Miniature Rat Terrier (Toy Rat Terrier) – All You Need To Know

Miniature Rat Terrier (Toy Rat Terrier) – All You Need To Know

I’m sure you have heard of Miniature Rat Terriers if you are a dog lover. If not, read this post to the end; you will get to know everything about this Toy Rat Terrier.

Rat Terriers are dogs packed with tenacious and bold personality traits despite their teeny-tiny body size. These dogs were developed as hunting dogs, yet they’ve become ideal family dogs for anyone who needs to have a friendly, active, and affectionate little canine over the years.

Did you know that this dog breed can be further categorized into different versions? Today, we will be talking about one such version of Rat Terriers known as the Miniature Rat Terrier.

Miniature or Toy Rat Terriers are a type of Rat Terriers. The primary factor differentiating a Miniature Rat Terrier from a standard Rat Terrier is their body size. Generally, Rat Terriers are considered small made dogs. As the name implies, Miniature Rat Terriers tend to be smaller than the standard breed.

Although Miniature Rat Terriers and standard breed Rat Terriers are closely related, you will also find some clear differences between them amidst all those similarities.

Either way, they don’t fail to impress you with their undeniably adorable looks and lively personalities.

If you plan to have a Miniature Rat Terrier, it is important to have a fair knowledge of the breed. To better understand the history, appearance, personality, and maintenance of Miniature Rat Terriers, refer to the subsections below. 

Origin of Miniature Rat Terrier

First things first! When were Miniature Rat Terriers originated? If we study the roots of standard breed Rat Terriers, they were first bred around the 1920s in the United Kingdom.

In the initial stages, Rat Terriers were smaller in their body size compared to the Rat Terriers that you can find nowadays.

This breed was developed as hunting dogs, specifically to hunt rats and small farm pests. This is why they are called Rat Terriers in the first place.

Over the years, as the breed developed, their physical characteristics changed in specific ways.

Rat Terrier’s reputation as hunting dogs declined around the mid-1900s when chemicals were used to eliminate pests. Yet the miniature version remained popular as hunting dogs.

It is hard to trace the roots of Miniature Rat Terriers precisely; however, it is evident that Miniature Rat Terriers were bred at the early stages of this breed mainly because their smaller body sizes were suitable for hunting. 

The appearance of the Miniature (Toy) Rat Terrier

As mentioned earlier, Miniature Rat Terriers share similar physical characteristics with the standard breed. But don’t forget that they have significant differences as well.

The most apparent difference would be the body size. A Miniature or a Toy Rat Terrier typically weighs around 5-15 pounds and stands tall up to 10-13 inches.

These sizes could slightly differ based on the gender and genetics of parents. Their coat texture and color are very similar to the standard breed.

They have short and straight fur with a dense texture. The coat color is typically bi-color or tri-color, consisting of white, black, brown, gray, and cream colors.

Miniature Rat Terriers have pricked ears and sharp eyes, giving them a fierce look.

The temperament of the Miniature Rat Terrier

Although Rat Terriers were bred as hunting dogs, as time went on, they gained popularity as family dogs rather than hunting dogs. But Miniature Rat Terriers maintained the reputation that they own from their lineage.

Nowadays, Miniature Rat Terriers are also raised in plenty of households as family dogs. However, their exceptional hunting skills are still embedded. 

Overall, Miniature Rat Terriers are energetic, playful, friendly dogs. These little dogs always burst with so much energy, and they love to spend their time with humans.

As witty and fun as possible, Miniature Rat Terriers are highly alerted dogs. They have very sharp senses, which makes them good hunting dogs. It is not unusual to notice a somewhat stronger prey instinct within a Miniature Rat Terrier.

On the other hand, sometimes they can be sneaky too. However, these dogs are intelligent.

Therefore, if you train them from the youngest age, you can reasonably reduce their stubbornness and predator behavior. 

Mix breeds of Mini Toy Rat Terrier

As mentioned earlier, Miniature Rat Terriers are well known for their hunting skills. Later on, they’ve been crossed with other miniature dog breeds to create designer dogs with more skills and unique looks. Some of the popular mixed breeds of Mini Toy Rat Terriers are mentioned below.

1. Miniature Rat Terrier and Chihuahua Mix 

The combination of Miniature Rat Terriers and Chihuahuas, simply known as Rat-cha or Ratchua Terrier, is one of the famous mixed versions of Mini Rat Terriers.

These adorable tiny dogs make affectionate, loyal and energetic family friends. They are also great dogs to raise in small spaces.

2. Miniature Rat Terrier and Jack Russell Terrier Mix 

Jack-Rat is the hybrid version of Jack Russell Terriers and Mini Rat Terriers. Coming from the Terrier dog family, they both share some similar traits.

Overall, Jack-Rats are loyal and friendly dogs. Also, they have intense energy levels. 

3. Miniature Rat Terrier and Dachshund Mix 

Rat Doxie is the crossbreed of Mini Rat Terriers and Dachshunds. Appearance-wise these dogs have significant differences.

Personality-wise, they share some similarities as both come from hunting backgrounds. Rat Doxies are also friendly, energetic, and lovable dogs.

4. Miniature Rat Terrier and Toy Poodle Mix 

The crossed version of Miniature Rat Terriers and Toy Poodles is known as Rattle or Poorat Terrier. This hybrid version undeniably is adorable looking.

They make ideal family pets but sometimes can be a bit stubborn too. But this can be controlled through proper training. 

How to take care of your Toy Rat Terrier?

As learned from this article, Miniature Rat Terriers are affectionate tiny dogs, but taking care of these dogs might not be as easy as you think.

It doesn’t matter if it is a gigantic or tiny dog; as dog parents, you should equally pay attention to taking care of them.

Here are some essential factors you should follow to take proper care of a Miniature Rat Terrier. 

  • Training 

Despite their size, sometimes small-sized dogs can be a handful. This applies to Miniature Rat Terriers too.

As mentioned, Miniature Rat Terriers inherit strong prey instincts. This could naturally make them stubborn dogs.

On the other hand, they have intense energy levels. If you do not train your Miniature Rat Terrier, there’s a lot of room that they could turn into sneaky and stubborn dogs.

But the good thing is if you start the training process at a young age, it will eliminate their wilful behavior.

And you don’t have to be a professional trainer to train a Miniature Rat Terrier. You can follow simple training techniques but don’t forget to start it since the pup stage also be consistent in training.

  • Dietary and exercise requirements 

I don’t have to stretch how much contribution food and physical activities support a dog’s well-being.

Miniature Rat Terriers are energetic little pooches. Due to their high energy levels, they also have high metabolism; therefore, you must provide them with nutritional, well-balanced food.

When giving them food, you have to pay attention to the dog’s body weight and feed them accordingly.

Typically, giving two cups of food per day to a full-grown healthy Miniature Rat Terrier is recommended.

As much as attention you put into their dietary requirements, you also have to be concerned about their exercise needs.

Miniature Rat Terriers need plenty of exercise to stay fit. You can regularly engage them in physical activities such as walking or fetching for 15-30 minutes. 

  • Grooming and maintenance 

Maintenance plays a vital role when taking care of any dog. When it comes to Miniature Rat Terriers, they are generally considered low-maintenance dogs.

Therefore you will not find it hard to groom and maintain these dogs. But it is essential to pursue a care routine.

To elaborate, you can brush their coat weekly, wash them once per month, brush their teeth a couple of times a week, trim their nails, and occasionally clean their ears. The cleaner the dog is, the happier they are. 

  • General health

It is also essential to have a rough understanding of the general health of the breed in order to take good care of them.

Although Miniature Rat Terriers are generally considered healthy dogs, it is common to see some health complexities among the breed. These health issues are allergies, patellar luxation, hip dysplasia, and elbow dysplasia.

Conclusion – Highlights of Miniature (Toy) Rat Terrier

In this article, we comprehensively talked about Miniature Rat Terriers. What‘s good about having one of these dogs? Miniature Rat Terriers are a good fit for anyone from new dog parents to experienced dog parents.

They are affectionate dogs and friendly and playful by nature, making them ideal human companions. Do not forget that these little dogs are also intelligent and very attentive.

So it would be fair enough to comment that Miniature Rat Terriers are small dogs with big personalities.

I hope you got some valuable insights by reading this article! Stay tuned with Jack Russell Owner for more interesting posts about your favorite dog breed.


  • George Brown

    George B. is the founder of the JRO Organization. He believes in creating a better world for domestic animals. He believes domestic animals are more vulnerable than other animals, especially dogs, since they have been used to depending on their owners for generations. So, he started JRO to share his ideas and insights while helping vulnerable dogs worldwide. George runs multiple projects on street dogs in developing countries, especially Sri Lanka.

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