Patterdale Terrier Coats — Colours and Types

Patterdale Terriers are beautiful, sweet natured little dogs, with oodles of personality. They may be small, but they are full of energy and love to run, play fetch and explore the great outdoors. But what kind of Patterdale terrier coats can you get? Being prepared for your dog’s grooming needs is a huge advantage when it comes to planning and preparation.

Different types of Patterdale Terrier Coats

Generally, Patterdale Terriers have short hair, but it can vary in thickness and texture. There are three coat types: Smooth, Rough and Broken, but the undercoat is also dense.

Smooth coats are short in length, stiff and slightly coarse, but look smooth and sleek. The Broken coat is coarser to touch due to the longer guard hairs and grows longer than the Smooth coat. Rough coats tend to be wavy instead of straight and the dog will have a beard, moustache, long eyebrows and longer ear hair. In addition, his body hair will be long compared to Smooth or Broken coats.

Grooming Patterdale Terrier Coats

Their coats are generally low maintenance, especially the Smooth coats. Broken and Rough coats require more regular brushing to prevent matting and a trip to the groomers every 4 to 6 weeks for a trim.

They are not huge shedders, but regular brushing at home will help free any loose hairs and keep them off your furniture and clothes!

Bathing should only be done once every 3 months or so. Dogs have a lot of natural oils in their skin that keep their hair follicles strong and healthy. Washing too often can remove these oils and cause skin irritation and hair loss.

Patterdale Terrier Coat Colours

Coat colour is debated between show-dog owners and pet owners in what is acceptable for the breed. In competition, Black and Chocolate are favoured. Among Patterdales, Black is the dominant and most common colour, with white chest and feet markings also common. Chocolate is also quite common, although the genes for this coat colour are not as strong as those for Black coats. I know lots of owners who have a brown Patterdale terrier like my dog Blake.

Away from competitive showing, Patterdales can display a variety of coat colours and patterns. Like show dogs, Black and Black with white markings is seen most often among litters. However, there are many other colours possible and they can be solid or with white markings:

  • Chocolate (brown nose)
  • Chocolate/red (brown nose)
  • Brindle (red nose)
  • Tan (black or brown nose)
  • White with black tail and face markings (black nose)

For unknown reasons, some Patterdale Terrier breeders have tried to breed out the Brindle, Tan and White colourings. Coat colour does not have any baring on their ability to hunt or compete and coat colour is not link to any health conditions.

It is possible that since Black and Chocolate are the most common, this was deemed acceptable for the breed when they were first bred away from Fell Terriers. Other colours and markings do not mean the puppies have come from untested breeding.

When breeding pairs are selected without colour as a factor, there is actually a far greater variety of colours within each litter. It is human preference and selective breeding that has made ‘normal’ colours appear to be rare or not possible for the breed.

Read more about the Patterdale Terrier Here.

Originally published at on July 22, 2020.



Hi I’m Amy — travel blogger, dog lover, digital marketer. I write mainly about Europe, Middle East and Southeast Asia. Getting into drones!

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Amy Trumpeter

Hi I’m Amy — travel blogger, dog lover, digital marketer. I write mainly about Europe, Middle East and Southeast Asia. Getting into drones!