terrier, classification used by breeders and kennel clubs to designate dogs originally bred to start small game and vermin from their burrows or, in the case of several breeds in this group, to go to earth and kill their prey. Today these dogs are raised chiefly as pets. The following breeds are classified as terrirers by the American Kennel Club: airedale terrier, Australian terrier; Bedlington terrier; border terrier; bull terrier; cairn terrier; Dandie Dinmont terrier; fox terrier; Irish terrier; Kerry blue terrier; Lakeland terrier; Manchester terrier; schnauzer (miniature); Norwich terrier; Scottish terrier; Sealyham terrier; Skye terrier; Staffordshire terrier; Welsh terrier; and West Highland white terrier. See dog.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.