The Norfolk terrier and its close relative, the Norwich terrier, while tending to be relatively worry free in the health department, are especially prone to dental problems, more specifically, terrier owners and especially Norfolk lovers, are advised to watch out in particular for incorrect bite patterns. Terriers in particular are so inclined to this problem, in fact, that some people even misunderstand severe under bites to be one of the dog's identifying traits (to be fair, this is, sadly, arguably true, given the huge number of terrier house pets whose misinformed owners neglected the problem in the dog's early stages of development). While the severity of the problem with individual dogs is, luckily, rarely debilitating in any way and sometimes fairly inconsequential, any terrier owner or potential terrier owner, especially of the Norfolk persuasion, are advised not to take any chances, because the risk of the problem developing and growing out of hand is very real. [...]
Supposing you've decided to adopt a new dog, and furthermore, you've perhaps settled on adopting a terrier, the next question will probably be; which terrier is right for me? The various breeds of terrier all have common characteristics as well as a wide variety of traits and features that make them unique from one another. For this reason, the decision of exactly which breed of terrier to adopt is not one to be made hastily.
Being the smallest working breed of terrier, the Norfolk might just be the best choice for small apartment owners, however, a small apartment shouldn't default the decision to Norfolk, either. As said before, the decision has to be made carefully. Although, if after reading this, the potential future terrier owner is still set on a Norfolk, they should be advised that the Norwich terrier shares an almost identical definition save for the minor difference of their ears standing erect. [...]
So you've made your mind up and you're definitely adopting a Norfolk terrier, no bones about it. If you've done all your research on the dog's personal history, the dog's pedigree, the breed's characteristics, if you trust the person selling you the dog and have determined that your home is perfect for a Norfolk terrier, then the following should hopefully serve as a quick last minute checklist, a reminder of things to watch out for and keep in mind.
The Norfolk terrier is prone to a few health problems. Particularly heart diseases and hip dysplasia and especially prone to incorrect bite patterns. Any potential Norfolk terrier owner should be advised that their dog will need to be given regular checkups and attention to the end of early detection of common diseases and disorders. While the breed does tend to be relatively resistant to health concerns when compared to many other breeds, the Norfolk owner should nonetheless take the proper precautions. [...]
If you've already researched the dog's personal history, the characteristics of the breed and spent some time with your potential adoptee, and you've settled on picking up a Norfolk terrier, there are still some things to consider before you can be one hundred percent certain that the Norfolk is right for you and your home.
Luckily, the Norfolk terrier is surprisingly undemanding when it comes to some of the more important matters. Unlike several other sheep dog breeds, the Norfolk terrier, being the smallest of the working terrier breeds at an average of nine to ten inches and eleven to twelve pounds, needs very little room to play, exercise and run in. Along with some of the other small terriers (particularly their close relative, the Norwich terrier), the Norfolk terrier is quite popular for apartment and small house dwellers. In fact, the breed first came to popularity in the United States in the first half of the twentieth century when it became trendy for the cramped dormitory dwelling students at Cambridge University began keeping them as pets. [...]
The art of breeding, training, conditioning, grooming and finally, showing a dog in a competition is too in depth to give even a fair crash course in a single article, and any serious dog show hopefuls are advised to find an experienced mentor in their area and attend their fair share of dog shows in person to see first hand what defines a winning dog and a winning trainer. This article is neither experienced elder dog owner or first hand experience at a dog show, but regardless of this obvious handicap on the short form article's part, with luck, this one hopes to at least serve as a checklist of what it is judges are looking for, and what the American Kennel Club standard is, so that the reader will at least have a starting point to pursue further research from. [...]
The Norfolk terrier can be a loyal, hard working breed, but the potential Norfolk owner should be cautioned of a few issues that may rear their ugly heads during the training process, as well as potential problems that may come as a result of improper or neglectful training.
First of all, as is advised in any and every instance of bringing a new dog into your home, the individual dog's personal history should be investigated. As with any breed, an abusive or neglectful childhood may tragically damage the Norfolk terrier's potential for being trained as a healthy, happy family, show or work dog later in life, perhaps even irreparably. While a mistreated dog might not necessarily be completely unsalvageable, a dog with a rough history will almost certainly be quite a challenge, and training a troublesome dog is not at all recommended for first time or amateur trainers. [...]
The Norfolk terrier is naturally inclined towards a few odd habits, traits and qualities that are all its own. Many of these quirks and characteristics are perhaps owed to their natural tendency to be such brave, proud examples of what a dog can be, while others are simply owed to good genetics and their natural shape.
The dog is commonly, and correctly, thought to be almost perfectly balanced, making the Norfolk terrier an unbelievable agile breed of sport and working dog. No doubt the Norfolk's inclination towards balance comes in handy when the Norfolk is taken into the field to hunt small game or let loose in a barn to track and incapacitate rodents and other vermin. Not to mention the small size of the Norfolk. Too large of a breed, while having its own plus side in being stronger or having a higher top speed, and the agility starts to suffer, making the Norfolk perhaps the most qualified of all known breeds for the above mentioned tasks. [...]
The Norfolk terrier has a lot of character and it's only natural that such a character would have such an interesting history. Much about the Norfolk terrier is common knowledge, such as the breed's courage, which is probably mentioned at least once in everything ever written about the breed, as well as the fact that they are the second smallest working breed. Here, though, the reader will find some of the lesser known facts and neglected history of the Norfolk terrier. Below, perhaps even the experienced Norfolk lover will find something he or she didn't already know. [...]
Hounds are seen in cartoons playing detectives and cowboys, Dobermans get to be cops in the movies and wolves are seen wearing Zoot suits, twirling a pocket watch on its chain and whistling at ladies passing by. If every dog breed has a place in fiction, it seems natural that the famous bravery of the Norfolk terrier would eventually land one of them in an adventure story, so there's no surprise that when Allan Ahlberg wrote Woof!, a charming juvenile adventure novel (with a catchy title) about a young man who turns into a dog and goes on daring adventures, Ahlberg chose to cast the Norfolk terrier in the role of the hero's canine counterpart. In 1989, the book was adapted into a BBC television series that successfully ran for seven years thanks to its imaginative premise, exciting situations and capable artistry. The series had an undeniable appeal to the ten to fourteen demographic, which supported it in spite of regular cast changes. [...]
While they've been put to work in quite a lot of fields of labor, from hunting to police work, the Norfolk terrier is probably most famous for its reputation as a rodent hunting dog. In the European countryside in the nineteenth century, farmers and ranchers had a lot to contend with. Without the advent of preservatives, spoilage was much more of a problem a hundred years ago than it is now. Not to mention the fact that they had no vehicles to transport the product quickly, so the food was more likely to spoil en route. Weather, of course, was a problem as well, as preventative measures such as aluminum siding and advanced weather tracking technology were still years and years in the future. One hindrance the agriculture workers of the time managed to thwart, however, was the problem of rodent infestation. [...]