The Lancashire Heeler is a small-sized, sturdy dog related to the Welsh Corgi and Manchester Terrier. Its legs are short in comparison to its body, giving it a low-set appearance. It comes with wide-set erect ears, well-muscled hindquarters, long and broad chest, firm abdomen, strong back and high-set tail. Once used as a farm dog, it has now become widely known as a companion breed.
|Alternative Names||Ormskirk Terrier, Ormskirk Heeler|
|Coat||Dense double coat; fine undercoat; short, dense, hard, and flat topcoat; slight mane appears on the neck|
|Color||Black and tan/liver and tan|
|Size of Litter||2-5 puppies|
|Temperament||Intelligent, friendly, mischievous, stubborn, alert|
|Good with Children||Do best with older, caring children|
|Country Originated in||England|
|Competitive Registration/Qualification Information||NKC, KCGB, DRA, FCI, NAPR, ACR, APRI, CKC, AKC/FSS|
Even though its exact origin is unknown, it is believed that the Lancashire Heeler was developed using the lines of Welsh Corgi and Manchester Terrier breeds. Norfolk’s Gwen Mackintosh took an interest in the breed and started breeding them in the 1960s. Then in 1978, Mackintosh along with other enthusiasts established the Lancashire Heeler Club and set up the breed standard. In 1981, it got recognized by the Kennel Club.
Although it was used for herding livestock and ratting, people gradually became less dependent on cattle dogs, which caused a decline in their numbers. In 2006, the Kennel Club considered the breed as vulnerable since its registration figure per year was 300 or less. In 2007, only 146 Heelers were recorded in the UK. The FCI temporarily accepted this breed in 2016.
The Lancashire Heeler dogs, being friendly and devoted by nature, make an adorable family pet that is always willing to please their people. Although they get along well with kids, they might display herding behavior and nip at the ankles or feet of children.
They display true terrier instincts – lively, independent, and discerning. Always watchful of their surroundings, the Heelers will bark at anything that threatens their territory. They can be aggressive towards other dogs.
Although they are naturally stubborn and mischievous, their smartness and devotion to the handler make them trainable.
Socialization: While walking your Heeler, introduce it to other dogs. Never yell at your pet or pull back on its leash if it barks or acts aggressively. Instead, try to distract it using a correction, be it a gentle touch, a sound cue, or a tug of its leash sideways. Also, expose your pet to different activities every week.
Herding instincts: To stop your Lancashire Heeler pup from nipping at people’s ankles, keep a toy in your hand and wave it to distract your pet. Once it stops nibbling, offer the toy and praise.
One to one-and-a-half cups of quality dry kibble per day is a good option for your Lancashire Heeler.