Illustration by Louis Agassiz Fuertes
This active, speedy little dog has had much influence in the formation of many of the present-day breeds.
A generation ago the "rat terrier," as he was commonly and very appropriately called, was a well-known and popular dog, though now he is rarely seen. He is a product of the mining region of Manchester, England, and was quite a prominent figure in the holiday sports of that district.
His "long, flat, narrow, level, and wedgeshaped" head had little room left in it for good nature, after the native keenness and self-interest had been accommodated, and this breed has never been as popular with the outside world as with its owners on this account. Although they are very spirited and courageous, they are apt to be very short-tempered and snappy.
He is a beautifully set up little dog, clean of line as a greyhound, and only a degree or two less slender. He is entirely black, except for the deep mahogany tan that covers the chops and throat, chest, inner sides of legs, feet (except black toe-tops), ear linings, spots on eyebrows and the papilla on the cheek, and the under side of the tail at the root. His coat is close, hard, and very glossy, revealing his beautifully muscled, yet delicate frame. About 18 inches high, he should weigh 16 to 20 pounds, though a diminutive toy type exists, which is the tiniest of all dogs.
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