Monday, February 23, 2009

Development of the Manchester Terrier

I was reading comments in some old dog books today. One was The Complete Dog Book By William A. Bruette, 1921. It makes a reference about the development of the Manchester Terrier from the Black and Tan Terrier. The reference was that John Hulme had bred his whippet to a terrier which served as the beginning of the Manchester variety. No dates were mentioned other than it was an accepted breed and Manchester was the breed hub by the 1860s. Supposedly, by 1827 a renowned example of Manchester Terrier was very successful in the rat pits. However a search indicated that possibly that was the Black and Tan Terrier bred to the whippet.

So it would seem that whippets were known as a breed or type prior to that date. Granted we all know how accurate breed histories can be... But I thought it was an interesting mention.

The Complete Dog Book By William A. Bruette, 1921

The Manchester district was a noted center for two "poor men's sports"--rat killing and rabbit coursing. A fancier by the name of John Hulme, with the idea of producing a dog that could be used at both contests, bred a whippet bitch to a celebrated rat-killing dog, a cross bred terrier dark brown in color. The result of this cross was very satisfactory, the dogs proved useful, and other fanciers in the neighborhood took to breeding them, and the


Manchester school of terriers was launched. They advanced in popularity rapidly and soon spread over the British Isles and were brought to this country in considerable numbers. The name Manchester was dropped as being too restricted in its designation, and they have since been known as the Black and Tan Terrier.


GENERAL APPEARANCE.-A Terrier calculated to take his own part in the rat pit, and not of the Whippet type.


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