irish terrier breed information

common health issues

The retina is responsible for transmitting light to the brain where it is interpreted as an image. PRA causes deterioration of retinal cells and causes blindness. It can affect puppies as young as a few weeks old, or may appear later in life. There is no treatment or cure, but blind dogs usually can lead quite happy lives.

Clinical signs of hypothyroidism are caused by a decrease in normal thyroid activity. In congenital hypothyroidism, puppies will have stunted growth and other abnormalities. A blood test confirms the disease and treatment with thyroid hormone supplements is lifelong.

Muscular dystrophy is a progressive muscular disease seen in young dogs and cats. Clinical signs of enlarged muscles, excess salivation and stiff gait are seen in pets as young as 5 months old. Unfortunately, there is no specific treatment for muscular dystrophy, and affected pets have a poor prognosis.

The exact origin of the Irish Terrier is unknown, but it is believed to be descended from Black and Tan Terrier-type dogs from Britain and Ireland. Irish Terriers, like many other Terriers, were originally bred to rid properties of rats and other vermin. During World War I, they were also used as messenger dogs, largely because of their plucky tenacity.

A medium-sized dog, the Irish Terrier weighs in at about 30 pounds and can be wheaten in color or the more popular red. The Irish Terrier is a strong, active and intelligent breed who can be willful if not given boundaries. They are a loyal breed and can do well with children when properly socialized. Irish Terriers excel at activities which provide both mental and physical exercise, such as obedience and agility training. If not given a proper outlet for these needs, the Irish Terrier may find more destructive ways to burn this energy – perhaps at the expense of your couch!

Although this active breed is intelligent and tenacious, they are still prone to hereditary and congenital conditions that may adversely affect their health – as well as your family budget. Some of the conditions and illnesses Irish Terriers are prone to include bladder problems such as cystinuria; musculoskeletal diseases such as muscular dystrophy; eye conditions such as progressive retinal atrophy; spinal cord diseases such as degenerative myelopathy; and thyroid problems such as hypothyroidism.

Thankfully, Petplan pet insurance covers all hereditary and chronic conditions as standard. Which means if your Irish Terrier inherits his dad’s bladder problems or his mom’s eye troubles, you’re protected.

Use the condition checker tool to learn what common conditions your pet may have.

claim calculator

  • your share of the cost: $450
  • Petplan's reimbursement to you: $1,550
  • coverage remaining in policy period: Unlimited
    (full policy limits are reinstated upon renewal)