Feist Dog Breed – The Small Hunter

Talking about the feist dog breed, the Feist dog is a small hunting dog that has been commonly found on the farm and it shares a number of characteristics with the terrier group, known for its boundless energy, its athletic build, and its fearless behavior. The breed is said to have descended from terriers and was later imported into the United States by working-class immigrants. The height of the Feist dog is about 10 to 18 inches and it weighs between 15 and 20 pounds. The lifespan of the Feist dog is between 15 and 18 years.

When you hear the words Feist dog breed, you know they are referring to a small terrier kind of dog. People were impressed with the dog and fans of the breed as well as breeders began to produce certain lines for different purposes. It was essentially a farm dog and it was used to get rid of mice and rats, more so because of its keen sense of smell.

The Feist dog breed also goes by other names such as Mountain Feist. There are stories as to where the name of the Feist dog comes from. People suspect it comes from a certain Raymond Feist who owned a number of these dogs. Then again others believe that because the dog is so feisty, the name comes from the nature of the dog. Although the American Kennel Club doesn’t recognize the Feist, other top kennel clubs do, one of which is the United Kennel Club.

The Feist Belongs To The Hunting Dog Group

The Feist belongs to the group of hunting dogs and looks fairly similar to a Jack Russell Terrier. The Feist shares the same white coat with brown or black markings as well as the same determined, vibrant personality of Jack Russell. The Feist is a small dog emerging from Terrier dogs brought over to the States.

These Terriers dogs included a blend from a number of terriers – the Manchester Terrier, Smooth Fox- and also the English White Terrier. The Feist isn’t a new type of dog and in fact, there are records of the dog which go back centuries. They have been referred to as far back as 1770 already.

The Feist dog breed is energetic and he has been accustomed to hunting. They are also referred to as squirrel dogs and they like to chase their prey above ground and up a tree. You get other dogs that prefer to drive out prey by running into holes and digging furiously. Also, unlike hounds, Feists are quiet when tracking, but their behavior changes when their prey runs up a tree. Then it goes into a frenzied barking to alert its human owner where the prey is.

Not All Feist Dogs Display The Same Features

Because there are about 14 different kinds of Feist dog breeds, their features won’t always be the same. Their features will depend on the type of feist dog you get as your pet. Whichever one you settle on, they will all make excellent companions.

They are certainly intelligent, alert dogs and will require training. The Feist dog breed will respond well to training. Training and socialization will be important for him, otherwise, his energy and exuberance could make him disobedient.

One thing is sure, the Feist dog breed offers its human owners loads of personality and energy, and when you bring one of these small to medium-sized dogs into your home and heart, there will never be a dull moment.

Bringing home the wrong kind of dog can cause a lot of problems in the household, especially when the dog is aggressive towards children and other pets in the home. Feist dogs do well in homes with or without pets and with or without children. They’re adaptable non-aggressive dogs who will do well with active seniors as well.

Every Feist Puppy Needs To Be Vaccinated

You need to have your Feist puppy vaccinated. These vaccines help prevent illnesses that could kill your pet without them. There are different kinds of vaccines for different diseases and the vaccine will help your pet fight the invasion of disease-causing organisms.

Each state has its own laws regarding the rabies vaccine. A good time to have your Feist puppy vaccinated is at 8 weeks of age. Core vaccines are given to all dogs and puppies while non-core vaccines are given based on where you live and your lifestyle.

A typical core vaccine includes DHP or Distemper, Hepatitis, and Parvo. Your puppy will get this DHP at 6 to 8 weeks and receive 3 others, with a booster at 1 year of age. Your vet can explain exactly how the puppy vaccines work and which ones are mandatory.

The Feisty Feist Needs Plenty Of Exercises

He is an outdoor dog, thriving on fun and games. He is the kind of dog that will require plenty of exercise and chasing after a ball is one of his favorite games. If you choose to keep a Feist as a pet, you will need to take him on walks, on your hikes, or when you go cycling or swimming. He is the kind of dog that wants to be involved in all your outdoor activities. He won’t do well cooped up inside all day.

Standing at about 10 to 18 inches in height and weighing anything between 12 to 30 pounds, the Feist is a compact, muscular, short-haired dog that doesn’t shed much. He is not regarded as hypoallergenic. The coat of the dog is available in a variety of colors but they are essentially a bi-colored dog such as red and white, tan and white, black and white.

With the Feist dog breed, you’re getting a sturdy dog with a medium-length tail that he holds up. In fact, the tail can be bobtail or docked. Most people prefer the docked look as it gives the Feist dog breed more of a distinctive look.

Because these little dogs are bred for hunting and not for being show dogs, there isn’t any consistency with the appearance of the dog. The Feist dog breed can be crossbred or purebred and are essentially identified by the way they hunt rather than by their appearance. The Feist is also recognized by its erect or semi-erect ears.

Socialization And Training Will Be Imperative

Training a Feist puppy will be challenging as these dogs have minds of their own. Because they are highly energetic, they will need to be socialized. Socializing the Feist dog breed puppy will be key to ensuring you have a well-behaved, confident, well-adjusted dog.

During the Feist puppy’s first 3 months of life, his personality and behavior will be established and this is why it is important to expose him to a variety of people, other animals, places, and situations. He needs to know how to behave and respond in every situation. It is why it is important to buy your Feist puppy from a reputable breed because the way the puppy was handled in his first 7 weeks of life will determine a lot of how he turns out.

You want your Feist puppy to have had a positive experience with adults, kids, and other animals. The whole idea behind socialization is to help your Feist puppy become acclimated to all kinds of events, sights, and smells in a positive manner. Once your Feist puppy has started his vaccinations he can also attend puppy classes, Your vet will be able to provide you with information on puppy socialization classes in your area.


Grooming your Feist dog isn’t going to be difficult with his short, smooth coat. He will essentially require a brush twice a week to get rid of loose hairs and to keep the coat sleek and shiny. Grooming the Feist goes beyond just brushing the short coat. You will want to check his nails that they are short, check in and around his ears, and also keep his teeth in check.

Because the Feist dog breed is energetic, you want to give your Feist the very best dog food there is. Home-made is always good but if you feed him commercially manufactured food, make sure it’s a quality one. The manufacturers of the best dog foods these days have done a wonderful job bringing out dog foods that are well-balanced and nutritious.

Some raw meat added in every now and again is important too to keep his skin and fur shiny and free of allergies. Ensure fresh, cool water is available to him around the clock.

The Feist Is Prone To Allergies

When it comes to the health of the Feist dog breed, he is a robust dog who doesn’t have any particular health issues. He is looked upon as a healthy dog breed and you’re not likely to sit with many health issues with him. With good care, he can reach 16, 17, or 18 years of age if looked after well.

Hip Dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia is a common dog ailment that should always be mentioned. It is a joint problem where the joint doesn’t function smoothly but becomes a grating motion. It is this very grinding motion that brings on pain and arthritis for your Feist. You may notice that he no longer seems to want to play the games he has always loved. You need to know that this disease isn’t reserved for old dogs but can start while your dog is still a puppy.


Look out for allergies in the Feist dog breed as they can cause a host of problems. Typical symptoms of a dog with allergies include sneezing, diarrhea, scratching, and itchy, red skin. Because the Feist dog breed leans towards allergies, it would be a wise move to look at specific allergy prevention dog foods.

Dog food manufacturers bring out all kinds of dog foods geared specifically towards certain problems or seasons in a dog’s life, and these allergy prevention dog foods can be a wise choice. You will know exactly what is going into your pet’s gut.

As a responsible dog owner, it is important to be checking your dog out every now and then to pick up problems early and to get him to the vet. One of the best ways you can prevent health problems arising with your Feist is to always buy puppies and older dogs from a reputable, high-quality breeder, and to avoid backyard breeders.

Many people opt to look for pets from dog shelters and many times the Feist dog breed is confused with the Jack Russell. Yes, they look very similar, but the Feist does tend to have longer legs. Perhaps you could say that another difference between the dogs is that in-between hunts the Feist is calm whereas Jack Russell finds it difficult to settle down.

You’ve Got A Life-Long Companion In The Feist

Loving his human family and being a devoted and loyal canine friend, the Feist is also an intelligent, energetic dog. The Feist has a fearless, jaunty, and friendly personality. The Feist does well with individuals who like to spend time outdoors as well as with families who enjoy an active lifestyle.

It has the ability to form a close and lasting bond with its owner. The Feist is an alert dog and this ensures he becomes a good watchdog dog. When it comes to his human family, he is everybody’s friend, and whether adult, child or another animal, he simply gets on with everyone. He is a strong-willed little dog so training and socialization will become important if you want him to follow your house rules. As it is, because he is so strong-willed he will prefer a consistent, fair, strong-minded owner and in exchange for good care, he will become your devoted companion.

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