If the dog you are looking for needs to be a true exterminator with a smooth coat, with a tough and compact build, we recommend that you consider getting a King Rat Terrier.
This playful little dog is an excellent varmint killer, but is also affectionate and needs to be with his human family.
He is also great with kids, but being a terrier, it’s not advisable to have this dog while your kids are small as they might be too much for this dog to handle, and he might defend himself by biting them.
However, to completely make sure that this is the breed you want to welcome into your home, you need to get to know it much better.
And, by knowing everything about the breed, you will know what to pay attention to when choosing a puppy.
But first, you need to know how to find a reputable breeder, right?
Well, we have you fully covered this time. This guide is meant to provide all the necessary knowledge for the entire puppy’s choosing process.
This includes all the traits of the breed, as well as things to keep an eye on while choosing the breeder.
Therefore, we believe that it’s time to start your quest. Let’s see which things you need to be aware of before buying the puppy.
The King Rat Puppies – Before You Buy…
Before you say “Okay, this is exactly the dog I want”, let’s check if you are fine with a few things that need to be done before the purchase.
For example, the first thing you need to know is the price of the puppy.
It would be a shame to fall in love with it only to discover that your budget can’t handle the price.
What price are the King Rat puppies?
For a King Rat that comes from a reputable breeder that has plenty of experience, the price range goes from $700 to $1000.
Of course, you will find much cheaper deals, but those will most likely be backyard breeders or puppy mills, and you will find out in the following section why buying pups from them is a bad idea.
How to find reputable King Rat breeders?
When searching for a King Rat puppy, the number one priority in this quest should be finding a reputable breeder.
From such a breeder, you can expect a puppy that is completely healthy, has no hidden genetic problems and has an easy-going personality.
In two words – Ideal Pet!
Or, if you are serious about taking your dog to dog shows and coming back home with trophies, you can look for premium-quality pups.
These pups come with breeding rights and are sure to be noticed at competitions.
But, their price is high, like, really high.
On the other side of this story, you have breeders that offer puppies that are not registered anywhere, have no pedigree, no documented medical history, no health clearances, and with a suspiciously low price tag.
Those are backyard breeders or puppy mill distributors (why also supply pet shops), and their pups come with a number of health issues and possibly an alarming number of bad genes.
So, if the puppy is too cheap, there’s no paperwork involved, skip the breeder for one that has high recommendations.
And, offers every single little paper that gives you a peace of mind regarding the quality of your dog, and generally feels experienced and interested in making the breed better.
The breeder should also be interested in you.
Meaning, he should ask you about your personal lifestyle, your expectations of the whole dog-owning experience.
This way, he can help you in making sure that this breed suits your personal preferences, and that the puppy you take home matches your personality.
3 Little-known facts about the King Rat puppies
In this section, you will discover some little-known facts about King Rat pups, and be one step closer to knowing if this is the breed you want.
- They are not that stranger friendly
They will do anything to make their family happy. But, when it comes to strangers, they will need time to make sure they can trust them and relax around them.
- They LOVE digging
Not only that, they love digging, and that your garden will never look the same, but these dogs are also escaping artists and will dig under a fence to escape.
Therefore, if you have a yard, make sure the fence is dug deep into the ground.
- They need their minds challenged
King Rat needs huge doses of mental stimulation or he becomes bored. And, when this dog is bored, you can expect to chew on the shoes, newspapers, and pretty much everything he can bite.
So, keep him occupied, especially while he is still a pup. A busy Terrier is a good Terrier.
Physical Traits of the King Rat
Let’s see how “big” this small dog get, and for how long they plan on sticking around.
How big is a full-grown King Rat?
There are two size-types of this breed, the Miniature, which has a height range of 10 to 13 inches, and the Standard, which comes with a height range of 13 to 18 inches.
As for the weight, the range you can expect goes from some 10 pounds and ends at around 25 pounds of weight.
Naturally, the lower end of the weight range is reserved for the Miniature type, while the Standard type is at the higher end of the same range.
What is the life expectancy of the King Rat?
This is the part that will have you pleasantly surprised. When we usually say that a certain breed is in for the long run, usually the lifespan in question is some 15 years.
However, with this breed, life expectancy is some 18 years, assuming that the dog has proper care, enough exercise, and eats high-quality dog food throughout his life.
Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the King Rat
When properly trained and socialized, the bad habits that are associated with the Terrier breed tend to be overshadowed by this dog’s intelligence and willingness to please the owner and the family.
This can also be a great watchdog, and the superb work dog for a farm, due to his exceptional varmint hunting skills.
But, as we mentioned, this is a Terrier after all, and the behavior Terriers are most infamous for is their stubbornness.
They can get so stubborn during their digging, for example, and won’t stop until they’ve made a tunnel that goes all the way to China.
However, you shouldn’t panic because if you “assign” him to a certain area of the yard, he will keep his digging business in that area.
You just have to remind him where that area is from time to time because he is smart enough to remember where it is but stubborn enough to act like he forgot.
Also, you need to know that these dogs are genuine escape artists from the dog world.
They can dig their way through the ground, under your fence, and into the “freedom”.
So, it’s best to be present during his yard exercise times, and not give him a chance to do something both of you will regret later.
Furthermore, due to his high energy levels and the speed these dogs possess, it’s always a smart idea to keep him on the leash all the time while taking a walk, because once he starts chasing a cat or a squirrel, you won’t stand a chance of catching him.
As for the training, King Rat is highly trainable but needs a firm leader that has the patience to deal with his stubbornness episodes.
The exercise these dogs are the best at, include canine sports such as rally, obedience, and similar.
You should also know that this breed is unbelievably intuitive and sensitive, and loves to please the owner.
They demand attention, though, and your angle of approach when it comes to training should be positive and with lots of praise to keep him motivated and interested.
And, when it comes to playing with the kids, most King Rats are patient with kids, though, more with older than with toddlers, but in general, they get along well.
But when speaking of strangers, they tend to be reserved in the beginning, until they are sure that the stranger doesn’t represent any threat to his family’s well being.
All in all, this dog can be a great addition to your home if you have the patience and a strong will, and enough time to provide a proper amount of exercise and plenty of love.
King Rat Diet
The best diet plan for a King Rat includes high-quality, commercial dry dog food.
Of course, you can choose to prepare the meals by yourself, but that is too time demanding and you need to be careful with how good the meal is balanced.
Therefore, it’s both easier and safer for your dog to choose age-appropriate dog food as the manufacturers carefully select the ingredients and the proportions of nutrients for each stage of your dog’s life.
As for the daily food amount, it’s best to consult the breeder and your dog’s vet and stick to the diet plan they give to find the most suitable for your dog.
How much Exercise does a King Rat need?
There are King Rats that will be happy with the amount of exercise they get in the home, without going outside to burn the excess energy.
But, most of the time, playing with your dog inside, won’t be enough, and he will need at least two daily walks, combined with exercise sessions in the dog park, where he can also socialize with other dogs and brush up on his manners.
But, during the walk, before you get to a well-fenced dog park, make sure that your King Rat is on the leash all the time.
His prey drive can kick in every time he sees a cat or some small rodent, and you will have a hard time catching up with this little speedster.
The King Rat Health and Conditions
This breed is known for having relatively good health.
But, as with any other dog breed, certain health conditions can pop up from time to time, and it’s best to be aware of what problems your dog can suffer from.
What you need to keep in mind and regularly reminding the vet about are the following conditions:
- Patellar Luxation
- Eye disorders
- Hip dysplasia
- Cardiac disorders
- Perthes disease.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that your dog will suffer from these problems, but it’s best to be aware of the possibility and if needed, react in time and minimize the damage.
My final thoughts on the King Rat
With the health section, you have reached the final chapter of our King Rat guide.
We hope that the knowledge you gained here has given you a better idea of what this breed is all about and that now, you can make the right final decision.
But, to make sure no stone is left unturned, let’s take another look at the most important facts.
This hole-digging, master of escape is a true Terrier. He is never boring, always willing to play, and simply hates varmints.
They can be stubborn at times, and you should not expect your King Rat to have the will to please everybody.
His heart belongs to his family and they are all that he cares about.
Strangers, on the other hand, have to work hard to gain their trust.
He is good with children and other dogs if socialized right from the start, and will act as a watchful guardian and engage threats that are twice his size without a problem.
That is why training is necessary so that he learns to listen to you and stay out of trouble.
But, when all the Terrier drama dust settles, you have a wonderful, affectionate little dog that only wants to be loved by his family, and is happy to return that love all the time.
There you have it, a King Rat in a nutshell!
Thanks for reading our guide and know that we were more than happy to help you out in your dog searching quest.
Also, feel free to share this guide on social media if you think that your friends can benefit from getting to know more about this magnificent little dog.
Emily started this blog out of pure passion. She LOVES her 3 dogs; Chew Barka, Cooper & Nelson, and spends countless hours every day playing with them.
When she’s not nerding out on dogs, you’ll find her on a snowboard or in the kitchen baking chocolate brownies.
She’s been featured in PetAware, Dogtime, and ModernDog.
- The King Rat Puppies – Before You Buy…
- Physical Traits of the King Rat
- Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the King Rat
- King Rat Diet
- The King Rat Health and Conditions
- My final thoughts on the King Rat