The Smooth Fox Terrier is a small to medium-sized breed, renowned for its energetic demeanor, friendly and outgoing nature, and distinctive, streamlined coat. The breed is sometimes colloquially referred to as the Foxie. Originating in England during the 19th century, the Smooth Fox Terrier was primarily used for hunting foxes. The breed's main role was to flush foxes out from their hiding places and into the open, where hunters could then pursue them. They were bred for their stamina, bravery, and keen sense of smell. The Smooth Fox Terrier is thought to be one of the oldest terrier breeds, with a breed standard dating back to 1876. They are close relatives to Wire Fox Terriers.
Smooth Fox Terriers are generally healthy, but should be monitored for patellar luxation and heart conditions. They may also suffer from deafness, primary lens luxation, congenital hypothyroidism with goiter (terrier type), degenerative myelopathy, distichiasis (an abnormal growth of eyelashes), Legg-Calve-Perthes disease (LCPD), and cataracts.
Smooth Fox Terriers are known for their energy, intelligence, and playful nature. They are friendly dogs, but can also be quite stubborn, which can make training a challenge. Early socialization and obedience training are key for this breed. Despite their hunting history, they can get along well with other dogs if they are socialized early and often, but their high prey drive can make them a risky match for homes with small pets like rabbits or rodents. They require daily walks and a lot of attention.
A Smooth Fox Terrier named "Nipper" was the model for the painting "His Master's Voice," which was later used as the logo for RCA and HMV6.
In the 1930s and 1940s, the Smooth Fox Terrier was one of the most recognized breeds in the U.S., largely due to their popularity in films and as mascots.
They are considered good "circus dogs" because of their trainability, intelligence, and agility.
Two Fox Terriers named Big Ben and Sonnie were owned by U.S. President Herbert Hoover.