By Jags Goldie Last updated: 27th October 2022

Norfolk Terrier


Jags Goldie
Last updated: 27th October 2022

A compact little versatile dog, the Norfolk Terrier was bred to assist in hunting by chasing a fox or dispatching small vermin, either working with a pack or alone. Before being recognized as a separate breed, the Norfolk was considered a variety of Norwich Terriers, distinguishable by its folded ears (or drop ears) as compared to the Norwich’s pricked ears. It comes with a slightly rounded, broad skull, small, oval eyes, wedge-shaped muzzle, moderately deep chest, short, sturdy legs, and medium length, high set, docked tail.

Norfolk Terrier Pictures

Quick Information

Other NamesNorfolk
CoatWeather-resistant, hard, wiry, straight, close-lying topcoat, definite undercoat, longer mane on shoulders and neck
ColorBlack and tan, grizzle, wheaten, red, dark points may appear
Breed TypePurebred
Lifespan12-16 years
Weight11-12 lbs
Height9-10 in
TemperamentFearless, alert, fun-loving, active, sociable
Litter Size2-5 puppies
Good with ChildrenYes
BarkingVocal when necessary
Country Originated inGreat Britain
Competitive Registration/ Qualification InformationACA, ACR, AKC, APRI, ANKC, CKC, CET, DRA, FCI, NAPR, KCGB, NZKC, NKC, UKC

Video: Norfolk Terrier Puppies Playing



During the 1880s, British athletes created a working terrier in East Anglia. It is believed that the ancestors of present-day Norwich and Norfolk Terriers were developed by crossing Irish Terriers, small red terriers of the Gypsy people, and local terrier-like dogs.

Students at Cambridge University used to keep these dogs, initially named the Cantab Terrier, as pets. Later, it was named the Trumpington Terrier since its development also occurred at a livery yard in Trumpington Street. An Irish horse rider named Frank Jones sold many short-legged terriers to the US before the First World War and so the dogs were named Jones Terriers.

Since the terriers were from the city of Norwich, they were designated as Norwich Terriers. After the English and American Kennel Clubs initially registered the Norwich in 1932 and 1936 respectively, the Kennel Club separately reclassified the drop-eared variety as the Norfolk and the prick-eared as the Norwich in 1964 while the American Kennel Club recognized it in 1979.

Temperament and Behavior

The incredibly cute Norfolk Terrier, with its lively and outgoing personality, will always charm its people. Though small, it is all tenacious, independent, hardworking, and loves to chase and play. It makes an affectionate companion and enjoys spending time with its owner. If left alone for a long period, it may become bored, trying to amuse itself by digging and barking.

The Norfolk, being a friendly and playful family pet, can get along well with children and other dogs with which it has been socialized. It should be ideally kept as pets in households with children over 10 years old because they are more likely to interact with the dog safely. If you have small animals like hamsters, birds, and rabbits as pets, then it is not a good idea to bring home a Norfolk.



Since the Norfolk is an energetic dog, it likes plenty of activities. Aside from including it in household activities, make sure you regularly take it outdoors for a 20-30 minute brisk walk or play. Be sure to install a-foot-deep fencing in the yard to prevent your Norfolk from escaping.


Although the Norfolk’s appeal is in its unkempt look, it requires some maintenance. Its coat may be brushed twice a week, ears cleaned weekly, toenails trimmed frequently, and its teeth brushed regularly using vet-recommended toothpaste and a soft toothbrush.

Health Problems

The Norfolk Terrier is known to be affected by some health conditions including the life-threatening Mitral Valve Disease (MVD), canine hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, and sensitivity to vaccines.


Despite its intelligence and loyalty, its occasional stubbornness can make training a difficult task.

To your Norfolk puppy, the world is an unusual place, so come up with new people, places, sights, sounds, smells, and textures and introduce your pet to them. Make these new experiences positive by giving it a fair amount of treats and praise. Once your pup has received the full series of vaccinations, take it to the dog park, the pet store, over to your friend’s home for a play-date with other puppies, and so on.

Because of its natural chasing instinct, it is essential to teach your Norfolk to respond to the “come” command, especially when unleashed. Moreover, it may bark excessively at times, and so a “quiet” command should be made a part of its basic training routine.


Give your Norfolk half to one cup of quality dry food per day. Be sure to measure its daily amount because it is likely to become obese if fed excessively.

Interesting Facts

  • In 1962, a division for the two ear types of the Norwich Terrier was suggested by the American Terrier Authority “William Ross Proctor,” and it was used in shows and competitions until 1979.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our newsletter

Join our subscribers list to get the latest news, and updates delivered directly in your inbox.