The Toy Fox Terrier is directly descended from the Smooth Fox Terrier and has long awaited official recognition from some canine organizations. The Smooth Fox Terrier was likely created as a cross between several breeds, including the Dachshund. Later, selective breeding and crossing with some other very small breeds led to the establishment of the Toy Fox Terrier as a separate breed. Some people call this breed the American Toy Terrier. The word “Amertoy” has been coined in connection with the breed as well and it’s possible that one of these names will become the official name if the breed is ever formally recognized by the remaining canine clubs.

The Fox Terrier was bred for hunting. These dogs would find foxes that had run to ground, follow them into their hiding places and snap at them until they ran. The Toy Fox Terrier retains many of the characteristics of their ancestry, though the selective breeding and addition of some specific breeds has refined some characteristics and features.

The goal when establishing the Toy Fox Terrier as a separate breed was a small dog that still had the traits of their tenacious and rambunctious ancestors. Those who choose these dogs say that someone forgot to inform the Toy Fox Terrier that he’s not nearly as large as his direct ancestors, the Fox Terrier. As a rule, healthy adults weigh in at five or six pounds, though variations of up to a couple of pounds have been known to occur. Remember that the ancestors of these dogs were charged with the task of running fox from their hiding places. They had the courage needed to accomplish this task and that trait hasn’t been bred out of the Toy Fox Terrier.

One important thing to remember about these terriers is that they’re lively, curious and intelligent – a combination that keeps many owners on their toes. Added to that is the fact that these dogs don’t tend to outgrow that natural bubbly personality. The Toy Fox Terrier, as is typical of many small breeds, can reasonably be expected to live 12 years or more. Throughout the majority of those years, these dogs will remain happy, alert and very active, especially if treated well and given a healthy lifestyle.

Their small size makes them ideal for apartment life. They’re quite happy to get in their daily quota of exercise playing around the living room and they’re not big enough to knock over tables and the like with their play. The fact that these dogs are so smart while requiring little outdoor exercise has made them a recent addition to breeds used for aiding the handicapped. Several reports indicate that Toy Fox Terriers have successfully been trained to perform various tasks that are challenges for their owners, including taking their deaf owners to the source of a ringing telephone or doorbell.

These dogs are generally colored very much like traditional Fox Terriers, with white coats and brown or black markings. The sheer fact of their size makes them fragile, but they tend to be reasonably healthy dogs. Add that to the sheer joy these dogs exhibit in their everyday lives and you’ve got the recipe for a best friend, all wrapped up in the tiny body of a Toy Fox Terrier.

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  • Friendly, Alert, Intelligent
  • AKC Breed Popularity: Ranks 111 of 191
  • Height: 8.5-11.5 inches
  • Life Expectancy: 13-15 years
  • Group: Toy Group 

American Toy Fox Terrier Club

Club Website