is some Manchester Terrier puppy buying advice:
  1. Manchester Terriers are listed as a vulnerable breed in the UK by the Kennel Club of Great Britain. This means that less than 300 are being registered, and as such they may prove to be difficult to acquire. Furthermore, their rarity may command higher prices on the market until their numbers increase once again.
  2. Although this breed is known to be relatively quite healthy, their rarity may encourage some breeders of questionable repute to engage in unethical breeding practices which may result in unhealthy, undesirable puppies. Ensure that any prospective puppy is healthy and obtain the opinion of a veterinarian if any doubts arise. Patience is key when shopping for a healthy puppy, particularly a vulnerable breed. 

Other Reading, Adopting Manchester Terrier Puppies and Rescue Organisations

A big thank you to the following sources who helped to shape this article: The British Manchester Terrier Club:  American Manchester Terrier Club:  Canadian Manchester Terrier Club:  Kennel Club of Great Britain:  UK Dog Trust: Blue Cross: