Ready to stump your friends? Ireland is blessed with nine breeds native to the country. Setters, terriers, hounds, and more! Amaze your friends with this Irish dog breed trivia. That’s no blarney!
- The Irish Water Spaniel is believed to be related to dogs like the Poodle, the Barbet, the Portuguese Water Dog, and some other water dogs which are now extinct. All of these dogs have a similar curly coat and worked as water retrievers.
- The Irish Setter sometimes has a small white spot on the chest which is a reminder that the breed branched off from the Irish Red and White Setter.
- Irish Red and White Setters are most often a working gun dog in the British Isles today. Many people involved with the breed take pride in the fact that the dogs can still do their original job.
- The Irish Terrier is believed to be related to the Kerry Blue Terrier and the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier in Ireland; and related to the Welsh, Lakeland, and Scottish Terriers in Britain. All of these breeds have links to the old black and tan terrier which no longer exists.
- The Irish Wolfhound is the tallest of all dogs. According to the American Kennel Club, mature male Irish Wolfhounds should be at least 32 inches tall at the shoulder; females should be at least 30 inches tall at the shoulder. Females are often as tall as the males.
- The Glen of Imaal Terrier is famous as the “turnspit” dog – peddling a wheel in old kitchens to keep the meat turning on the spit in the fire. Whether it’s true or not seems to be in question, but there is plenty of lore about the dogs turning the spit.
- The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is related to the Kerry Blue Terrier and the Irish Terrier, probably through sharing ancestry to the old black and tan terrier in Britain. Both the Wheaten and the Kerry Blue have coats that shed very little.
- Kerry Blue Terrier puppies are born black and gradually lighten as they get older, slowly turning the blue color that the breed is famous for.
- The Kerry Beagle was originally bred as a staghound but today they are used to hunt fox and hare, especially in drag hunts.