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Criccieth – The Welsh Terrier. The Welsh Terrier originates from Wales and was bred for hunting foxes, otters and badgers; but during the last century it has mainly been bred for showing. Despite this, it has retained its terrier strength of character. The Welsh Terrier has been claimed to be the oldest existing dog breed in the UK. When dog shows originated these rather scruffy Welsh earthdogs were tidied up for the show ring. Argricultural and Horticultural Shows were very popular and, it is believed, that the Welsh Terriers first had a specific section at the Llŷn

and Eifionydd Show at Pwllheli in 1885. In 1887 the Kennel Club in London recognised the breed for registration and the Standard was written. It is sturdy and medium-sized weighing between 20 and 22 pounds. According to the breed standard, the dog’s coat should be wiry and hard and a combination of black and tan. A black jacket going from the neck to the tail and partly down the dog’s thighs is another characteristic of the breed. The Welsh Terrier has a typical terrier temperament. It is a happy, lively, and seldom shy or timid dog. It is generally friendly with people and other dogs. They can be devoted friends and can function either as city dogs or as country dogs. After being given official recognition, the breed became very popular; several residents of Criccieth bred them for competition. Amongst these were Dr J. Livingstone Davies, John Jones Harlech View and John Williams Bristol House. Their names appear frequently as prize winners at agricultural and dog shows throughout the country. The most successful was Walter S. Glyn (2). His father, a wealthy Liverpool shipowner, rented Brynhir Hall from local landowner Sir Hugh Ellis-Nanney. Walter S.Glyn lived the life of a country gentleman building kennels at the Hall and becoming an enthusiastic breeder and competitor. He bred and owned more Welsh Terrier champions than anyone else in the period 1887 until his death on April 17, 1933 and was the leading authority at the time on the Welsh Terrier and a staunch supporter of the breed as show dogs in the early 1900s. He was at one time a secretary and treasurer of The Welsh Terrier Club, was elected a member of The Kennel Club in 1898 and a committee member in 1899. His dog 'Brynhir Ballad' broke all records by gaining his 31st Challenge Certificates at Crystal Palace in 1902. He was a judge at shows and competitions and was renowned for his strict and critical judgments; determined to maintain the breed to a high standard. In 1911 he presented 'Gwen' with a silver collar as a gift to the Prince of Wales at Plas Machynlleth, and then we have the story of Lord Attlee, choosing the Welsh Terrier to put on his coat of arms instead of lions or leopards as was the custom. His reason for the choice, he says, was because his favorite was the 'Welsh Terrier'. President John F. Kennedy had a Welsh Terrier named ‘Charlie’. From a scruffy work dog to high places!

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