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As with most pedigree dogs, the history of the Manchester Terrier is obscure. However the Black and Tan Terrier, predecessor of the Manchester Terrier, is considered to be the oldest of all identifiable terrier breeds.


The Black and Tan Terrier was recognised in Tudor times and found mention in Dr Caius' Encyclopaedia of Dogs (circa 1570).​ 

By the early 1800's a whole chapter was devoted to The Black and Tan Terrier. In J. A. Walsh's 'The Dog In Health and Disease'. The description contained within would serve well even today:


'Smooth haired, long tapering nose, narrow flat skull, eyes small and bright, chest rather deep than wide, only true colour black and tan'


At this time the rat, due to poor sanition, became a major health concern in Britain. 'The Black a​nd Tan' soon became the breed of choice and was employed to tackle this problem. Soon rat killing became a keen sport and rat pits appeared in the majority of towns and cities.

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To make the Black and Tan more streamline, fine and nimble, John Hulme crossed 'Whippet' like​ dogs with the Black and Tan.


Which eventually developed into the Manchester Terrier we see today.

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The name 'Manchester Terrier' became widely used in the late 1800's as a high concentration of Black and Tans were found in the north west area of the country. 

Numbers have rollercoasted, dramatically, declining when ear cropping became illegal in the 1890's, the advent of the First World War and restrictions on travel due to rabies. Numbers steadily climbed between times.

 In 1937, during a period of prosperity for the breed, The British Manchester Terrier Club was formed, appropriately at The Manchester Championship Dog Show.​

Numbers again fell alarmingly after World War Two and only eleven Manchester Terriers existed in The UK. Many of these were too old to be bred. So to save the breed The Kennel Club allowed controlled, restricted cross breeding with the recently split English Toy.


Additionally Manchesters were imported from the USA to introduce new blood.​

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​Gwinny Willows Thunderstorm                                               Sir Oscar Of Chatham Farms

Although there are only approximately 130 Manchester Terriers registered with The Kennel Club each year in the UK, a dedicated  fancy has ensured the breed goes from strength to strength.​

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The British Manchester Terrier Club

The British Manchester Terrier Club is here to promote and support the breed as a whole.

The Club holds events throughout the year for its membership. These include an Open Show, a Championship Show, a Breed Seminar, a ‘Fun Weekend’ & Limit show, an AGM and a general meeting if one is required.

The BMTC also actively help Manchesters who fall on hard times. The ‘Friends of The British Manchester Terrier’ support MT’s in need of rehoming and are actively involved in breed rescue, through fostering and fundraising. They are also there to give advice whenever required.

The membership have represented the Manchester Terrier at every Discover Dogs event since inception. Both in London and at the world famous Crufts Dog Show. They promote the breed at the CLA Game Fair, the Dogs Unleashed event and attend many other county shows throughout the year.


BMTC members promoting the breed at the St Georges Day Parade, Manchester