The Heideterrier is still relatively young dog breed, that came into being in 1970s in Germany. The reason for creating of new dog breed was the desire for just as skilled hunting dog as the already existing Jagdterrier, but that would have larger size, which would enable the dog to hunt wild boar in difficult terrain.
They also wanted a calmer dog, than the typical terrier. They did not want a dog that will run into every hole searching for prey. But the dog should prevail all the other hunting traits of a good terrier, such as very good nose, endurance, high prey drive and loyalty to the owner.
The first men who started developing the Heideterrier were Karl Heinz Markhoff and Hans Werner Jahnke. They decided to cross the Jagdterrier with hunting-appropriate Airedale Terriers. Those two breeds are the main ancestors of todays Heideterrier.
Some could call the Heideterrier as a crossbreed, and it is true that they are not officially recognized by any major kennel club, but these dogs exist for decades, most of them are used for working purposes and most real Heideterriers are bred according to the system and bloodlines of the founders.
Heideterriers used for breeding should pass something, that could be called as performance test, where they show their wild boar hunting skills. These dogs should have strong nerves, they should hunt with intelligence, but they should not be overly sharp like most terriers are and they should be able to hunt by sight and by nose. The Heideterrier is a dog breed that is bred for a purpose, for a performance, rather than for appearance and dog shows.
The Heideterrier has potential in other fields than hunting wild boar as well. They make great retrieving dogs, on both land and water. And due to its very good nose, they would be able to work as police dogs, for example as sniffer dogs or rescue dogs. But their main utilization will always be wild boar hunting.
But this is not only a hunter, but also loving and loyal companion. This is very stable, well mannered and completely devoted dog towards its family. They are relatively soft, especially in comparsion with other terriers, so they might make good partners for kids, but of course, you should always supervise the interaction between young children and any dog breed. The Heideterrier can live with other dogs in the household, but other family pets might be problematic, due to the Heideterriers higher prey drive.
Many Heideterriers might have pretty strong character, lets say independent. It is very typical for most hunting dog breeds, they must be able to think and solve problems on the hunt bythemselves. This can make them little bit difficult to handle for novices, but with proper socialization and training and with enough daily exercise, the Heideterrier can make very good companion. These dogs have pretty strong desire to please.
If the Heideterrier is not used for hunting, daily physical and mental exercise is a must, so the dog stay healthy and happy. Daily longer walks, jogs, vigorous playtime or fun training sessions are essential for this dog breed. This is not a coach potatoe! Without enough exercise, they might develop some unwanted behaviour, such as destruction.
And what about the appearance? For a terrier, this is relatively robust and large dog breed, with average height between 45-55 cm, which is 17-22 in and weight is typically between 15-25 kg, which is 33-55 lbs. So this is medium sized dog breed and naturally, females are slightly smaller than males.
The Heideterrier should have athletic, but muscular body, straight legs, semi-cropped ears and good scissor bite. They can come in different coat types, either short-haired or wire-haired and the typical colors are black, red and combinations of those two colors.
Last, but not least, lets talk about the health of Heideterrier. The average lifespan is around 12 or 13 years. The breed is usually pretty healthy, but just like any other breed, there are some health issues that are occuring in this breed. We talk about the primary lens luxation, myopathy, and some joint problems, such as elbow and hip dysplasia. But these problems should not be extremely common in the Heideterrier and the breed should usually be quite healthy.