For the unfortunate individual who loves dogs but not the wheezing and the puffy eyes that come with allergies to pet dander, curly haired breeds like the Bedlington are usually a first choice. Dogs that have curly hair tend to shed less or not at all and require little in the way of grooming. However, while some individuals are allergic to dog hair, a majority of allergy sufferers are actually allergic to pet dander and dog saliva. The dander of an animal refers to the small flakes of dead skin that can get lodged in carpeting, furniture or bed linens. Because dogs often lick their fur, it is very easy to come in contact with their saliva. For these reasons, the Bedlington Terrier has been moved off of the allergy free list to being categorized as a low dander breed.
Though the breed is commonly referred to as easy to train, owners would be wise to keep in mind that the Bedlington Terrier was first and foremost bred as a working dog. Unlike the companions of today, dogs bred for work were often left to chase down their own food and find their own shelter. This resulted in a developed sense of independence in the Bedlington that can at times pose a problem for owners. As many have come to find, an owner must keep their Bedlington on a leash or risk watching the dog chase off after other dogs or scurrying animals with reckless abandon. Regardless of their owner's demands, the Bedlington will only return upon deeming it necessary; but not before then.
The Bedlington is good with children; however, even the most well trained and compliant of this breed will have at least one incident of a defensive reaction in their lifetime, if not more. A defensive reaction is the natural aggressive response to harsh training tactics, teasing, or events where a tail or paw is accidentally stepped on. As former pit and baiting dogs, it is only natural for the Bedlington to inflict pain when it senses acute pain. A Bedlington who feels its boundaries have been breached with harsh physical correction are likely to snap back. The breed is not a good fit for very small children who still like to yank on ears or pull on tails. They will instead do best with children ten years of age or older.
The active Bedlington will of course need plenty of room to exercise. They enjoy taking part in a number of activities and a good sized yard will be necessary to keep them happy. Yet it is important to never underestimate the tenacity of the breed. Though they are somewhat small and lean, the Bedlington can easily clear a fence with relative ease. This is especially true when the breed is bored and they suddenly decide to take it upon themselves to go exploring. Owners would be wise to not wait until the first escape to heighten fences. Fences should also be reinforced deep into the ground. Where the Bedlington cannot go over, he or she will next try to go under.