Brazilian Terrier (Terrier Brasileiro)

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white with black, brown or blue markings
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The Brazilian Terrier is a mischievous, loving and hard-working breed native to Brazil. It is wide-spread in its homeland, but it hardly can be found elsewhere in the world. The functions of the breed include companionship, hunting on small animals, and vermin extermination. The Brazilian Terrier will be a great pet for any owner who knows how to handle terrier-type dogs and it will adapt equally well for apartment and rural living.

The Brazilian Terrier was developed exclusively on the territory of Brazil but majority of its descendants originated from Europe. The forefathers of the breed sailed with first Portuguese explorers to Brazilian shore in the XV century. Couple of Podengo Portugues Pequenos habitually accompanied Portuguese vessels and were effective means of eradication of rats and mice on board. This kind of dogs reached different parts of the world by the way of exploration, settlement and trade. In Brazil a number of crosses between these Portuguese dogs and native Spitz-type dogs occurred resulting in a number of local species across the country.

During the last half of the XIX century and the beginning of the XX century, Brazil built up tight economic and social connection with a few European states. Among affluent and rich Brazilian families it was prestigious to send their sons to European universities, particularly those in France and England. At that time in these countries various types of terriers as the Fox Terrier, the Jack Russell Terrier, and the Black and Tan Terrier were popular among fox hunters. Lots of Brazilian students adopted these dogs for its initial purpose, or just for companionship. The youngsters often married European women and took them to Brazil. These European ladies preferred smaller dogs and were usually escorted by the Miniature Pinscher, Chihuahua, and Toy Fox Terrier. These breeds were truly versatile and also severed as barnyard ratters. As the young men with their wives came back to Brazil, they brought the dogs with them. The Brazilian Terrier resulted from interbreeding these two groups of dogs with the Podengo Portugues/Native American Dog cross type. The breed was originally named Fox Paulistinha, which means «Fox Terrier of Sao Paulo».

In following years the Brazilian Terrier served a great deal for agricultural pest’s control on the fields of Brazilian farmers. The breed is an excellent hunting dog, well-accommodated for hot Brazilian climate. The dog was also widely used for sport hunting, popular pastime in that period.

Gradually the breed spread all over the country and nowadays enjoys wide popularity. Though the Brazilian Terrier is unique and pure breed it didn’t achieve any significant number outside the homeland. In 2007 this dog became one of the third Brazilian breeds recognised by the Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI).

In general, the Brazilian Terrier is much less aggressive than other Terriers. Most of the time this dog will be an affectionate and loyal friend though some specimens may possesses more reserved and independent character. It’s generally ok with the children of older age (8 years old or above) when they are taught to treat the dog properly.

The Brazilian Terrier is aloof with strangers and won’t tolerate invasion in its personal space. It is also very alert and quite noisy which males this breed a great watchdog.

The Brazilian Terrier is used to hunt in packs so there shouldn’t be any problems with other canine animals. Majority of the breed members can stand the presence of other dogs but some of them will express significant dog aggression.

This breed a strong prey drive that undoubtedly spreads on small home pets so the cohabitation with them is not an option. When the Brazilian Terrier and other animal of the same size or larger are raised together the dog usually won’t harass it. It doesn’t refer to small home creatures as the breed most certainly can’t be trusted with them.

Health Problems
The most common problems for the breed include:

• canine hip dysplasia;
• elbow dysplasia;
• patellar luxation;
• demodex mange;
• ear infections;
• epilepsy;
• deafness;
• allergies.

The coat of the Brazilian Terrier is easy to maintain. The professional grooming is unnecessary for this breed; just a regular brushing may be needed. Other practises of maintenance (nail clipping, occasional bath) shouldn’t be forgotten and carried out systematically. The amount of the Brazilian Terrier shedding varies from dog to dog.

The Brazilian Terrier is a quick-witted dog and a capable learner. This breed is able to compete at the highest level in various canine sports, for example obedience and agility. However, it will give hard time to novice trainer that’s why the professional handler is more recommended for this breed.

The Brazilian Terrier is not so willing to please as other breeds and tends to follow its own wishes. Most members are mulish and headstrong but it is manifested in much lesser extent compared with other terriers.

The methods founded on positive reinforcement and praise are more appropriate for the Brazilian Terrier than techniques based on harsh treatment and screaming. However, there is no guarantee of success in its training.
The Brazilian Terrier is capable to work untiringly literally for hours on end. The breed is exceptionally active and requires lots of physical exercise. An hour of vigorous daily walk is an absolute minimum in order to keep this dog satisfied and in a good shape.

The Brazilian Terrier needs both mental and physical stimulation. It’s an eager runner so it will make a wonderful jogging companion but much more appreciate to surf a securely fenced territory off-leash. Naturally, the dog can get accustomed to urban life though it will feel itself much more comfortable in a home with spacious yard.