History of the Airedale Terrier

Caron Jones Airedale terrier breeder


History of the Airedale & Interesting Airedale Facts

The Airedales were created in England in an area known as the Valley of the River Aire. History tells us this breed was started about 1785 by working class people who needed dogs to eliminate wharf rats and predators that were getting out of control. Early on and into the nineteenth century, this breed was known as the Bingley or Waterside Terrier.

After decades of breeding to develop and purify the stock, breed fanciers decided to name the breed the Airedale Terrier in 1879. In 1886, the breed was officially recognized by The Kennel Club of England as a purebred.

"Bruce" was the first Airedale to arrive on the shores of America in 1881. Bruce would go on to win the Terrier Class in the New York Dog Show, which, in modern times, is referred to as Westminster. In 1888, the breed was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club as meeting the requirements to be a registered breed.

Today, the Airedale is popular not only in America, but in many developed countries throughout the world.  

Long before Rin Tin Tin had his famous TV show, Airedales were used as Police Dogs in Britain. In 1906, Airedale Terriers were selected by the North Eastern Railway Police for duty as police dogs because of their high intelligence, natural intuition, and strong ability to smell and detect scents. In World War 1, the Airedale was used as both a mail dog and to carry messages to soldiers behind enemy lines.

Later Airedales were used by the Red Cross to find injured soldiers on the battlefields. Many famous celebrities, along with 3 former U.S. Presidents, have owned Airedales.

In the early 1900’s, the Airedale was a favorite among farmers and ranchers as the all-purpose dog. Their job was to take out predators, guard the livestock, help their owners hunt to put food on the table, and play with the kids after everything else had been handled. This was quite similar in the ways they were utilized more than a hundred years earlier.

Today’s Airedale has adjusted well with modern times while still holding on to their original heritages. They can be very comfortable in either a suburban or rural setting. They can still be trained in specialized fields or can be quite content chasing a ball in their own backyard  

Contact us, today, and talk with us about the possibilities of having an Airedale as your next dog.