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Revised: April 23, 2016
"The Terriers are among the finest of all our dogs. They are strong, alert, inquisitive and courageous, friendly and playful but withal excellent workers. They are endowed with a degree of hardiness seldom encountered in dogs of other kinds, and they have a surprising ability to withstand disease. Asleep or awake, they are alert to unusual sounds and commendably suspicious of strangers. Their inherent curiosity bespeaks their intelligence, and their naturally happy temperament denotes their very joy in living. They are adaptable, too, in fact, they fit into almost any kind of life and, if properly chosen as to breed, they usually fill the bill."
From The Book of All Terriers by John T. Marvin
The Terrier Group
Links are to the American Kennel Club web site's breed descriptions